Until the advent of social sharing, the public merely reacted to architecture while architects shifted between pushing the boundaries of innovative design and reinventing the symbolic architectural elements of the past. With the help of CAD images, architects can expose the public to ground breaking architectural innovations before a structure is built to receive their input into the design process.
In his March 2015 TED talk presentation, Marc Kushner, a highly regarded architect who co-founded the award-winning firm HollwichKushner (HWKN) and serves as the CEO of the online architecture platform Architizer, provided his audience with a whirlwind review of the architectural trends of the past 30 years. Within this context, he explained that historically design trends “swung like a pendulum” from innovative designs, such as the 1970s Brutalism Movement, to the more traditional 1980s designs that used updated symbols that evoke familiar memories and emotions among the public. At the close of the 1980s through the late 1990s, the spirit of cutting edge again took hold as exemplified by Deconstructivism Movement. When the pendulum predictably started to swing back to familiar lines and forms, something had changed – the Internet allowed people to share images of buildings and comment on their design.
Social Sharing and Technology Provide the Foundation between Architects and the Community
When the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain opened in 1997, people shared photos of Frank Gehry’s flowing metallic curvilinear architectural design across the globe. In fact, the public like his design that they demanded new buildings mimic his style that came to define an element of Post Modern architecture. For the first time, the public elevated an architect to star status while exerting a significant influence on architectural design in their communities. As social media grew in popularity, architects began expose the public to CAD renderings of the building they were designing on Facebook and other social media site. This practice allowed the public to have input into the design process as well as to get use to new innovative designs.
Watch Marc Kushner’s TED Talk to learn how this new partnership between architects and the public may affect architectural practice in the near future.