Architekt Kjetil Trædal Thorsen, Snøhetta Architects, Oslo, Norwegen

©: Snøhetta Architects

Buildings and architecture

Buildings are not automatically architecture. Not even when designed by architects. For a building to become architecture it needs to consciously fulfil a series of inherent demands embedded in the very definition of architecture.
Contemporary complexities seem to be met by naïve simplifications, humourless populist conclusions, random historical references and extreme political ideologies protecting selfish benefits, by an increasing number of people in Europe.
The complexities of architecture and the design of our physical surroundings are disappearing down the same drain, ultimately leading to indifferent objects only fulfilling simple primary functions such as tempered interiors based on illogical comfort paramters, or in some slightly more inspired cases, sufficient daylight for its users.
These commodity objects lack any ambition to fulfil urgent societal needs. Environmental approaches, innovative solutions, experimental research, involvement of inhabitants, value for money and not the least, aesthetical expression are deemed unnecessary obstructions to self-protective environments with limited insight or interest in the development of our common future.
As the arts, architecture is part of the intellectual historical context of critical thinking in the service of society. The space needed to accomplish a continuous state of reinvention in architecture can only be supplied by a conscious political leadership, supporting further evolution of collective and individual sensitivity towards each other and our globe.
I urge the city of Graz, my second home town, to become part of future solutions in its architectural policy. I urge Graz not to become part of the problem.

16. + 17.11.2023