Prize Winner

W.O. Hutcheson Prize

MSA Stage 5 School of Architecture

Callum Symmons


Born 1996, Aberdeen. Educated between ESALA Edinburgh, KADK Copenhagen, MSA Glasgow, & AAM Mendrisio. Experience working with OFFICE Kersten Geers David Van Severen, Brussels & David Kohn Architects, London. Currently a director of the AE Foundation.

Personal Website
Thesis Project
Making Public

Making Public

Making Public is an investigation into two themes: processes of transformation, and the contemporary form of the public.

The thesis takes Genova, Italy, as a testing ground: a city with a rich history of contested public space. The extreme industrial expansion of the Genova’s port during the 20th century has intensified a problematic codependency between the city and its industry, marginalising public space within the residential districts inhabited by the port’s workers.

A close reading of these neighbourhoods reveals an opportunity: a network of abandoned aristocratic villas, preserved as relics of the medieval Genovese republic. The appropriation and transformation of this private typology offers the possibility of retroactively establishing a system of public spaces within an urbanism scarred and segregated by industrial infrastructure.

The thesis selects one such instance – the Villa Rossazza –  as a case study, transforming the villa and its garden into a new performative public form through a surgical process of architectural otomy and prosthesis. This transformation is conceived as a catalyst, the first of several subsequent projects that would collectively form a new typology: the villa publica.