João Cepeda

Constantly striving for the essence.

Prone to eschew fashion or trends of any kind.
Pursuits serenity.

Focuses on materiality and pure construction, without any other meaning.

They ground and embody the core support of architecture.

Significance and value come afterwards –

they lie in the eye of the beholder.

Aspires for the harmony and spareness of the most natural, pure and tactile materials –

stone, wood and glass.

Believes that each project bears the imprint of its own circumstances.
Hence, each project synthesizes a unique, unrepeatable and poetic endeavor.

Refers Japan as a defining experience in his life.
In Japan, he was guided through a line of local customs and traditions, and enlightened to their exquisite culture.
As such, he learned their evocative vision of the mundane, and the beauty of impermanence.
Ever since, he became interested in presence, and in forcing out of built spaces a sense of belonging, memory and grace.

Practices architecture as a secular discipline that, among and together with several areas of expertise, (still) possesses its own autonomy.

Claims that, every so often, it may reach a timeless artistic existence.

Hence, he interprets architecture as

an art of building,

an art of inhabiting –

and, ultimately,

an art of living.

Awards and recognitions


Golden Trezzini Awards   •   Nominee
Best Project of Private Residence

(Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum,
USA | Switzerland | Russia)


Aedificio Awards   •   Winner
“Progetto Meritevole” | Deserving Project

(Aedificio, Italy)


Fernando Távora Prize   •   2nd Place
Prémio Fernando Távora

(Portuguese Architects Guild – Ordem dos Arquitectos)


Fernando Távora Prize   •   2nd Place
Prémio Fernando Távora

(Portuguese Architects Guild – Ordem dos Arquitectos)

Architects Now Prize   •   Winner

Prémio Arquitectos Agora
(Portuguese Architects Guild – Ordem dos Arquitectos)

Premios FAD de Arquitectura e Interiorismo   •   Finalist

(ArquinFAD, Spain)


(Lisbon, Portugal, 1983)

Portuguese architect and researcher.

Graduated in Architecture by the Technical University of Lisbon (Portugal).

Completed his Master in Architecture at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (Switzerland), after winning a grant from the Swiss Confederation.

Integrated, in Switzerland, the “Laboratoire de Production Architecturale ”, from the Swiss architect Harry Gugger, former main partner of the Swiss architectural firm “Herzog & De Meuron ”.

Worked in Paris, as a research fellow, at the Fondation Le Corbusier (2012).

Participated in the 14th Architecture Venice Biennale (2012).

Authored the book “Nadir Afonso, Architect ” (2013), a monographic work about the architecture of the renowned Portuguese painter-architect Nadir Afonso, who worked with Le Corbusier and Oscar Niemeyer.

Worked in Japan, in Tokyo, at the architectural office of Shinichi Ogawa (2013-2014).

Worked in Lisbon, at Frederico Valsassina’s architectural office (2015-2019).

Published in Portugal, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Russia, Brazil, USA, China and Japan, he has also collaborated with various international art and architectural entities, publications and exhibitions, and different cultural media and online channels, by authoring several articles, chronicles and essays, or giving testimonies and interviews in audiovisual form.

Established his own practice since 2019, while simultaneously developing his Architecture PhD at the Faculty of Architecture of the University of Porto – FAUP (Portugal).


Appreciates things simple.
Music and writing are his other great passions.