5 Design Philosophies in Vogue

From Neolithic mud huts to the sky-piercing Burj Khalifa, there is no static design philosophy that runs through the centuries as far as architecture is concerned. It evolves as the world we live in evolves. Hence, the evolution of architecture over the centuries is quite like holding a mirror to the progression of civilization, society, human aspirations, and technology. This transformative and adaptive nature of architecture is quite fascinating.  

 As society advances, architectural philosophies also transform. Innovative and adaptive architectural designs of veteran architects encapsulate and reflect a century’s changes. For instance, Walter Gropius’s Bauhaus movement has had a significant impact on modern architecture. Apart from merging art with technology, it introduced elements like minimalism, functionalism, open floor plans, etc. Similarly, other design philosophies have emerged in construction techniques and materials. In this article, let’s take a sneak peek into five of the modern design philosophies currently in vogue.

#1.Responsible architecture

Architects do have social responsibility. Beyond creating beautiful spaces, architects shoulder the responsibility of leaving a positive impact on the world, particularly in the lives of the less privileged. This is where the concept of responsible architecture comes in. Humanitarian concerns take center stage in this philosophy. Take, for example, the case of Catalytic Action, a London-based non-profit design studio. They have designed and built a playground in a Lebanese School for Syrian refugee children. Notably, the studio involved children in every stage of the design process, ensuring the well-being of the underprivileged is an important element of socially responsible architecture.

#2.Sustainability and ecofriendliness

Sustainability and ecofriendliness are two major elements of today’s design philosophy. Innovative and green energy alternatives such as green roofs and solar designs have become integral parts of every sketch. Likewise, responsive governments bring mandatory certifications like the  LEED to ensure buildings adhere to stringent environmental standards.

Another sustainable design philosophy gaining momentum is self-sufficient buildings that can produce recycled water, and energy through innovative and green technologies. All these advancements help in reducing the carbon footprint.

#3.Low-cost architecture

We can better discuss low-cost architecture by marveling at Balkrishna Doshi’s design philosophy. Low-cost housing was the forte of  Doshi. Recognizing the dire need for low-cost housing in a developing country like India, he created economical design solutions that are beautiful and efficient. His creation, the Aranya low-cost housing in Indore to house the poor is nothing short of a cost-effective architectural marvel.

#4. Biophilic design

Lloyd, the renowned architect once said, “ Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you”. Later, he encapsulated this design philosophy in a concept called organic architecture. Over the period, it grew and developed, Slowly, the architectural community rechristened it as ‘Biophilic Design’. Most of the modern buildings and landscapes started following biophilic design. Architecture cherishes the fact that there is peace and tranquility when we live in unison with nature.

#5. Adaptive reuse

 Creating new functional living spaces from old and dilapidated structures is one of the growing design philosophies of recent decades. It minimizes the environmental impact and reduces the wastage of precious raw materials.

Wrapping Up

Change is the only constant. Whenever there is civilizational change, unfazed architecture comes up with innovative design philosophies that ensure the betterment of humanity and the sustainability of nature.

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