The cooperation of well-known architects, architecture students and local communities in the process of architectural creation in different cultural environments. Examples from Asia
At the XXIV World Congress of Architecture (UIA), held in Tokyo in 2011 after the historically devastating events in Japan in March 2011, professionals and students working in architectural and urban fields consequently made a pledge to “promote responsibility within our profession, support architects and architecture, and enhance the regional quality of life for all people, together with governments and others, by closing the gaps in social justice, whilst working towards sustainability”. This commitment is expressed in the idea of the cooperation of well-known architects, architecture students and local communities in the creation of architecture in selected examples of completed buildings in South-East and South Asia, particular in Cambodia and Sri Lanka. The architects referred to the traditional local materials and construction techniques that had been forgotten or superseded by global ones, and rediscovered centuries-old solutions, which in turn allowed the appropriate inclusion of newly designed buildings into the cultural context. Discussions with the local communities and studies on the needs of future users were the basic guidelines for architectural solutions in the design process. This approach to design involves architects for the local communities living with limited resources in the poorest regions of the world, but also involves the local communities for the contemporary architecture respecting multicultural environments and “leading the next generation of socially responsible architects and designers”. The examples of the buildings completed in South-East and South Asia might provide examples of “Art of the Orient” in the field of contemporary architecture, blending into the humanitarian architecture and referring to the UIA 2011 Tokyo Declaration as well.
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