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Rem Koolhaas

Rem Koolhaas and his views on the failures in architecture

The world as we know it today is an enigma to our imagination and a reality of the needs it requires for a successful progression of society. We’ve seen that there is an unfortunate dislike among few people of different demographics, and there is a common tendency of individuals of different backgrounds not wanting to socially or culturally exchange. A problem that must be addressed if we want to incorporate an enormous multiplicity to our society and solve crucial problems of our presence. In an interview with Rem Koolhaas – Pritzker prize winner and Dutch Architect- with the dean of Harvard Graduate School of Design at the 2016 AIA convention, he talks about a few of these problems and what we must do to direct the course towards a positive outcome.

Among a few of the problems that Rem Koolhaas discusses in the convention, he centres the talk around globalization and the importance of paying homage to earlier cultures while integrating new mentalities into the mix. As an example, he mentions the entry of Syrian refugees that are coming into Europe, and how it presents more opportunities rather than problems. The importance of valuing the capabilities of these highly educated individuals that are coming in to energize parts of the cities that are less inhibited and providing a sort of incitement to new possibilities that may otherwise never arise. He mentions that one of the successes he has in his office is the cross-communication of different designers and encouraging an ongoing dialect that incites difference; creating problems that need solutions.

“Architecture has a serious problem today in that people who are not alike don’t communicate. I’m actually more interested in communicating with people I disagree with than people I agree with. To read more click here.

There is a narrative storytelling when a building is designed, a story that ensembles the country’s or the people’s views and experiences and having a wider, more multi-cultured group that can bring more experiences into the creative thinking and problem-solving process will deliver an array of current and future possibilities. It is in fact known, that Rem is a provocateur who likes to break the rules of established conventions, but can’t it be that it is an ingredient that may be needed in order to break some of these cultural and design barriers? He states that most people tend to fear change, whatever that change may be, but if we as a society were more receptible to transformation, we could discover untapped potential crucial to us.

The essence of cultural presence is that everyone belongs to many communities. There is an unbelievable multiplication of communities, which therefore creates a multiplication of different points where groups of people are able to define and constitute themselves.

Of course, Rem Koolhaas ‘s approach to this matter may seem a little irrational, a radical philosophy if you will, but deeply rooted it does open the discussion of what the right steps might be to grow. We’ve learned by looking at the history of brilliant and controversial minds that their approach may not necessarily be the correct one, and while widely unpopular with the people, it just may spur a genius and a bring forth an unnoticed idea. Society must be more socially driven and has to give opportunities for those that deserve them, regardless of the nationality and economic means. What are your thoughts on this matter?



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