THE CURRENT ARCHITECT
In my opinion, architects are the artists who have the ability to create new structures or improve older ones in order to fulfill our society needs, or even just the needs of a person in particular. To develop a little more the definition I had given before, we will see how other architects along history describe the concept of their own profession.
To Alfonso Muñoz Cosme, an spanish architect, architecture not only studies its surroundings, but it also imagines how they could be. Architects then work with their sight to perceive and with their hands to conceive. Their senses and mental abilities are connected.
To Alberto Campo Baeza, another spanish architect, architects build ideas from dreams, they materialise their thoughts.
But even between architects, the idea of this profession is discussed. For Peter Zumthor, a swiss architect, architects are more related to construction other than philosophy or art. To him, the good architects were Mies Van Der Rohe and Le Corbusier, instead of the new generations.
To Kazuyo Sejima, a japanese architect, architects are more focused on composition, how elements are displaced and how it can affect people’s lifes depending of the organisation.
Once we might have an idea of what an architect is, we need to develop our abilities, because at it has been said before, their job is to materialise ideas. In this blog, it has been mentioned before the book “Quiero ser un arquitecto” by Campo Baeza, in which he gives advise of activities we can do to improve our skills. Some of them were:
- Analysing what surrounds us, so we get used to it.
- Drawing and taking photos, to understand the proportions of things, how they work out.
- Travelling, reading and watching films, to get new points of view, to learn, to understand the composition of spaces.
- Learn to think: be critical, learn things by yourself, acquire a network of capabilities.
If you are interested in a deeper analysis of the book, you can find it here: https://46076497e.blogs.upv.es/reading-and-comprehension-of-a-text-and-reflections-quiero-ser-arquitecto/
From the experience, we have Frank Lloyd Wright, who gives us some tips if we want to take architecture for a living:
- Do not take architecture for a living, unless you are eager to do it, unless architecture excites you.
- Ask yourself about the why of things.
- Analyse everything, try to differenciate beauty and curiosity.
- Think “simple”, from general to particular.
- Learn to take criticism.
- Take time to prepare yourself, to improve your abilities or to learn new ones.
- Try to be in touch with direct construction, see how everything works in reality.
- Create projects with character.
- Do not enter any competition.
This last one has been denied by my own teachers, who believe that being part of a competition can give you experience, new ideas, knowledge… And I totally agree with them.
In Spain, architects need to follow the law: “Ley 38/1999, 5 november , de Ordenación Municipal”, which regulates the building process, its obligations and responsabilities. As architects we can work in many jobs such as: self-employed, in a company, in administration, as a teacher… And my favourite one, because it seems very fun: doing extremely huge cakes! There was a TV programm called “Cake Boss”, where the people who made the cakes were either architects or design engineers, due to the size, they needed to know about physics and construction so the desserts wouldn’t fall down.