Reinier de Graaf, OMA:
architect, verb. The New Language of Building
Wednesday, 1 November 2023, 18:30
Video by Reframe
How to build world-class, award winning, creative, innovative, sustainable, livable and beautiful spaces that foster a sense of place and wellbeing?
architect, verb aims to debunk myths projected onto architecture by the outside world – a rebuttal of doctrines which have been applied to architecture over the last twenty years. The incorporation of extraneous terms such as "livability", "innovation" or "wellbeing" into the glossary of architecture is part of an ongoing trend in which the language to debate architecture is less and less the architects' own, and more and more that of outside forces imposing outside expectations. Once a profession known for its manifestos, architecture finds itself increasingly forced to adopt ever-more extreme postures of virtue, held accountable by the world of finance, the social sciences or the medical sector. During the book presentation, Reinier de Graaf and Sam Chermayeff will delve into the language and forces shaping architecture expectations and discipline.
Dunya Bouchi, Managing Director, ANCB The Aedes Metropolitan Laboratory, Berlin
Book presentation and discussion
Reinier de Graaf, Partner, OMA, Rotterdam
Sam Chermayeff, Founder June14 and Sam Chermayeff Office, Berlin
Followed by Q&A, book signing and reception. The publication will be on sale during the event.
ABOUT THE BOOK
The New Language of Building
by Reinier de Graaf
272 pages | English
Be it sci-fi megastructures in the Middle East or historicist towns in the UK, new projects are invariably marketed with the same buzzwords: "world-class", "award-winning", "creative", "innovative", "sustainable", "livable", "beautiful" or fostering "a sense of place and wellbeing". What is the significance of such terms? When does a building warrant the label "world-class"? Why is one city more "livable" than the next? What is the meaning of "innovation" in architecture? And what building can credibly claim to improve anyone's "wellbeing"?
If de Graaf’s debut book Four Walls and a Roof was about debunking myths within the architecture profession, architect, verb aims to debunk myths projected onto architecture by the outside world – a rebuttal of doctrines which have been applied to architecture over the last twenty years. The book includes a satirical dictionary of "Profspeak", the corporate language of consultants, developers and planners, from "active listening" to "zoom readiness".
ABOUT REINIER DE GRAAF
Reinier de Graaf is a Dutch architect and writer. He is a partner in the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) and the co-founder of its think-tank AMO. Reinier is the author of Four Walls and a Roof: The Complex Nature of a Simple Profession, the novel The Masterplan, and the recently published architect, verb. He lives in Amsterdam.
ABOUT SAM CHERMAYEFF
Sam Chermayeff is an architect, designer and teacher undertaking projects worldwide. Sam is a founding partner and director in the architecture firm June14 Meyer-Grohbrügge & Chermayeff and Sam Chermayeff Office. With offices in New York and Berlin, the studios work on a wide range of design-driven projects ranging from larger multiunit residential buildings in Berlin, several small houses in New York and furniture all over.