Small architecture, big importance

Architecture books are known for being comprised mostly of pictures. They are basically picture books for adults. There is not much text, the pictures, however, speak for themselves. In these books one can find inspiration and wisdom of the others. And one can learn from them. The pictures are also beautiful, they induce emotions.

Nowadays, there are many websites about architecture, with nice pictures and renderings. But for me, the books are the real thing. Yes they are heavy and they occupy space. But I love the feeling of having a book in my hand.

Like that one. ‘Architecture outside the centers’ .It is a book published by The Faculty of Art and Architecture. There were only 500 published and I own one of the copies. ‘Architecture outside the centers’ deals with the architecture which was not designed by big names, or built in the main cities. It honours the small architecture. Buildings designed by small offices, buildings in towns and villages. These buildings are not often widely known. They do, however, carry much significance, which is usually hidden, since these buildings themself are hidden from a sight of popular websites and global magazines.

And with that premise, students and lecturers of the faculty made several trips around many countries. They visited Scandinavia, Italy, Switzerland, Chile, Japan, Poland and many others and sought architectural wonders unknown to world. Because architecture is not only about magnificent New York high rises or stunning opera houses. Not only about starchitects such as Bjarke Ingels, Rem Koolhaas or Daniel Libeskind.

Architecure should serve everybody. Architecture is there not only for a businessman from a big city, but also for a priest of a small village.

Architecture is about small village church, retreat on the edge of the world and about school in small provincial town as well. Architecture is about small local offices and architects who grew in the vicinity and who help the local communities.

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Who design remote vineyards in Chile.

Who test eccentric ideas.

Who design remote retreats.

And restaurants on edges of the world.

Who challenge the gravity.

Who do not say no to small projects.

Who shape our world.

That is why I love that book. I can peek behind the curtain of ideas which are small in scale, but huge in their significance.

Is there any building which is not widely known, but you think it should? If you live in a village or town, do you have some local architect working there? Do you think architecture should be practised in small towns? Can architects make a living in a small town? Share your opinions in the comments.

Cheers

Ondrej

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