Hence Chiquitectos



F3 Arquitectura, “The Virtual Public Square”, published at Fundación Arquia (August 2019).

Necessary Bedfellows

Author: F3 arquitectura

It’s not surprising that conversations with architects produce expressions of perplexity among  people alien to the profession.

And we’re all familiar with the “draw and colour” aphorism used to describe architecture students’ activity while at university.

Both situations are intended to (sarcastically) illustrate the great abyss that separates the world of architecture from society. From a personal point of view, it’s a gap that first begins to appear on the horizon at the end of the first month at university.

Architectural solutions are attained after generating numerous references, processes and technical-artistic reflections which are, in turn, articulated by a series of apparently unrelated determinants. A solution implemented in a building or an urban development plan involves intellectual effort and a long-drawn-out work process. It might be compared to the visible part of an iceberg, the part hidden beneath the surface of the water being the process. If the process were visible, however, that would arouse social interest and narrow the gap between architect and architecture.

Photo by (c) Chiquitectos. Chiquitectos at the National Library

It’s therefore important to stimulate curiosity from an early age.1 Knowledge generates interest. In architecture, we should remember that that interest ought to apply both to the creative, or artistic, part and also to the technical, or service-orientated, part, despite the fact that this latter component is harder to make attractive.

In the quest to generate interest, education is essential. The problem is that in the education system as we know it, rote learning plays a predominant role and sometimes a practical or procedural explanation clarifying a specific point is sorely missed. Why not spend more time explaining about the historical avant-garde movements in secondary education, to help students understand the architecture of our century? And what about the art of abstraction, which has so much to do with the creation of diagrams and graphic communication in architecture? Is it best to teach by asking students to memorise a certain architectural style, or by explaining the process of change until the penny drops?

In today’s hyperconnected society, the online format assumes a huge responsibility with regard to education and dissemination, offering windows and showcases2 that viewers will use to be able to look at an area of knowledge from a new perspective. And it’s fast becoming the means of complementing a standardised education system.

Here are some examples: Yo soy arquitecto posts articles about an architect’s everyday activity and the uncertainties of starting out in the profession; Control y Gestión de Obras details the professional experience of a technical architect; and Inteligencia Colectiva provides information about projects more divergent from traditional architecture.

These blogs demonstrate that we already have the solution for reducing the gap between architect and architecture. Let’s make ourselves heard, let’s create attractive, quality content to arouse interest and build bridges with a critical society, and let’s do it by making the most of Web 2.0.

Text translated by Andrew V. Taylor
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Hence Chiquitectos



F3 Arquitectura, “The Virtual Public Square”, published at Fundación Arquia (August 2019).

La Fundación Caja de Arquitectos se constituye como Fundación cultural privada el 23 de Mayo de 1990, con el objetivo de promover y fomentar fines de carácter cultural, social, asistencial, profesional y formativo en el campo de la arquitectura, la construcción, el diseño, el urbanismo y, en general, de todo aquello relacionado con la actividad de los arquitectos.

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