Most people think architects care only about how their buildings look. But while architects certainly want to create visually beautiful things, they've also expanded the idea of what defines beauty. It's been a hot topic in architecture for, oh, about four hundred years...!
So what does an architect consider beautiful?
The buildings we most revere in the world not only look compelling, they also express something important about their culture, connect to things around them, activate people in unexpected or unique ways, or push our understanding of technology, ideas, or ourselves. Architects call these kinds of non-visual characteristics PERFORMANCE. For a minute, think about architecture like you'd think about cars. No matter how stunning a car looks, no one wants to buy it if it doesn't drive, corner, and stop beautifully too. We expect good architecture to do a whole host of great things.
In this exhibit, take a look at the kinds of spaces, buildings, and environments that architecture students and faculty have designed to test out ideas or change the notion of how architecture can work or be made. Sometimes knowing more about the design gives you a deeper appreciation for the project. But other times it's much more about feeling than knowing: just one image or experience can make the hair stand up on the back of your neck...
Image 1 & 2 > The fusion of body and Carnival, costume tells the untold story of the masquerader in this design from the University of Waterloo. This project was a winner in the ARCHIVE100 Beauty Pageant competition!
Image 3 & 4 > A hostel designed to accomodate musicians.
Image 5 & 6 > Thick-It expands the role of computation in sustainable material practice by mixing high-tech digital protocols with low-tech material realities. This project was a winner in the ARCHIVE100 Beauty Pageant competition!