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The Use of Traditional Styles in Contemporary Architecture Essay example

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Abstract: Contemporary architects have a wide variety of sources to gain inspiration from, but this has not always been the case. How did modernism effect sources of inspiration? What did post-modernism do to liberate the choice of influences? Now that Contemporary architects have the freedom of choice, how are they using “traditional” styles and materials to inspire them? Even after modernism why are traditional styles still around?


Through the modern era technologies evolved and avant garde was not just a matter of being ahead in you design concepts,. but also in the materials that you use. Modernist designers, in an obsession of moving forward, where always looking to enhance their ideals with new materials. When the modernist bubble burst the post-modern views came forward, embracing styles and techniques of history, architectures where liberated to be able to blend and combine techniques from throughout history. Contemporary architects, in various forms, continue on with the post-modern legacy of taking inspiration from history and seek out to use traditional building methods not only for convenience but also economical, environmental, contextual and symbolic reasons.

One of the key ideas of the modern era was to forge the designs of the future on the corpses of the past, disregarding everything from the last era and moving forward with new ideals and styles. Refining and discarding they shaped, molded and constricted the ideas of design until reaching the pinnacle of minimalism. Creating design with pure aesthetics and reducing an object down to its core fundamental elements. Using the ideas of “less is more” or even “using less for more”, the designs ended up simple and elegant with a focus not in quantit...


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...nd Maintenance in Practice. National Heritage Board.

Asquith, L., and Vellinga, M. 2006. Vernacular architecture in the twenty-first century
Taylor and Frances.

Bertens, J. W., and Bertens, H. 1995. The idea of the post-modern: a history. London, Routledge.

Gauzin-Muller, D., and Favet, N. 2002. Sustainable architecture and urbanism: concepts, technologies, examples. Birkhauser.

Gossel, P., and Leuthauser, G. 2001. Architecture in the twentieth century. Taschen.

Meijenfeldt, E. V., and Geluk, M. 2003. Below ground level: creating new spaces for contemporary architecture. Birkhauser

Meyhofer, D. 1994. Contemporary Japanese Architects. Taschen.

Richardson, P. 2004. New sacred architecture. Laurnce King publishing Ltd.

Stergers, R. 2008. Sacred buildings - a design manual. Birkhauser.

Waterson, R. 1997. The Living House. Thames and Hudson.


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