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The Art and Science of Architecture

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Architecture is a profession that combines the aspects of art and technology to the extremities. It refers to the activities in organizing, preparing, and executing structures like buildings.

Etymologically, the term is from the Latin word “architectura”, which in its turn originated from the Greek word “arkhitekton” which can be interpreted as the ‘chief builder’.

This blog post is an attempt to discover more about the profession of architects and the field of architecture as well as its history, importance, types and influences on society.

Evolution of architecture could be as old as civilization but its fully fledged started with the Historical period.

Architecture has always played a critical role within the historical record of man starting as a civilization. Beginning from earliest ages to the more recent times and from Egypt to New York today, architecture has never ceased to change and to adapt.

Ancient Architecture

Ancient Architecture

  • Egyptian Architecture: Known for the large-scale designs such as the pyramids and temples, Egyptian architecture focused on deifying the constructions and providing a comfortable afterlife for the deceased.
  • Greek Architecture: Some of the famous structures of Greek architecture included columns and temples like the Parthenon Greek architecture was characterized by symmetry and proportions and used the Doric, Ionic and Corinthian orders.
  • Roman Architecture: Developing it further with the Greek ideas, Romans made modifications with the help of arch, vault, and dome making structures like the Colosseum and aqueduct.

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Medieval Architecture

  • Gothic Architecture: Featuring pointed arches crossing each other in acute angles, ribbed ceilings, and flying arches Gothic cathedrals such as the Notre Dame began to show height and light as their major concerns.
  • Renaissance Architecture: Renaissance architecture was derived from the classical Greek and Roman architecture, hence paved way to simple, neat, and measured framing. Some of the prominent artists during the renaissance period are in the following; Filippo Brunelleschi, and Leon Battista Alberti.
  • Modern Architecture: As a result, modern architecture reformulated new forms and functions through technology and materials. Prominent movements that played a significant role were the International Style: using steel, glass, concrete, and The Bauhaus that is well known for minimalism and functionality.

The Significance of Architecture

Architecture does not merely involve construction of shelters; it is the process of designing space with an ability to modify or even control our existence. Here are some of the key aspects of its significance:

The Significance of Architecture

  • Cultural Representation: It might not be accurately defining architectural symbolism as stating that architecture is indeed a culture bearer, that is, a bearer of culture’s values, beliefs, history, and the likes. For instance we have landmarks like the Taj Mahal in India which symbolize love and features the artistic work of the Mughal empire.
  • Functional Efficiency: Proper aesthetic designs adequately fulfill the roles of buildings through making human activities in them convenient. This includes the control of the light, air, sound, and comfort in relation to the design and layout of the interior.
  • Aesthetic Value: Through architectural design, cities and towns are beautified to form an aesthetically appealing environment. Another important function of a distinct architectural style is the ability of subsequent shocking architecture to visually enrich and distinguish a territory thanks to buildings like Sydney Opera House or Eiffel Tower.
  • Environmental Impact: Green architecture is an architectural technique with the intention of eliminating or reducing the impacts of buildings on the environment. This is why we have witnessed architects incorporating the use of environmentally friendly building materials, use of energy efficient architectural designs, and incorporation of green areas.

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Various Styles of Architecture

The opportunities of architectural constructs are vast with a variety of the styles which could be described having peculiarities and referring to the specific time period. Here are a few prominent ones:

  • Classical Architecture: It has its base in the classical periods of Greece and Rome, and it focuses on matters such as symmetry, columns, pediments.
  • Baroque Architecture: Distinguished by the large-scale, strong masculinism, and stylistic elements such as contrasted light and dark and heavy ornamentation, Baroque is usually associated with such buildings as St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City.
  • Neoclassical Architecture: Like the majority of neoclassical structures, the United States Capitol reflects the ideas of classical Greece and Rome as the ideas of severe shapes, symmetry, and ornamentation are suppressed in favor of dividing lines and measurements.
  • Art Deco Architecture: Often seen in the fountains and water features, Art Deco is quite defined by richness of colours, geometrical people and a strong ornamentation which is evident in the Chrysler Building New York.
  • Modernist Architecture: Being characterized by elements of functionality, minimalism, non-ornate and creating simple forms and clear volumes, modernist architecture does not include elements of ornamentation. Some major contributors to this movement include Le Corbusier and Frank Lloyd Wright, among others.

Postmodern Architecture

Thus, postmodern architecture is quite different from that of the modernist architecture which it replaced; it is a revolt against systematism and austerity, and incorporates features such as color and playful shapes.

Postmodern Architecture

Several examples can be pointed at work, for instance the outside of the Building in Portland it was designed by Michael Graves. Architects are professionals who ensure proper planning and design or structures, especially buildings.

Any construction project involves the architects and they have a crucial role anywhere they are involved. Their responsibilities include:

  • Conceptual Design: Finding the first drafts and concepts that provide the continuity of what the client wants and needs.
  • Detailed Planning: Creating extensive architectural drawings, nailing down details on what materials to use and the design adheres to the code.
  • Project Management: Supervising construction works, organizing relations with the contractors, engineers and other parties in charge of the project to ensure that the project is completed on time at the minimum cost possible.
  • Sustainability: Sustainability features to establish green structures that are energy saving and enhance the optimum use of earth’s resources.

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The Future of Architecture

The Future of Architecture

  • Sustainable Design: Therefore, green architecture deals with the construction of structures that consume less energy and have minimal effects on the surrounding environment. This comprises the use of renewable energy, green roof and use of environmental friendly materials.
  • Smart Buildings: The incorporation of technology in the buildings’ design, like smart home technology, increases comfort, security, and energy saving.
  • Adaptive Reuse: Adaptive reuse of structures for new functions also means the recycling of architecture and the planning-physics, which are the conservation of existing character and the minimization of the creation of new ones.
  • Biophilic Design: Applying biomimicry in the architectural designs to boost health and efficiency in our daily lives. This entails provisions of natural light, provision of greenery, and water features.

Conclusion

Architects and architecture are most accurately and conveniently described as active and versatile professions that determine the appearance of the surrounding environment. Starting from colossal pyramids up to luxurious high-rise buildings, it tells a history of man, our way of life and even our progress. 

Through embracing the more extensive understanding of these principles and the acknowledgment of the role that architecture plays in one’s life, it is possible to design spaces that would not only fulfill the practical purposes but also improve people’s well-being and set them in tune with their surroundings. 

Architects or not, the path to discover architecture can be one that can never end and therefore always offers inspiration and knowledge.

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