We asked different architects, how do you contribute to the profession and how does being a woman impact it?


October being the month of non-violence, and aware of the situation that the world is currently experiencing; MENTES decides to join the fight against gender inequality. Through the empowerment of female architects, and highlighting the contribution of each one of them to the profession, we seek that more women join it every day. Without a doubt, we are entrepreneurs and add that sensitivity that distinguishes us in the field, we spread our contribution and we achieve that every day more women accompany us on this journey.

Mónica Arzoz Canalizo

Architect graduated from the Ibero-American University of Mexico City (2010), Master in Urbanism and Housing by the AA Architectural Association School of Architecture, (2012).

As an architect and urban planner, I seek to promote an architecture that transcends the scale of the projects themselves, that is conceived as part of a system capable of positively impacting the environment and absorbing the changing needs of the territory and its inhabitants. I understand architecture as the product of a process that links the physical with the social, integrates the urban and the environmental, and starts from the understanding of the city and the territory.

I like to believe that this understanding of the profession, together with the use of flexible and innovative designs, allow the generation of spaces that meet different social objectives, among which the improvement in the quality of life of people and the creation of equitable and safe evironments stand out, the latter, of great importance for women.

As an architect, entrepreneur and teacher, I seek that the work I do in different fields meets the needs of diverse and changing cities, who are increasingly ours; more feminine. I am convinced that a vision enriched by the different genres undoubtedly favors the impact of architecture as a tool for social transformation.

Andrea Monroy Braham

Architect and Master in Restoration of Monuments, Professor at La Salle University of Restoration.

In my professional life I feel very enthusiastic about two aspects: The first, my love for the history of Mexico related to the multicultural synthesis materialized in the architecture of all times and the second, the social processes of my country. My contribution has been and is, allowing myself to study it and protect it with my formative principles, in such a way that an awareness and reflection of any case study that is being intervened is created. Thus, the user knows the memory and the elements that generate the chronicle of the monument.

My position as a woman has allowed me to create empathy and a link to what I know, to raise awareness so that in my second professional passion, which is teaching, I can transmit this knowledge so that future generations share this vision that I have of the value it represents. architecture through time in Mexico.

Gabriela Sarahi

Photographer Architect from the Universidad Veracruzana, professor of photography at the Veracruzana University of Cinema Luis Buñuel.

Documenting spaces has been my task for four years now, in this way I contribute to our beloved profession. A photograph for me transcends beyond a single click, it is a great responsibility because I must fragment reality through a frame. This in turn must convey the essence of the place, give truth, represent the style of the architect and contribute to our collective memory. I portray that exact point of the end of a process and the beginning of a new stage, my photographs represent that nostalgia of letting go of a project when handing it over to its owner.

Photography has become a very noble field, it is so democratic that anyone who can have a camera within their reach is a photographer. In this case, being an architectural photographer covers two aspects in my life:

  1. It helps me pave the way for more women who are interested in developing this activity, since it is a fact that there are very few women working in this field
  2. It gives me the confidence to encourage more fellow women architects to develop themselves

Sometimes I feel that we lack confidence to enter contests, publish, share our work. Having the opportunity to be behind a camera has helped me to share the work of fellow architects, an action that in turn helps to make our presence visible in the world of architecture.

Gabriela Granados

Architect from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), graduated from Industrialized Components for Building from the UNAM Postgraduate Unit. She is a collaborator of a housing project with a sustainable approach in Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca.

Working on the Oaxacan coast has been a 180 turn, there are factors that often made me rethink a life here, however; knowing another environment much simpler than the city, began to generate a susceptibility about my new place, building in the face of the inevitable growth that this part of Oaxaca is experiencing makes us reflect on the great responsibility we have practically designing on blank canvases, the respect for the place becomes fundamental.

Thanks to the understanding that I have achieved for almost two years and that is still evolving, my contribution in each project touches on the sensitive part towards the context, where each wall does not limit, but invites to live and connect with nature, on the other hand, Knowing more about the use of land, stone, straw, wood as materials from the area makes the experience more enriching, which clearly poses a challenge.

Now, as a woman it can become complicated, even more so if you are new and young, the general environment is based on experience and vigor, it opens a debate on how ready are you to give greater responsibilities to a woman? At times the environment falls into underestimation, the routine and the efficiency with which things are done do not give time to think about it, much less to delegate. Even with that, we continue to learn, not to be silent, to be more tolerant and intelligent, the changes are not from one day to the next, but, above all, to improve ourselves day by day.

Dinorah Martínez Schute

Architect from the Universidad Iberoamericana Recently graduated from the postgraduate master's degree: MASDFAB ETH Master of Advanced Studies ETH in Architecture and Digital Fabrication at ETH Zurich 2019-2020, in Zurich, Switzerland (masdfab.com/) developing the thesis: “Porous Assemblies , Robotic 3D Printing of Sustainable Mineral Foam for Novel Lightweight Architectures”

For me architecture is the art of creating experiences in space, each wall or structure that we design influences our daily life and transforms it. That is why we must be aware of the way we do architecture, what materials we choose and rethink the process. In my short career, I have contributed with my curiosity to explore new ways of doing architecture hand in hand with technology and the discovery of new materials and solutions that generate a positive impact on the environment through various experiences, practices and studies that I have done in my last 5 years, living in different cultures, as well as working in companies with diverse approaches, scales and creative processes. Every day I believe more in diversity in our profession and the strength to open dialogue with other disciplines, cultures and practices. None is better than the other, they are simply different approaches that do not compete, they complement each other. The important thing is to be clear about what we want and where we are going, with balance, that is the concept of the “utopian” architect, an architect with a balanced practice between creativity and reality.

Being a woman in this profession is not easy, since unfortunately architecture has been a profession focused on men, especially in construction, however, it has allowed me to motivate other female architects to use ourselves and he demonstrates with our work that one day we will have the same rights and opportunities as the opposite sex, and that gender is not a factor that prevents us from growing or having a voice, every day there are more of us who are being listened to, understood and, above all, admired for our work, generating opportunities for more and more women in the guild, and that every day more women join the list of enterprising and critical architects.