Santiago School of Rock a 2015 Design Is…Award Global Winner

Shaw Contract Group conducted interviews with all firms of Global Award winning projects from the 2015 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn more about the winning projects.  These are their stories.

Here, Enrique Gonzalez Barrenechea from EGBARQ addresses the design process for School of Rock in Santiago Chile.


Describe this project in one word.

Roquero (closest translation:  rocky – like mountainous terrain)

How does this project demonstrate how design can impact users in a space?

We focus design around experiences, how users live and how we can enhance, exalt it, feel and transmit. Santiago School of Rock is an experience of how music lessons and rehearsals can be experienced in different environments. Each room has an educational purpose. We worked with large image formats representing the different styles, classes and celebrities to help convey ‘rock’ in the classroom. Students are joyful regarding all aspects of the school – they don’t want to leave, they feel they are part of it. With a good design, the user wants to stay within the experience. Supporting the success of this institution, the school is listed second in enrollment world wide.


Design is a process. Explain your journey.

The start of the design process has different stages. The first is to establish the real needs of the program. Second, determine how they interact with each other.  This is followed by looking at the technical requirements,  and finally, identifying the resources you have to set up the project. When all of these things are clarified, you open the door to the intuition and interpretation of these goals – and start designing. After a final review of all parts again –  and then of the design, there is a period of back-and-forth – always increasing the quality of the design and to balance of all the inputs. We support our work with 3d images, models, sketchs, drawings, schemes, samples of finishing materials. We are obsessive.


What are the most important lessons you’ve learned through this project that you’d want to share with the designers of tomorrow?

Before advocating completely to the design of the expression of the project, make sure all technical aspects are in line. If  designing a kitchen, you would first make sure the user will be able to properly cook within this space.

Listen to the client, he knows his needs better than you do.

Allow others to participate in the design process. It´s always good to have the collaboration of others.

No matter the budget you have for the project, there are always ways to be creative. Review the elements and don’t overlook anything. There always ways to improve the design.

Practice coherence. All parts must add up to the major design. The language can be the same but not the expression.

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