Founder & Editor in Chief of this wonderful thing called ArchDaily :)
Graduate Architect. Jury, speaker, curator, programmer, m.c., and anything that is required to spread our mission across the world.
You can follow me on Instagram/Twitter as @dbasulto, or curating our Instagram at @ArchDaily.
When we started ArchDaily 14 years ago, we wanted to represent it through the archetypal image of a building, in an isometric view, blue color. After a quick sketch, we had the first version of our logo, which iterated throughout the years, adapted to diverse applications from wooden trophies to stickers, becoming a staple brand among architects.
When we decided to join Architonic, we saw a big opportunity to combine our expertise on curating projects and products, enriching the quality of the content we deliver to millions of professionals and enthusiasts around the world, with one vision: to help everybody who is part of architecture to do a better job, having a positive impact in our environment.
As complementary platforms we look at this big challenge from each one's lenses: project inspiration, materials knowledge, product research and specification.
After a 2020 that will be remembered as a point of inflection for our global society, 2021 only reminded us that the fast phase of change was here to stay, and that a new attitude towards the way we see and embrace the world was needed. A challenge that we took with optimism.
As our world evolves at an unprecedented pace, the challenges that come with it are becoming more and more complex. The questions faced by the cities and networks of our global world, the physical and virtual environments where our evolution takes place, are making architecture more relevant than ever.
The issues of the built environment are no longer exclusive to the incumbents who build and design it and have become transversal questions in our society. From the citizens who question the quality of their public spaces to the self-trained builder erecting a tiny house in the woods, to the homeowners using an app to codesign their interiors during lockdown, we want to have a saying and we want to take action. Why does architecture have to be so uncertain, so distant?
Our mission is to deliver inspiration, knowledge and tools to help architects and everybody in the industry of architecture to do more and better, in order to face the fastly evolving challenges and complexities of our built environment.
Our curators are constantly scouting and selecting projects from all over the world showing a comprehensive image of the constant innovations and references in architectural design, thus presenting you with the best projects by the best architects.
But as we prepare for a challenging 2021 I want to share our reflections on these intense moments, which are not just a consequence of the pandemic, but also of the diverse and much needed social and cultural changes that have been unfolding during the last years. As a young and diverse Internet company, with a conscious and globally distributed team, we have been working during the last years to embrace change, as we think it is one of the attitudes that can prepare us for a world that is changing fast, on the intersection of two of the industries that are shaping society today: Internet and the built environment. To be ready for change is not easy, as we need to constantly challenge ourselves and our egos, and do things in new ways, in new contexts. But as 2020 demanded, we were ready.
We spoke with Beat Guhl, CEO of Sky-Frame, during the Swiss Bau fair – one of the largest events in the materials industry. Sky-Frame produces frameless sliding window systems; vital components to achieve an effective and efficient transparency in architectural projects. The company is constantly pushing for technical innovation and works closely with architects to help achieve fluid spatial concepts.
After going through diverse education programs, that included the AA in London, the Chulalongkorn Mahawitthayalai Architectural School in Bangkok, and the University of Illinois in Chicago, Clément started his career at OMA, “a long therapy [...] to discover who I was”. During his career at OMA, he became the director of OMA France, participating in projects such as the Caen Library, the Parc des Expositions in Toulouse, the Lab City CentraleSupélec, among others.
The practice is structured as a laboratory, researching, informing and generating architecture and urbanism in all its forms and sizes. From a series of carefully designed interiors for restaurants, playing with a diverse palette of materials, to large scale multifunctional buildings and master plans, adapting to the fast-changing needs of society.
When we started this project 15 years ago, we knew that the expansion of cities would become the biggest challenge for humanity, and that architects, with better access to knowledge, had the ability to radically improve the quality of life of billions of people. That is why we envisioned ArchDaily as a global source of inspiration, knowledge, and tools to help architects face this challenge. Our carefully curated, unbiased, categorized database of projects, materials and knowledge, paired with a stream of globally diverse content, now serves more than 650,000 people every day.
As our industry is on the verge of a rapid digital transformation, it is our responsibility to understand how technology will integrate inspiration, product sourcing, project delivery, construction and even the management of the life cycle of buildings, enabling architects to do more and better, in an efficient and sustainable way, to face the big challenges ahead.
ArchDaily has become one of the 1,000 most visited websites on the Internet, according to the latest Alexa Internet ranking -- an Amazon-owned company that measures the popularity of all Internet sites.
More than 360,000 users visit our flagship English-speaking platform every day, which when combined with our network of Spanish, Portuguese, and Chinese sites, creates a daily global audience of 650,000 people: the most visited architecture network in the world.
But why is this relevant? Why do these numbers matter?
When we started this project 15 years ago, we knew that the expansion of cities would become the biggest challenge for humanity, and that architects, with better access to knowledge, had the ability to radically improve the quality of life of billions of people. That is why we envisioned ArchDaily as a global source of inspiration, knowledge, and tools to help architects face this challenge. A carefully curated, objective, categorized database of projects and knowledge, paired with a stream of globally diverse content.
But architecture is bigger than architects, and it has become - to our joy - a transversal subject. We have all, as a society, understood the importance of our built environment, how it can shape our mindset, improve our well being, form our education, and drive opportunities and set the grounds for a more egalitarian society. Moreover, a bounty of changes in urban and economic dynamics is also molding architecture into something more relevant, more recognizable, and more democratic. That is why our profession and craft are permeating into Netflix and Apple TV shows, becoming an object of admiration on Instagram, and representing something that you can dream of, aspire to, and work towards catalogues such as Pinterest.
As we all #slowdown to reduce the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, I want to share with you how we as a global company have faced this situation, and what we are doing (together with you!) to keep us, the architecture community, informed and connected. It is our responsibility.
Chilean architecture has a strong relation to the unique geography and climate of the country. Germán del Sol is recognized as one of the most prolific Chilean architects working with these demanding conditions, with projects across the country that enhance and rediscover the natural landscape, through architecture that uses natural materials, local techniques, and a profound sense of the place.
Photographer and filmmaker Pablo Casals-Aguirre revisits the Remota Lodge in Patagonia, one of the most celebrated projects by Germán del Sol, in a video that is able to transmit not only the static relationship with nature, but also the experience of inhabiting the landscape from the building.
The wild landscape of the Patagonian plains covers also the roofs of the buildings. The roofs concrete slabs are coated with the same synthetic asphalt membrane and a carpet of wild grasses 2 feet high [...] The ever changing light of Patagonia enters the building through the sequence of vertical cuts of the windowpanes. Then it surrounds big concrete or wooden pillars, and slides along the ceilings wooden trellises that hang well under the concrete slab. - Germán del Sol
ArchDaily had a chance to visit Alfredo Thiermann (ThiermannCruz) at his Berlin studio, to learn more about his work at the intersection of practice, research, and his passion for music. Alfredo studied architecture in Chile at Universidad Católica, and received his Master's degree from Princeton. He started his practice at an early stage with a series of experimental small scale projects, the "artifacts", always in collaboration with diverse professionals. From scenographies to acoustic installations, these artifacts are structures that carry a meaning, for when "building something becomes necessary to understand a broader situation, a situation that you cannot describe through other means, you need to embody it, and therefore this construction becomes a condensation of political, cultural trajectories that each of these projects wanted to tell."
For its 9th edition, the Moscow Urban Forum continues to consolidate as one of the world’s most relevant urban conferences, bringing together a diverse group of architects, urbanists, city mayors, government officials, economists, developers, academics, citizens, and professionals from diverse fields and nationalities.
While Pierre de Meuron’s main keynote puts focus on ongoing developments in the city of Moscow, by showcasing the ambitious scheme to redevelop the Badaevskiy Brewery, the lectures and presentations acknowledged the diverse areas that shape the city, including topics such as mental health, lifestyle of the millennial generation, evolution of work, or delivery platforms. The evolution of the role of the architect was present, with a growing number of professionals now working on startups in the tech, infrastructure, real estate, construction, and mobility sectors, the new city makers.
As architects, we are on an endless journey of discovery, open to new experiences that fuel our creativity. We explore our surroundings and beyond, we travel to expand our views and open our mind, being often exposed to the unexpected. All these experiences are stored in our mental hard drive until the inspiration moment comes, drawing random non-linear connections between them and putting us into a state of divergent thinking, from where new ideas appear.
“The greenest building is the one that is already built." (Carl Elefante, FAIA)
The world’s urban population will double by 2050, and cities need to come up with sustainable ways to accommodate this mass movement. We often see projects being built as quickly as possible to support growth, however, rapid growth often leads to cities and buildings that lack originality.
A smarter and more sustainable solution is to increase the density of existing centers, as well as to recover existing structures through refurbishment and repurposing. But, turning something old into something new is a challenging process — it requires a bold vision and a rigorous commitment to design.