• Confessions Of A Critic: Architecture The Lady

We live with architecture every day and we can’t avoid the experience it creates either. Many styles come by and experts have had big words to describe them. In the day architecture one will hear of modern architecture, postmodern architecture, deconstructive architecture, critical regionalism architecture and even showy architecture. It’s a mix of both professional accepted descriptions and made up descriptions just to drive a point home. I want personally to look at architecture as a fine a lady and for fun and easier elaboration to describe the architecture I see today. She can be beautiful, functional, well groomed, with overdone make up or just plain at times and lacking in content. She can be anything.

Modern architecture
Modern architecture is supposedly a sophisticated lady that is mostly assumed to fit in any region of the world. Her style is deemed universal and needs not to blend to any particular context. She stamps herself across continents with the same fashion sense and she is not particular with make-up and grooming either. She goes for simple off the shelf items and few to none are custom made. Her beauty is a very subjective item but she is generally acceptable to the general public. She is likely to be found almost everyone.

Deconstructive Architecture
I don’t ascribe to deconstructive architecture and associate it with violent combination of item in proportion that only seem fit to the designer. It is a go getter lady, she knows what she wants and she will get it at any cost and at times even stepping on others. She has mostly all the elements of a beautiful girl but not the norm proportions like the waist maybe too high for example. Sometimes she is acceptable with those unnatural proportions but at times it becomes rather weird. The deconstructive lady is more often than not dressed in multicolored items and overdone make-up. She claims be more inclined to the arts than science. She may not be very keen on her inner personality as she believes she has made a big statement with her outward look. However some of these deconstructive ladies have managed to have very pleasing personalities within their flashy outlooks. Basically these one have great experience of space and their functions meet the brief appropriately.

Organic Architecture
Organic architecture is one of the finest ladies to meet. Its tenets propose design to match context and blend with the environment. She is classy and strong of character but not showy. She is mostly humble and very welcoming and has high regard of its surrounding. She grows into a person as one gets to know her better.  She does her roles with ease, consistency and flow. I look at the works of F.L. Wright every day and as I grow and continue understanding architecture it becomes better. She is a lady you want to see every day and you are still not tired of them.

Showy architecture
I recently heard of this practice of architecture and am sure it’s just make up term and not professional. Deconstructive will also fit to this but its wide than that. This is architecture that is aimed at creating art pieces. It focuses more on this even in its brief and the other roles come second. As a lady showy architecture has an elevated sense of fashion and her make-up is overdone at times but not necessarily bad.  She may not care much about her personality as her outward appearance is a statement of its own. She is multicolored dressed but unlike deconstructive one she is likely to match her colors well and is very pleasing to the eye. Mostly people fail to understand her and as most art pieces keep guessing her motives. One will like to be associated with her as she looks good.

Regional Architecture.
I want to look at critical regionalism in Africa. As a son of the continent I want to describe the works of Kere in Gando and Kunle in Lagos Lagoon who are doing great social architecture for the local person among other works. Their works are naturally beautiful ladies that need no make-up or proper grooming to be noticed. They have custom made dressing and if they happened to be groomed well the world will stop and stare. They are ladies of value and one can always depend on them. They solve the problems of the majority which most ladies will not like to be associated with.

There are many ways of looking at architecture and other ways of describing it. Personally I may be inclined to one style or the other but when all is done architecture should function. It can be beautiful and it should but most importantly it should satisfy what its brief demanded. Functions should not be fitted/forced into art pieces but rather art pieces should be guided by the functions. Let the form follow the function, at the least that’s how I think design should be.


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