What makes architecture memorable?
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What makes architecture memorable?

What makes architecture memorable? Why do some buildings leave a lasting impression? Based on many years of travel and research, here is what I think as an architect. Architecture that successfully fuses five basic elements in nature becomes genuinely memorable and timeless. These elements are earth, water, wind, fire, and space. They are identified as Panch Mahabhutta in ancient Indian texts and are the basis for all cosmic creation including human existence. Interplay of these elements is clear as you look at examples of modern, historical, and vernacular architecture featured in my book: Mimamsa Diary.

What constitutes memorable architecture?

Architecture is often believed to be a product of creative geniuses – Frank Llyod Wright, Le Corbusier or Zaha Hadid of the world, which is only partly true. When you look around the world, you notice that majority of structures are designed in the vernacular tradition without the help of architects. The ability to fuse five basic elements does not solely rest with formally trained architects. But please don’t take my word for it. Please explore examples illustrated in Mimamsa Diary and decide for yourself what constitutes memorable architecture.

Emerging trends in architectural design

As you glance through the examples, you will also be introduced to emerging trends in architecture, engineering, and construction technologies such as direct digital manufacturing, mass customization, parametric computing, disaster resistant buildings, off-grid solar systems, CNC based off-site construction, SWARM modeling, minimalism, contextually modern architecture, touchless technologies, additive manufacturing, and 3D printed structures.

Examples of memorable architecture

Here is a list of memorable architectural projects/sites included in this book.

Main campus, IIM Bangalore
Main campus, IIM Bangalore. Photo by Nitinku5021a – Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.

On noteworthy contemporary architecture
• Ice Cube for the 2022 Winter Games
• Mass Customization Through Digital Design, Singapore
• An oasis amid electric grid failure: Puerto Rico Convention Center
• The Starfish has landed: Beijing’s new international airport
• A Trapped Whale: Budapest Architecture
• Big and bold architecture: Copenhagen, Denmark
• American Acropolis: Getty Center, Los Angeles
• Bruce Museum Addition, Greenwich CT
• Contextually Modern Architecture: Grace Farms, New Canaan CT
• 10 Minimalist Architecture: Jane’s Carousel, Brooklyn NY
• Louis Kahn’s Legacy Lives on at IIM Ahmedabad
• Architecture of Interconnectedness: IIM Bangalore

Panch Mahal, Fatehpur Sikri, India
Precursor to modern architecture – Panch Mahal, Fatehpur Sikri, India By Bharat Gami

On noteworthy historical architecture
• A Sustainable Home for a Buddhist Monk, Junagadh, India
• The Stepped Well of Adalaj, India
• The Sun Temple at Modhera, India
• Dholavira: The Rise and Fall of a Harrapan City
• Buddhist Architecture of Borobudur, Indonesia
• A Glimpse of Modern Architecture: Panch Mahal, India
• A Glimpse of Minimalist Architecture: Jantar Mantar
• Formal Structure in Islamic Architecture of Iran and Turkistan
• Formal Structure in Indian Architecture

Indigenous Architecture: Chaco Canyon, New Mexico
Indigenous Architecture: Chaco Canyon, New Mexico. Photo by Bob Adams, Albuquerque, NM, CC BY-SA 3.0
via Wikimedia Commons

On noteworthy vernacular architecture
• Indigenous Architecture of Chaco Canyon
• Hasan Fathy’s Postmodern Vernacular Architecture
• Vernacular Architecture: Thailand’s Floating Market
• Urban Interventions, Bloomfield NJ
• A Sustainable Island Community: Mexcaltitlan

How touchless technologies will cause sensory deprivation
Nuki Smart Lock (Flickr User), CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

On future of architecture
• Will touchless technologies cause sensory deprivation?
• How self-driving cars will make parking structures obsolete
• How self-driving cars will exploit public streets for commercial use
• 3D Printed Concrete Bridge
• 3D printing of entire buildings

This book will be an excellent gift for anyone interested in architecture, engineering, or construction. Please let me know if you would like to review Mimamsa Diary and I will be glad to send you a copy. You can order it only online here if you prefer to do so.

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