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re.'the cost of good architecture'

edited May 2004 in architecture
how does one respond to such article. hold on, i know,
please mr. Johns, point out the architects in crappy cars. i don't see them. indeed, upon arriving at point B(slumming it in a magna maybe? surely not in a Datsun 180), you seem to have overlooked the luxury that is intrinsically part of your openning premise-OWNING A CAR(let us for purposes of brevity ignore the idea of a RESONSIBLE architect(ure) using public transport).
Maybe if a third of architects weren't sued because making a "waterproof leasable box" is a little beyond the scope of their abilities, then the luxury car industry could look forward to golden days again.
Now to the comparison between art and architecture-this deserves a
BA HA HA(totally loud in your face laugh)
why don't we compare, say, Oxygen and shoes, or maybe hair-dye and avocados. All equally as useful. maybe(not to get too histrionic) a re-reading of some select morsels of Adolf Loos' pretaining to the only architecture that is art being the tomb and the monument(let us ignore the monuments architects erect to themselves, i mean the traditional type, G). i digress.
maybe the fee scale is too low. Maybe if you have a practice, you should bill by the hour. now let's see, if you have a student working on adds. and alts., for a job, and they get paid something like $9/hr plus overheads(ch-ching of the register). or say you're a sole practitioner, and you set your rate at hmmm, a sales assistant's Sunday pay rate of approx.$16/hr.Well, now i can see the rate of domestic housing designed by architects increasing dramatically(and wouldn't we all like to see that, in this, the year of the built enviroment).
what sort of car does Daryl Jackson drive? is it comensurate to 8/260 of the annual turnover of the practise. Does this mean someone who handles 10 projects has a car worth 10/260? me thinks not, as they would probably feel the need(if they owned such a car) to start their own practise and name it after themself-or then again, maybe they are getting paid what they are worth and wouldn't feel the need to.Hey, hold on a second, maybe, just maybe, they would have sense of SELF-WORTH as a byproduct of their ability(or what ever other means) and wouldn't feel the need to compare cars!!!
i am unsure as to whether food for thought was provided in peter johns article or just a whole bunch of sour grapes served to a gaggle who believe their palates are best sated by camembert and crackers.


  • Anonymous
    edited January 1970
    maybe given the importance architecture has in defining the way we live, an architect deserves more than a Datsun 180B.
    oh, and i am lactose intolerant(and have little by way of perserverance of fools).
  • Anonymous
    edited January 1970
    3 cheers for the noble paper with the set-square. I'll flick you a coin to buy that bus ticket to where ever you are going.
  • Anonymous
    edited January 1970
    i think the word is 'pauper', and one must ask, where is the nobility in poverty? To put a finer point to it, where is the nobility when peer support is lacking? It is one thing to apply analysis in a process of self awareness, but entirely another to have a poorely executed hack. Architecture, as with almost every other endevour, puts forward the same three options to a client-TIME, QUALITY & COST, but allows the choice of only two. Has Mr. or Ms. PP(is this on your licence-oh that's right, you don't drive), put forward a method by which a client can have all three? If so, I fail to grasp it.
  • peter_j
    edited January 1970
    I will respond to your veiled and barbed comments in a while. I wrote that ed. about 3 years ago so have to refamiliarise.

    PS, FYI
    I ride a bike. I do not own a car.
  • peter_j
    edited January 1970
    Thanks for your post. It's hard to make much sense of your fractured critique but here goes...

    Would you like me to do a car survey? Register in this forum and you can set up a poll yourself. My observations were I think based on looking at an architecture firm's carpark, perhaps not statistically accurate.

    I take it that you aren't an architect, and that you don't think very much of them, or me. Where did you hear that 1/3 get sued? Maybe over the course of a career, but this is apparently the most litigious society on earth at the moment so no surprises there. I don't think it's because we're all incompetent.

    How can you laugh in my face and remain anonymous?

    I think that art and architecture have points of overlap. "Hair dye and avocados" do not, unless said dye is green. The procurement of the arts is worth comparing with the procurement of architecture. More on that in the future, after I finish a book I've been reading. You would laugh, PP 1-500-doo-doo. It's called, "WHY ARE ARTISTS POOR? - THE EXCEPTIONAL ECONOMY OF THE ARTS."

    I hope you don't believe everything Adolf Loos uttered. I would question the old ghost why only mute and uninhabitable architecture can go by the sacred name of art. Is art less commercial, more for the love of it, more intensely personal, than something as crassly useful and team-built as architecture. Where do the other design 'arts' fit with your real art? Is the plywood Eames chair art? If not why not? We could go on to discuss porcelain urinals next perhaps.

    You really don't appreciate architects much do you, yet curiously you'd like us to get more work if we charged less for it. Less being shop assistant wages.

    OK, but to do this I would need to deregister as an architect and register for bankruptcy. I wouldn't be able to perform my professional duties as I wouldn't have the time. A sales assistant works 8 billable hours and goes home. This is so different from running an architectural practice (or indeed any business) that I suspect your sentence about hairdyes may apply. For a start why don't you educate yourself about the difference between base rates and charge out rates.

    Don't know what your 8/260 rule is meant to prove. You've missed the point of that paragraph. The point was that big firms do small jobs as PR exercises and because they are professionally rewarding, because they aren't making money from them on normal fees. Just because I'm talking about money it doesn't mean that self worth / job satisfaction / professional credibilty all fly out the window.

    Oh here we go, the camembert-munching chardonnay-swigging black-clad tossers designing monuments to themselves. It all comes out in the last paragraph. And you think I , whom you have called by name when you are but a shadow, am a spoilt brat who doesn't know how go he's got it, for whom it's all about taking, taking, and taking. You are of course completely right.

    I have gone and read the article, which is here:
    It's three years old and not all that good I accept. And it has numerous typos, a bit like yours PP!

    The editorial brings together what was then a decade of experience in a heap of offices in two countries, from the big and famous to the small and not. Some offices put two to three times as much work into a job as another architect would have, often for the same fee. I wasn't saying that the latter group were scoundrels at all. I am saying that the architects who work overtime for nothing are giving mightily to their clients and the community. Unfortunately many like yourself have no awareness of this, preferring always to see architects as a bunch of overpaid snobs.

    My more contestable thought was that perhaps the local audience of potential clients was becoming accustomed to the high standards and refined detailing that fill the design mags and newspaper supplements, that the extra work is becoming the norm, and that this isn't sustainable unless you happen to practice in Europe and charge people to work for you, OR you charge more for it.
  • Anonymous
    edited January 1970
    i do(or is that doo-doo) work in architecture and like yourself have worked in large and small firms. Whilst never having worked in Europe i do have friends who have trained and worked there though(this is another conversation).
    now, to matters at hand, if the bar has been raised in the public's mind as to what to expect from architects as a byproduct of glossy publications, and these publications are generated from images produced by firms for P.R. exercises(or was it joy), then so be it! Can the profession not rise to this call? and if this is an unreasonable demand, then who is to blame?
    let us avoid blame(for the moment), and instead just reflect on why it is that more houses are not designed by architects. hmmm.
  • Anonymous
    edited January 1970
    most houses aren't designed by architects because most architects are useless ****.
    for the most part architecture is a profession for posers - if they had a contribution to make they would have no trouble advancing in the broader market place.

    its a blindly conceited idea that the built environment would necessarily be better if everything was designed by an architects.

    (Editor: nasty words deleted)
  • Anonymous
    edited January 1970
    It is hard to take the DO comments seriously. My experience is with builders, clients architects and sometimes artists on the same project and I find that everybody benefits the greatest is when there is clear communication between all involved ,and an understanding of what is required of each role. There is a culture blaming on all sides, however the more professional the practictioner the less it happens and total collaboration is more common. Re: the original piece, I believe that remuneration for a high level of design has improved and clients get value for dollar as we expect from most transactions . It is not a perfect world and any endeavour that someone is passionate about probably has more time spent on it than may be rewarded financially.
  • adeliadearchitecture
    edited January 1970
    If there ego's are semi-relient on the ionism of chards and camambert, why hasn't someone designed a bottle shaped scraping megolith. Crazy eds is trying to build a phone shaped building.
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