In terms of duration and complexity, the history of architecture is like that of humanity. The Neolithic period, roughly 10,000 BC, or when humans stopped living in caves and began deciding how they wanted their homes to feel and look, might be considered the original beginning of architecture. The architecture we’re discussing today is frequently evaluated in terms of sight and is subject to visual perception. However, the desire to create an architectural masterpiece was motivated by much more than just the desire to create something beautiful.
Even though architecture has proven to be a variety of things, including cozy, elegant, modern, brutal, easily recognizable, and vernacular, one of its most attractive qualities is its ability to reflect the spirit of the time in a way that may be even more significant than how we typically observe it to occur with art. The considerable material presence of architecture, which serves as the most tangible indicator of societal change, justifies the parallelism between architecture’s history and humanity’s.
Observing the structures built in various locations and eras without using words helps us understand the development of architecture and our past. Architecture served as a physical representation of human behavior, further highlighted by the continuous effort to preserve some of the architectural histories while letting the rest deteriorate and fade.
At the beginning of the 19th century, many significant events occurred in the arts and architecture. The transition from classical to modern architecture is often seen as starting with Art Nouveau. This is for a variety of reasons, but a statement made by Louis Sullivan (the “father” of skyscrapers and inextricably linked to Art Nouveau) serves as a practical illustration: Style comes after the function.
The entire framework of architectural design was turned upside down by modern (or modernist) architecture. It brought functionalism and refined architectural form to the highest extremes simultaneously as some of the major cultural movements, like the Bauhaus and De Stijl. It is possible that by removing all beauty from the architecture, it was both liberated and confining (by the universal language).
Modernism was one of the most significant changes in architectural design, expression, and styles, despite the latter and the fact that its reach is still somewhat vague even today. Its relevance comes from the fact that it continues to influence architects today, both positively and negatively, and of course, from the fact that it was able to provoke a critical response in the form of postmodernism.
Types of Architecture
Architecture is continuously developed to meet the needs of a specific person or group. Economic law forbids architects from copying their artistic colleagues and creating works for which there is no demand or merely a prospective market. As a result, there are many forms of architecture that may be categorized based on social formations and the function of the patron in the society. Domestic, religious, governmental, recreational, welfare and educational, and commercial and industrial kinds are the ones that will be covered here:
For the social unit—the person, family, their dependents—both human and animal—domestic architecture is created. It offers protection and shelter for the most basic requirements as well as occasionally for business, industry, or agricultural pursuits that benefit the family unit rather than the society. The fundamental needs of residential architecture are straightforward: a place to sleep, prepare food, eat, and maybe work; a location with some light and shelter from the elements. The only requirements are a single room with solid walls and a roof, a door, a window, and a fireplace; everything else is optional.
The history of architecture is more concerned with religious structures than with any other kind since, in most ancient societies, the church or temple was the most expressive, longest-lasting, and most significant structure in any community due to the universal and high appeal of religion. The typology of religious architecture is complicated because no one religion has any fundamental characteristics, such as those that define domestic architecture, and because each religion’s functions involve a wide variety of activities that alter as societal patterns change.
Administration, law, and delivering justice are the three fundamental responsibilities of government, which are more essential than religious beliefs. The nature of the interaction between the governing and the governed, however, affects the architectural requirements.
Governmental duties can be carried out in the ruler’s home when they are concentrated in the hands of a single person, but when they are distributed among many people and formed as specialized activities, they become complex and require separate institutions. However, as the operational requirements of government may be satisfied in any protected place with a realistic space for discussion and administration, there are no fundamental formal answers for governmental design.
Instead, communicative functions derived from the ideologies of the various political organizational systems (monarchy, theocracy, democracy, etc.) and from the traditions of the different governmental positions create a distinct kind (law courts, assembly houses, city halls, etc.). The expressive capabilities of architecture are frequently used by governments who exert power through force rather than through agreement to emphasize their authority; these governments create structures with an architectural form that is out of proportion to their contribution to the community.
Religious symbolism is used in architecture in those where the monarch has supreme characteristics. Democratic governments have the duty to reflect in its architecture the goals of the community itself, a challenging undertaking in the modern day when the society may not be homogenous enough to agree on how to represent itself or small enough to do so.
Only when they are formalized and must allow for both active and passive participation (sporting activities, dramatic performances, musical acts, etc.), or for social involvement in fundamentally private pleasures (baths, museums, libraries), only some recreational activities require architecture. Recreational architecture has had the most constant shape throughout the history of any style.
Diversions may alter, but much like in household design, stability is provided by human physiology. They must be able to hear and see comfortably if their involvement is passive. They must be given areas appropriate for the activities they have selected if their involvement is active. In most societies, places of relaxation have their roots in religious ceremonies, but they quickly become independent, and any mention of religion is either toned down or removed from their design.
Welfare and educational Architecture
The main institutions that support public welfare are those that offer resources for utilities, public safety, health, and education. Some of these tasks are carried out by the state and the church, but because they are not primarily religious or political in nature, they may call for different architectural solutions, especially in urban environments. However, because the level of acceptance of responsibility for the welfare of society varies among social systems, a consistent typology of this architecture cannot be created across history.
Commercial and Industrial Architecture
The primary requirements of business and industry are met by structures for trade, transportation, communication, manufacture, and the generation of power. These requirements mainly were largely undefined in the past. They were either accommodated inside domestic architecture or in structures primarily distinguishable from domestic kinds by size.
Only more space was needed for shops, banks, lodgings, guild halls, and industries than could fit inside a house. Naturally, bridges, warehouses, and other non-habitational constructions were specialized from the start and endured the Industrial Revolution with minor modifications. Both the typology and the methods of architecture were significantly impacted by the Industrial Revolution.
The development of the machine and mass production caused economic life to transition from the household setting into one where machines and processes heavily dominated people, forcing the construction of structures that were more specialized and numerous than all the historical forms combined.
Although all the kinds cannot be explored here, their significance for architecture may be seen in the categorization into which they can be put.
- exchange (office buildings, stores, markets, banks, exchanges, warehouses, exhibition halls)
- Transportation like roads, bridges, tunnels; railway stations, sea and air transport and the dispensing of fuel in garages, hangars, and other storage facilities
- communication like structures for the transmission and reception of telephone, telegraph, radio, television, and radar communication, for the printing and distribution of newspapers, magazines, books, and other reading materials
- production by mines, factories, laboratories, food-processing plants
- power through dams, generating plants, fuel storage, processing, and distribution installations.
The Importance of Architecture
The primary purpose of architecture is to construct the physical surroundings in which people live, but it also plays a significant role in our society. It serves as a metaphor for how we perceive the world and how we see ourselves. Although the idea of shelter is relatively straightforward, the initial architectural designs of structures were influenced by the local climate, the materials that were readily accessible, and the social attitudes of the people who constructed them. The styles changed as the globe got more interconnected, yet even in contemporary architecture, it is crucial to respect unique cultural features in architectural design.
Qualifications of an Architect
- Math; Calculus, geometry, and trigonometry are used by architects to create and carry out their architectural designs. These abilities are used by professionals when calculating angles, scaling drawings, and assessing a project’s structural soundness.
- Communication; To determine the goal, scope, and expectations of any project, architects must consult with their customers. In order to reach new clients, these experts must also communicate with engineers and subcontractors and be excellent marketers. Additionally, having effective communication skills enables architects to manage workplace problems and inspire colleagues.
- Problem-solving; Architects must develop solutions to accomplish the needs that clients specify for them. For instance, experts might need to expand a homeowner’s interior area to make room for a growing family.
- Design; Architects must provide designs that are both visually beautiful and functionally appropriate for each customer. Experts should be detail-oriented designers with innovative thinking in order to achieve this.
- Leadership; Architecture career experts can manage staff members and subcontractors on their project teams with the use of leadership abilities. Managers in the architectural industry must hire and manage new employees as well as settle workplace conflicts.
- Organizational skills; An architect must be highly organized because their profession entails contracts, extensive documentation, email correspondence, plans, renderings/drawings, and other complex and digital materials. In the corporate sector, it is vital to maintain accurate records that cover all of the significant aspects of a project (such as cost analysis, materials utilized, project specifics, and progress tracking).
- Visualization skills; The success of a professional architect depends on having exact perception abilities and the ability to understand how the components of a structure relate to one another. In addition to having good sketching abilities, they must be able to visualize how the finished construction will look, including how the building will be placed within a city and its interior design. Drawing by hand is the ideal artistic medium for quickly imagining how the structure will appear. Finally, an architect needs to be able to articulate their vision to clients and team members.
- Creativity; Having an artistic flare and a creative eye is crucial to the profession since the design, structure, and layout of a building determine its overall look. The final product should effortlessly combine form and utility, taking into account the environmental effect of the structure’s footprint or architectural modifications, and have an excellent aesthetic value.
- Technical experience; An architect must keep up with the most recent tools and technologies in the field, even if it requires continuous education and modern architectural methods, given the always-changing world of digital technology and software upgrades. It is highly desirable to have intermediate to advanced computer abilities as using applications like CADD that is essential when drafting designs and BIM in producing layouts for building information modelling.
Primary tasks of an Architect
- Provide guidance to those responsible for creating plans, renderings, drawings, and other necessary documentation.
- Give a project’s expected cost and construction duration as preliminary estimates.
- Supervision and management of construction contracts and related documents (e.g., building codes, fire regulations, zoning laws, and other related ordinances, such as wheelchair accessibility)
- To ascertain the project’s needs, specs, and goals, meet with the customers.
- For building contractors, engineers, design companies, and associated workers, draught and create contractual documentation
- Draw scaled diagrams (either with computer software or by hand)
- Create structural requirements
- Leading new projects and accounts through marketing initiatives and giving presentations
- Visit construction sites to verify that detailed architectural designs are being followed throughout each stage of development.
- Work together with people who are employed in relevant fields, including civil engineers, interior designers, design professionals, landscape architects, and urban and regional planners.
- Senior architects and those with experience may also help customers in a variety of ways, such as assisting them in choosing contractors, negotiating building contracts, or even getting construction bids.
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