Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Can Architecture engage directly to people's experience?

This year was the only time I realized and added meaning to the definition of Architecture.  Like what I’ve said in my previous essays I would always say that it is a form of art and something that we express like other forms of art but only through structures and buildings. When people look at a building/structure they would either stare at it for a few moments then look away, appreciate its beauty or rather remember something by just looking at it. No experience was engaged to a person if the form is not familiar to them or if they are un-interested.
For me, Architecture directly engages with our inner experience. As what I have said Architecture is just like any other art. It affects the our experience through the design and concept of the Architect.  Most of the part that would greatly affect us is the concept behind that structure. I’d like to give an example on what our professor said. He showed us an example of a building. That building was a museum. When random people looked at it they felt amazed and surprised. They liked the building but the question is did they really understand the true meaning behind it? It even won an award despite it’s unusual characteristics/elements in and out of it. It won because the clients felt connected to it. When the building was shown to some old jewish people they got emotional. It’s like the building connected to their emotions. The tight spaces of the building reminded them of caves they were hiding in from the Nazis. Hearing this, I was simply amazed and thought to myself “I never knew Architecture can let people feel what they have experienced”. I realized that I had this kind of experiences before. I also have this experienced but it is far more pleasant than what the jews experienced. Most of us have experienced nature when we were kids. My parents would take me and brother and walk at a park. The park was full of trees, birds and there was a pond. Then after two years since I saw the park, we went to Fort Bonifacio(back then there weren’t many buildings). I forgot what building we were in but it felt like nature because most of it is made out glass and you can see the outside. Just like the park all the elements are there. Unlike the the first example our professor has given us, mine was the use of glass of the building even if the architect did not shape/form the structure he managed to put a material(glass) that would bring elements of it’s surrounding.
The example our professor given to us explains that even if that building is different from the one they had experience it is the form that affects it. Unlike in most cases that when we see a structure then go back to it again then it engages to our experiences like our houses, offices, school, etc.
As time pass by , Architecture changes the way how they express and how they let people engage their experience in their structures. Nowadays architects go further in expressing their designs in their buildings with more abstract form.
More forms of structure like churches or chapels also engages on our experience but spiritually. Most churches have paintings/artworks on the windows or ceilings. Going inside an old gothic/renaissance church makes you feel you were back in the old century, These factors let us know feel/experience the spiritual part of Architecture. Most of the great works of Architect is inspired by their religion.
I think that this is the most important factor that we should put work into when we are designing our buildings. We must have a connection to our clients so that we could apply it and capture their attention. They usually can’t explain truly what designs the want so we need to befriend them or know more about them . As we understand this truly then we can move on the higher level where we our designs speak to world.  I think this is the most hardest part but it can be your greatest achievement.
I’m really glad that entering this course opened my eyes and let me know this kind of information.  If I were in a different course right now and it’s not related to arts then I would less appreciate the surrounding structures around me. I would like a normal person feeling the same as most people do. Learning this lesson in AESTHETA makes me more curios on what things I haven’t realize yet.

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