There are many reasons why I’m not a great architect. Over the years I’ve come across them all. At its core though, I think it’s because I am more interested in people than buildings. I am not disinterested in buildings, but they are so much more engaging when they visibly respond to human needs and desires. A great architect once said that a building should be a ‘machine for living in’. Many take this to illustrate Le Corbusier’s love of the industrial and machine age aesthetic. I take a different view – that the building should be servile, a tool to facilitate our lifestyle. Whatever form that may take.
So before we get to architecture, we need to get a life. One thing this very unnerving experience is doing is forcing us to pause, take stock and relearn about ourselves. I apologise in advance to all those of you who are working on the frontline or battling with the horrific consequences of this disease, for your experience is very different. But for most of us, the main impact of this virus is the lockdown, and the necessity to stay at home.
We are becalmed, and people are noticing the benefits that come with it. Time to spend with family, to listen to each other with no objective in mind. To tend to the garden or revive that musical instrument. Time to remember some of the promises we have made to ourselves over the years.
My sincere suggestion is that we take this time to reboot. To remind ourselves what we love to do, what we aspire to, what makes us happy. About our hobbies and creative outlets. How we want to host our family and friends, and make space for ourselves. Only then can we design homes that facilitate, spaces that serve our aspirations.
Jason Harris is Principal Architect & founding owner of T-Space