REFLECT: ARCHITECTURE IS CONCEPT, MATERIALIZED AND REALIZED
The era of information acceleration has fueled social tensions resulting in nativism that distracts from the global challenge of climate change. Architects in the early twenty-first century need to be so much more than master builders, we are called to be socio-geo-political-environmentalists, renaissance people.
Work that is to have meaning in this context must be approached with a broad understanding; culture, society, art, history, physics and chemistry. This is what Regenerative Practitioners term “proximal wholes,” the practices that are adjacent and relevant to ours. In every case we need to take a moment to reflect and ask how our efforts and the efforts of everyone involved in a building project will impact, influence, and improve the entire environment in which they exist.
This could be termed “radical contextualism” where context exists not only as a physical remnant but also, socially and historically. This is Place based thinking where each unique location is part of the larger whole “living system.”. Architecture that understands its place in living systems can be better than neutral, it can contribute to human and environmental well-being.
Working in this fashion demands the simultaneous contemplation of the social and the physical sciences and that makes our work distinct from that of all other professions. In this sense it is a “total” occupation and requires renaissance people for its successful practice.
Great architecture has always been based in clear, concise conceptual ideas or ideals. Relevant concepts arise from the spirit of the times, the zeitgeist, that demands new solutions and new forms. Coupled with innovation in material and technical sciences we find a basis, a conceptual framework, for design in the twenty first century.