Monday, June 4, 2018

Who are Architects?

I have had conversations with various people around Bangalore city - especially people who have been residents of Bangalore for a long time about how the city has changed in the last 2 decades. " It used to be greener, cooler and not as dusty", they said. I have been complaining from the day I got to Bangalore as well - about the chaotic traffic, about how dusty the air is, about how people just don't think twice before cutting trees.

Yesterday, in a discussion involving 3 Architects and an automobile designer, the automobile designer asked, "How can you guys complain? Aren't you guys responsible for all the development in the city?" He was particularly critical of the work Architects were doing. He spoke about how Architects were obsessed with aesthetics and personalising space for each client that we forget about the city. "Is there any research within Architecture done aiming at this? "

The rest of us on the table didn't agree. We blamed the government, the real estate agents, the planners etc. "The growth isn't planned, all the work we do is limited to smaller sites", the other Architects sitting across the table said.

But the more I thought  about it, the more I realize that it could be us as well. How different was the construction methodology 10 years back to the one now? Even with all the research going into green and sustainable architecture, what is the percentage that uses it? How do we react when a client wants to cut a tree within their plot? How much do we really care?

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