23 septiembre 2014

Architects & Pop Culture

Do architects must be part of the pop culture or at least be aware of it?

I've asked myself that question the other day when I was with a partner and the song "Safe and Sound" started to play on the radio, the first thing I said was: "The second most popular song after "Get Lucky"; then my partner said: "Excuse me? I don't listen to that kind of music. I'm not connected to the world outside (architecture)". Then the conversation was over and I started talking about the World Cup.

I respect the opinion of my colleague and my own music preferences are more "underground" (90s Britpop), but that night I thought in something special about some colleagues architects and some civil engineers; the belief of being isolated in a bubble away from the world around. I'm not generalizing is my personal opinion about this subject, in fact being "special" and different is what make the architecture to break canons and designs patterns. What I think is dangerous is the personal isolation from the "cultural enviroment" around us.

Ok, today pop culture sucks to us (wherever you are reading this post). But when you where young, did your parents tell you that your culture sucked too? Remember that old episode in "The Simpsons" where Homer was outdated in his musical preferences? Well, it is happening to you (And me too!) But, unlike our parents or Homer Simpson, we have internet at our disposal. Now typing a few words in Google let us know more in seconds. And even can gather information about places we tough are not at our reach. Of course that depends in the level of your resources and "curiosity". In design you can also watch and see very interesting things.

Today technology let you see projects around the world
But nothing compare to travel. At least a weekend trip to another city from where you are is enough to realize that you can't be "enclosed in a bubble". You will realize that watching other designs in other landscapes you will feel that maybe your are wrong in some subjects about architecture and the environment you live or perhaps you will feel the environment is wrong; that depend on you. I can tell you beacuse I did it. When you keep moving the inspiration moves with you.

On top of all this I've wrote: Why I know about today music? Why am I playing current videogames? Am I more/less Architect for knowing that?

PS.: I worte this post on Febrary/2014, the mention of  the World Cup  was because it was about to happen in June. Sorry the delay.

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