Mark Pellant – Director & Architect
Mark was born and grew up in conservative Surrey but, having a Swiss mother, was fortunate to be exposed to European design and ideas from an early age. By the age of 12 he knew he wanted to be an architect and studied hard to get into School of Architecture. After seven years training and graduating with distinction from the University of Brighton he worked for a number of internationally acclaimed, design-led architecture practices including Conran & Partners and Sheppard Robson in London. Mark gained extensive project experience in the housing, commercial, education and health sectors during this time and also later worked in Australia for Group GSA architects on the Sydney International Shooting Centre for the 2000 Olympics.
In the mid-1990s Mark spent more than three years travelling overland through Africa, Asia and South America on a modern-day equivalent of the 18th century ‘Grand Tour’. Not only were these travels hugely influential in terms of exposure to alternative world culture, architecture and design, but they were a sobering experience highlighting global environmental devastation and the onset of the effects of climate change. He witnessed at first-hand glaciers retreating, severe flooding, drought, polluted seas and beaches, deforestation and wide-spread poverty.
Following this experience Mark resolved to make a difference in both his personal and professional life and in March 2000 he established his own practice – Koru Architects – with the intention of designing sustainable, low-energy buildings that would reduce carbon emissions and promote the use of healthy, natural and sustainable materials. Seven years later Mark took the opportunity to design and build his own eco house and put into practice his architectural ideals and sustainable principles to create a zero carbon home / office built from natural materials with low embodied energy. The house was awarded the RIBA Downland Prize for sustainability 2011.
Koru Architects is now expanding and yet Mark remains true to his principles to deliver thoughtfully designed, sustainable solutions to his clients. His vision for the future of the practice is to expand into more diverse work sectors such as commercial, education, healthcare and leisure and to be the leading ‘eco architects’ in the South East. Mark serves on the Architects Design Review Panel for Eastbourne Borough Council and has been a fully chartered and registered architect for over 25 years.
Issi Rousseva – Architect
Issi is a fully qualified and registered architect, with a RIBA Part III qualification, masters degree in architecture from the University of Brighton and an undergraduate degree from Kingston University. Issi joined Koru Architects in March 2016 and works closely with Mark on all stages of the design and management process.
Issi is experienced with a range of design and image editing software and also loves hand sketching. She has worked on architectural projects in Switzerland and Bulgaria as well as the UK, giving her an insight into the international diversity of architectural styles and building regulations. Before she started her career in architecture, Issi worked for four years as a Section Commander at the University of London Officer Training Corps, where she trained cadets and picked up strong leadership skills.
Aylin Metin – Architectural Assistant
Aylin joined Koru Architects as an Architectural Assistant in February 2017 to support Mark on design work for all our projects. She is currently finishing her Part II Masters Degree in Architecture at the University of Kent, where her dissertation is on improving the quality of urban life through waterfront developments.
She holds an undergraduate degree in Architecture from the University of Portsmouth, where she worked on a wide range of design projects and picked up skills in digital architectural design and image editing software and hand sketching. Before starting at Koru Architects she previously worked at What Architecture in London as an Architectural Assistant. Aylin learnt to draw at practically the same time as learning to walk, and has always loved art and photography. She is multilingual, speaking four languages.
Sophia Marci-Anderson – Marketing & Communications Officer
Sophia is a graduate in French & Italian from the University of Cardiff. After her studies she spent three years travelling extensively in South America, Asia and New Zealand and returning occasionally to Cornwall where she grew up. She then worked for five years in the adventure travel industry while living in Scotland, before moving into content editing and marketing. She’s a keen traveller who loves the outdoors and blogs about her active travel experiences.
After living in Lyon, France for two years Sophia moved to Brighton in 2017 to complete a diploma in Journalism. She is the newest member of the team and joined Koru Architects in April 2018 as the Marketing & Communications Officer.