It’s not completely wrong to say that there’s an informality to Tiago do Vale’s architecture.
There’s a refusal of sorts to schools, currents or movements -even to the modern movement, at least in a rationalized way- a bit like when Távora said that “style doesn’t matter, what matters is the relationship between construction and life”.
This doesn’t mean that this practice’s design is shallow: quite the opposite, its design is supported by deeply critical, discerning and genuine answers to each circumstance, answers more focused on appropriation, sensibility and continuity with the built culture, avoiding acritical formal or conceptual limitations that impoverish the range of possibilities for the project. That’s where the cohesion of this body of work comes from.
In this sense, every project becomes a renovation exercise: if there's a building there, its merits, history, constructive techniques, strengths and its physical and cultural context become the foundation for the most minute (but most transformative) intervention, in order to extend its timeline well into the future; if there's an empty space there, the emptiness is renovated through these same exact principles.
What this practice proposes, in the end, is to stop architecture from being a circularly self-referencing object, both in its design and its thinking, and to make it part, continuity and product of the wide culture where it is inscribed.
The office has been recognized in the renovation field with the ArchDaily Building of the Year Awards, First Prize (Refurbishment); the 2015 Architizer A+ Awards, First Prize (Architecture +Preservation); the American Architecture Prize, Third Prize (Heritage Architecture); the 2018 Architizer A+Awards, Double First Prize (Architecture +Preservation), the Muse Design Awards, Platinum Award (Historic Restoration); and the Baku International Architecture Award, First Prize (Historic Interior Restoration) and Honorable Mention (Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Historic Building), among others.