Special Issue "Contemporary Architecture from the 20th Century to the Present"

A special issue of Arts (ISSN 2076-0752). This special issue belongs to the section "Visual Arts".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 July 2017)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Marco Sosa

Assistant Professor, College of Arts and Creative Enterprises, Zayed University, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Website | E-Mail
Interests: How can architects instigate processes for generating architectural typologies as tools to empower and promote self sufficiency. Exhibition design. Photography as a tool for archiving modern architecture heritage; co-funding of a research unit (with architect Lina Ahmad), dedicated to prompting creative solutions and delivering products and spatial proposals within United Arab Emirates community. Keywords: interior design; photography; design by making

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The term ‘contemporary architecture’ tends to be used to describe the architecture of today and the urban environment of now; the present. Generally, it conjures images of beautifully-designed architecture, clean, glossy, and unattached to a movement or style, but is also global and non-regional. Yet, what is the architecture of now? What defines a particular contemporary movement to earn it the distinction to be referred as “contemporary”?

The 15th Venice Architectural Biennale 2016 is titled “Reporting from the Front”, and curated by architect Alejandro Aravena. The title and theme conjure visions of an investigation of a type architecture, gravitating towards the ethical, the humanitarian, and the sustainable. Is this another, often unreported, side of contemporary architecture acting a collective activist movement for the build environment? Architects and designers are looking at the state of the world and responding accordingly. Their voices, expressed in their design intentions are echoes of a quiet movement, which is socially, culturally, and environmentally responsible. An architecture, which is of the people, for the people.

Authors are invited to contribute, to challenge the definition of contemporary architecture and to suggest new perceptions and visions. Themes of papers, which will be considered, are:

  • On the historical development of socially responsible architecture theories.
  • Studies showcasing pedagogical methods in current architecture/design education.
  • Analysis or case studies of methods of looking and researching the current built environment and their responses, from artists, architects, urban planers, NGOs, Activists, Animators, graphic designers, musicians, photographers, and historians.
  • Case studies illustrating research carried out in specific conditions/sites, and their architectural/design proposals; built or un-built.

Marco Sosa, Architect
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Arts is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) is waived for well-prepared manuscripts submitted to this issue. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Prescriptive Methodology as a Generative Tool: A Case Study Conducted at Introductory Interior Design Studio Level in the United Arab Emirates
Arts 2017, 6(4), 17; doi:10.3390/arts6040017
Received: 31 March 2017 / Revised: 28 August 2017 / Accepted: 1 September 2017 / Published: 28 September 2017
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Abstract
In the U.A.E. (United Arab Emirates), interior design education is often misunderstood as interior decoration, wherein the former is a more comprehensive design approach to spaces formed by structural boundaries and curation of human interaction. The conducted case study addressed a small number
[...] Read more.
In the U.A.E. (United Arab Emirates), interior design education is often misunderstood as interior decoration, wherein the former is a more comprehensive design approach to spaces formed by structural boundaries and curation of human interaction. The conducted case study addressed a small number of students enrolled in Interior Design Studio I at Zayed University, Abu Dhabi campus. In addition to traditional teaching methods compromised of individual desk critique sessions, group pin-ups and presentations, three innovative methods were implemented as a means of guiding students through the process: direct sequential instruction executed within an assigned time frame, reflection on the surfaced result and use of flat photography or panoramas as means of space communication. Throughout the three implemented stages of the project, and through utilizing the above-described generative methodology, students achieved complex representation and revealed higher spatial order related to human occupation and space inhabitation. This methodology allowed students to channel their work through complex sets of interconnected information and derived an outcome from an accumulative multi-layered resolution. The article presents the process and analyses the achieved outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Architecture from the 20th Century to the Present)
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Open AccessArticle Pop-Up, Liquid Architecture for a Liquid World
Arts 2017, 6(3), 14; doi:10.3390/arts6030014
Received: 29 March 2017 / Revised: 18 June 2017 / Accepted: 29 August 2017 / Published: 15 September 2017
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Abstract
The present paper will translate the term liquid modernity into architecture: What is liquid architecture? In the contemporary world, particularly in big cities, we are observing the spread of a wide range of events that generates sudden demands for transitory and short-term lodgings.
[...] Read more.
The present paper will translate the term liquid modernity into architecture: What is liquid architecture? In the contemporary world, particularly in big cities, we are observing the spread of a wide range of events that generates sudden demands for transitory and short-term lodgings. International fairs and expos, cultural festivals and sport meets all share the factor of having a strong impact on their urban context with temporary and unstable buildings (forms). These buildings are not just designed by architects but also by artists, graphic designers, musicians, photographers, and even cooks. Therefore, can we call them buildings? How is this liquid architecture? Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Architecture from the 20th Century to the Present)
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Open AccessArticle Exploring Natural Stone and Building a National Identity: The Geological Exploration of Natural Stone Deposits in the Nordic Countries and the Development of a National-Romantic Architecture
Arts 2017, 6(2), 6; doi:10.3390/arts6020006
Received: 22 February 2017 / Revised: 23 April 2017 / Accepted: 2 May 2017 / Published: 12 May 2017
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Abstract
In the second half of the 19th century, new methods for quarrying and processing natural stone were developed. In the Nordic countries Sweden, Norway, and Finland, this technological progress went hand in hand with a systematic geological mapping and large-scale exploitation of natural
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In the second half of the 19th century, new methods for quarrying and processing natural stone were developed. In the Nordic countries Sweden, Norway, and Finland, this technological progress went hand in hand with a systematic geological mapping and large-scale exploitation of natural stone deposits. As a result, new constructions were developed, changing the building practice in these countries. With the end of historicism, a new architecture arose that, particularly in Norway and Finland, acquired a national-romantic character. This paper examines the interaction between geological exploration, commercial development, technical inventions, and the development of national-romantic architecture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Architecture from the 20th Century to the Present)
Open AccessArticle Function and Form: Shifts in Modernist Architects’ Design Thinking
Arts 2017, 6(1), 1; doi:10.3390/arts6010001
Received: 22 August 2016 / Revised: 20 October 2016 / Accepted: 3 November 2016 / Published: 9 January 2017
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Abstract
Since the so-called “type-debate” at the 1914 Werkbund Exhibition in Cologne—on individual versus standardized types—the discussion about turning Function into Form has been an important topic in Architectural Theory. The aim of this article is to trace the historic shifts in the relationship
[...] Read more.
Since the so-called “type-debate” at the 1914 Werkbund Exhibition in Cologne—on individual versus standardized types—the discussion about turning Function into Form has been an important topic in Architectural Theory. The aim of this article is to trace the historic shifts in the relationship between Function and Form: First, how Functional Thinking was turned into an Art Form; this orginates in the Werkbund concept of artistic refinement of industrial production. Second, how Functional Analysis was applied to design and production processes, focused on certain aspects, such as economic management or floor plan design. Third, how Architectural Function was used as a social or political argument; this is of particular interest during the interwar years. A comparison of theses different aspects of the relationship between Function and Form reveals that it has undergone fundamental shifts—from Art to Science and Politics—that are tied to historic developments. It is interesting to note that this happens in a short period of time in the first half of the 20th Century. Looking at these historic shifts not only sheds new light on the creative process in Modern Architecture, this may also serve as a stepstone towards a new rethinking of Function and Form. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Architecture from the 20th Century to the Present)
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