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147 Wappoo Creek Drive, Suite 400
Charleston SC 29412

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Spotlight On: Allie Beck, Associate AIA

Mez Joseph

Liollio is proud to announce Allie Beck, Associate AIA, as our November “Spotlight On” feature. A Masters of Architecture graduate at Clemson University, Allie relocated to Charleston in May to join our firm as Project Designer. We recently sat down for a Q&A with one of our newest team members.

How long have you lived in Charleston?
Almost 5 months. I moved here on my birthday then started work a week later.  Before that I hadn’t really ever been to Charleston and kind of moved here on a whim. It’s paid off so far!

Where did you grow up?
Colleyville, Texas

What area of town do you live in?
I live in Harleston Village on the peninsula.  It’s a 7 minute walk to Kaminsky’s (I’ve timed it), which is very dangerous.

Are you married?
LOL

Do you have children?
LOL

What are the top three things you like to do in your free time?
I used to do a lot of black and white analogue photography which is actually what brought me to architecture. I decided to take the hint when all my photographs were of buildings. I didn’t really have time to pursue it during architecture school. I’d like to pick it back up again.

Do you have any pets?
I have a black mollie fish named Ray, after Ray Eames.

Do you have any brothers/sisters? If so, where do you fall in the “line-up?
I have a little brother who is 20 and in his third year of Mechanical Engineering at Texas A&M, and he already hates architects. I guess they start teaching that to engineers early now.I am the oldest. All of the stereotypes are true.

What building have you visited that most impressed you?
While I was studying abroad in Barcelona, my friends and I took a trip to Berlin one weekend and visited the Jewish Museum by Daniel Libeskind. While the building itself was impressive, I was blown away by the interior spaces. The “Voided Void, or Holocaust Tower, was a huge empty silo with a single ray of light at the very top; out of reach. You were supposed to enter alone, and even though I knew my friends were right on the other side of the door, the architecture created such a total sense of loneliness and isolation. I’ll never forget it. I was pretty burnt out from architecture school before my study abroad and was beginning to reconsider my career choice.  But that one room at the museum showed me the power of architecture and how it can affect people. It reignited my passion for this profession.

What architect or architecture firm most inspires you?
I have a huge architecture crush on Lake | Flato.

What is your favorite country you have traveled to and why?
Barcelona will always have my heart. I spent a semester there studying abroad in my junior year of college. It just completely rocked my whole perspective of the world.

What inspires you most?
I’m really inspired when details are as beautiful as the building. To me, that’s complete and total architecture.

What is the hardest part about your job?
Email. I feel the same way about email as I do about olives (see below).

What book do you plan to read?
Whatever is next in the line-up on my shelf at home. I have a whole shelf with books I haven’t read yet, so whenever I finish a book, I just grab the next one in line.

What is your favorite book?
This isn’t my favorite book I’ve read, but definitely my most favorite books I own. I grew up knowing my grandfather was an engineer, but I didn’t know he studied architecture until after I decided to study it in college. My grandmother gave me some of his architecture books, one of which is his old Architectural Graphic Standards from the 50’s with some of his hand-written notes in it. He’s no longer with us so it’s pretty special.

What is your favorite restaurant?
I wouldn’t really call it a restaurant, but I can always go for a Chipotle burrito.


What’s your favorite place in Charleston?
I really love getting onto the bridge in the evenings and coming up over the hill to see all of Downtown with the Ravenel Bridge behind it and boats in the water.  It’s a nice thing to see on your way home from work.

What do you like on your pizza?
All the things.

What is your favorite food?
Spaghetti. In a bathtub. With a beer. For me there’s nothing better to cure a bad day than a really hot bath with all the fixings and a big bowl of spaghetti. Anything I’m struggling with seems pretty manageable after that.

What is your least favorite food?
Olives. I’ve tried them multiple times, they’re gross. I’m sorry to all the olive-lovers out there.


Dogs or cats?
Dogs! But only big dogs. Anything smaller than a Lab is considered a cat.

If you could be any animal, what would you be and why?
A hummingbird! It would be my Patronus. They’re like nature’s little fighter jet planes.


Do you play any instruments?
I am very non-musically inclined.

If you could play an instrument, what would it be?
I could probably rock out on a tambourine.

What song is at the top of your most played list (be honest)?
This is embarrassing. Call Me Maybe is my official top played song. I was a camp counselor when the song first came out, and when energy got low with the kids we would blare it and make them dance to get energy back up. They loved it, and it’s still my top played song, which should tell you how often we played it that week. Dust to Dust by the Civil Wars is a favorite of mine, along with anything by Journey, but I’ve recently been listening to River by Bishop Briggs on a loop.

Who is your favorite musical artist?
Mumford & Sons. We saw them live in Barcelona while studying abroad and it was one of the more spiritual experiences of my life.

What’s your favorite movie?
The Sandlot. You’re killing me Smalls! Never gets old.

Favorite television show?
Any crime show. I love trying to unravel the crime. The best one is Criminal Minds, it can get pretty gnarly but I love the mixture of psychology with crime fighting, it’s absolutely fascinating.


What’s your astrological sign?
Gemini, but I don’t know what that means.

Last movie you watched?
While I was home for the hurricane, my mom and I watched the original Carrie on TV, a great kick off to the Halloween season.

Guilty pleasure?
Paranormal shows, mac n’ cheese, and drive through car washes.

What is the proudest moment of your life, thus far?
My last semester of grad school, one of my classmates signed up our entire class for intramural ultimate frisbee. None of us had ever played a game or knew the rules but we started taking 5-10 minute frisbee breaks from studio to practice and every Wednesday we would all leave studio together to go play our game for that week. And we were good! It was completely shocking. We kept winning and eventually it became an event for the entire college. Every Wednesday night, professors, students and administrators would leave the building together to watch us play. Like every great underdog story, we won the championship! It was a great last thing that our class accomplished together before we graduated.