1st Edition

Approaching Architecture Three Fields, One Discipline

Edited By Miguel Guitart Copyright 2023
    302 Pages 164 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    302 Pages 164 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The study of the architectural discipline suffers from an increasing disconnect between its teaching and its professional practice. In this edited collection, 18 architectural voices address this disconnect by reflecting on the ways in which they exercise the architectural discipline in three ways: research, teaching, and practice. This book argues that the totality of activities encompassed by the architectural profession can be best fulfilled when reconsidering the critical interactions between these three fields in the everyday exercise of the profession.

    Split into three parts, "Architecture as Research," Architecture as Pedagogy," and "Architecture as Practice," each section focuses on one of these three dimensions while establishing continuity with the other two. In doing so, the book not only favors a more fulfilling interaction between academia and the profession but also reinforces the implementation of design theory and research in everyday teaching and practice. The contributions come from 18 teams of architects operating from geographically diverse locations, including Pezo von Ellrichshausen in Chile, Kengo Kuma & Associates in Japan, Barclay & Crousse in Peru, Shift in Iran, Heinrich Wolff in South Africa, and People’s Architecture Office in China, opening the design conversation to larger contexts and framing continuity and inclusion in time.

    Written for students, instructors, and practitioners alike, the inspiring reflections in this volume encourage readers to grow as architects and play an instrumental role in transforming the built environment.


    The Necessary Impracticality of Research, Circuity of Pedagogy, and Resistance of Practice

    Nader Tehrani

    Approaching Architecture: Three Fields, One Discipline

    Miguel Guitart


    PART I. Architecture as Research

    1. Normal Inventory

    Mauricio Pezo and Sofía von Ellrichshausen / Pezo von Ellrichshausen

    2. Fitness on Connected Fields: Distance, Time, and Conversation

    Balázs Bognár / Kengo Kuma & Associates

    3. The Substrate of Architectural Experimentation: Tradition and Architectural Design

    Luis Pancorbo, Inés Martín-Robles / Pancorbo Arquitectos

    4. How Much Room for a Dream in Tehran?

    Nashid Nabian and Rambod Eilkhani / [SHIFT] / Fereshteh Assadzadeh

    5. Building Knowledge in Interdisciplinary Design

    Helena Casanova and Jesús Hernández / Casanova&Hernandez

    PART II. Architecture as Pedagogy

    6. Teaching Architecture: At the Vanguard of Rearguard

    Luis Suárez Mansilla and Asier Santas Torres / Suárez Santas Arquitectos

    7. Fun Palaces on the Buffalo Outer Harbor

    Julia Jamrozik / Kempster Jamrozik

    8. A Certain Praise for Drawings: Sources, Goals, and Tools

    Rubén Alcolea and Jorge Tárrago / Alcolea & Tárrago

    9. The Trellis at Silo City: A Case Study for Design-Build in a Post-Industrial Context

    Nicholas B. Rajkovich, Joyce Hwang, and Laura Garófalo

    10. Constructing Space

    Jeannette Kuo / Karamuk Kuo

    PART III. Architecture as Practice

    11. From Practice: Landscape, Memory, Technology

    Jean Pierre Crousse and Sandra Barclay / Barclay & Crousse

    12. Transformative Impact: Rethinking the Structure of Inclusive Practices

    Leighton Beaman / General Architecture Collaborative

    13. Unsanctioned Architecture

    James Shen / People's Architecture Office

    14. Developing an Architecture of Consequence

    Heinrich Wolff / Wolff Architects

    15. How to Build a House

    Fernanda Canales


    Reason, Emotion, and Experience: The Rational and the Existential in Architecture

    Juhani Pallasmaa


    Kengo Kuma / Kengo Huma & Associates



    Miguel Guitart is an architect, author, and academic. Guitart is Assistant Professor at the Department of Architecture at the University at Buffalo-SUNY, Buffalo, New York. Guitart obtained his PhD in Architecture from ETSAM, Polytechnic University of Madrid, and his Master’s degree from the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University as a J. W. Fulbright Scholar. His research focuses on the experiential intersections between matter, perception, and memory. Guitart has been awarded by the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA), the Architecture + Design Program at the New York State Council for the Arts (NYSCA), and the UB Humanities Institute as a Faculty Fellow. He is the author of Behind Architectural Filters: Phenomena of Interference (Routledge, 2022).

    "Approaching Architecture: Three Fields, One Discipline sets out to demonstrate that expanding the fields of practice, pedagogy, and research reveals the depth and value of architecture as a discipline. Equally impressive is the global representation throughout the book. It is a timely work and one that will certainly not be confined to those three fields.''

    Marc J. Neveu, Faculty Head of Architecture, The Design School, Arizona State University

    ''Teaching, research, and practice in architecture are always unstable. They overlap, feeding each other, but are permanently out of sync – generating continuous movement between them in a restless circuit, a kind of spinning machine that produces what we call the architect. Approaching Architecture offers a kaleidoscopic set of insights into this relentless creative mechanism.''

    Beatriz Colomina, Howard Crosby Butler Professor of the History of Architecture, Princeton University School of Architecture

    ''Approaching Architecture: Three Fields, One Discipline is an important contribution to discourse regarding the hyper-specialization and the continued siloization of architecture as research, teaching, and practice. Guitart has curated a thoughtful and engaging set of arguments, provocations and reflections that work collaboratively, curiously and critically to help reconsider the necessary entanglements of architecure’s 'three fields.' Approaching Architecture is timely, relevant, and wonderfully global; relevant to researchers, teachers and students, and practitioners alike.''

    Ozayr Saloojee, PhD., Associate Professor, Carleton University School of Architecture + Urbanism, Associate Editor of Design, Journal of Architectural Education

    ''The work of the architect is complex. As a discipline, architecture addresses multiple problematics. Expanding the approach towards architecture is key to thoughtful architectural design. The book Approaching Architecture: Three Fields, One Discipline seeks to engage the discipline more broadly and generously. This book is an opportunity to explore the role of the architect through three instrumental approaches to the discipline – research, pedagogy and practice. The book invites the reader to not only understand how the architect participates in these fields, but to also realize that their interconnection is inherent to the complexity of the discipline and necessary for the architect's curiosity. In this work, Miguel Guitart portrays the contemporary architect as an extension of the renaissance model, something that becomes particularly relevant as our world becomes more and more fragmented. Guitart's book, ambitious in its intellectual, disciplinary, and geographic scope, is a must-read for every student, scholar, and professional.''

    Alberto Campo Baeza, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid


    'The architectural profession is increasingly siloed, with research, education and practice often seen as separate entities. But this collection of essays is proof that the most fruitful works lie at the intersection of all three disciplines. With a foreword by Nader Tehrani, the anthology draws insights from 18 practitioners across the globe, including Japan’s Kengo Kuma & Associates and South Africa’s Heinrich Wolff. Each advocates for a multidisciplinary approach that rethinks what it means to study and practise architecture. As assistant professor at Toronto Metropolitan University Julia Jamrozik succinctly puts it in her chapter, "The objective of a studio should perhaps focus less on the design of space than on the design of the process of design." '

    Aug 25, 2022. Three Books to Add to Your Reading List This Back to School Season. Azure Magazine. https://www.azuremagazine.com/article/architecture-education-books/

    ‘One of the major problems that architects have to face today is the growing disconnection between the theoretical, pedagogical, and professional sides of the discipline. The problem has only intensified with the recurring economical and social crises, as the drastic decrease of opportunities for professional work has brought on a proliferation and inflation of ever more introverted academic bubbles. Professor Miguel Guitart addresses the matter in a defense of the rich complexity of architecture through fifteen essays by architects who have managed to fruitfully combine three complementary facets – research, teaching, practice – of a single discipline.’ – Arquitectura Viva 250