As an architect and designer, I've had the privilege of shaping various environments, from luxurious apartments in Manhattan to cosy villines in Denmark, and challenging museum architecture in Germany. Moreover, I hold a teaching position at the Department of Architecture in Dortmund and am often asked by students what makes "good" or "bad" architecture. With this post, I aim to provide a more nuanced definition of "good" architecture.
Getting inspired by magazines might seem like a good idea at first, but it often results in a design concept that's incoherent and impersonal. The solution? Develop your own concept that suits you. Don't just copy example projects. This way, you'll avoid aesthetic chaos.
For me, a good project involves an interior space that, when you enter it, feels subjectively "right". This involves three key factors:
Good architecture is more than just "beautiful". It's the sum of use, atmosphere, and material concept. A good project makes sense, it logically fits together. Instead of merely resorting to subjective statements like "I think it's beautiful", we can now argue: "The architecture is good because the use, room atmosphere, and material concept logically match and make the project coherent."
This approach allows us to talk about good and bad architecture without getting stuck in subjective judgements. With the ability to say, "I think it's bad because the material doesn't match the use concept", we have the chance to genuinely improve architecture.
As architects and designers, it's our duty to create spaces that are both functional and aesthetic, and that make us feel at home, regardless of whether it's a luxurious apartment, a cosy house, or a workspace. Interior design is not just about style but also about substance and functionality. And that's the true luxury in interior design.