What is Architecture? Design, an idea, a dream. But, above all, communication. The desire to ‘build’ goes beyond the need to physically shape buildings, roads and squares. What architects build around themselves is the projection of an inner landscape: self-praise? Maybe. Self-referentiality? Perhaps.
Now, more than ever, works are in the limelight thanks to this new, wonderful visibility-generating machine, i.e. social networks. This is confirmed by figures: today the Sworld of design and structures is a wonderful virtual showcase for his majesty, the architect. Like an enlightened emperor, he manages his image and creates debates, rumours, and consensus. He becomes a celebrity. Therefore definitely an enlightened emperor… but with the right lighting!
Once the drafting machine, plastic models and, finally, bricks were the ones giving shape and substance to the dream of every architect. Then the digital revolution came and everything changed: the world of Architecture opened up to it with a curious approach, the feeling at the basis of every evolution.
Every architect has a dream: learning about as many aspects as he can about the world around him. This dream has now turned into reality thanks to social networks. “The magical box”: internet and in general social networks are truly a magical box that allows you to immediately reach everything, be present and visible basically anywhere.
The golden rule is being there: or rather, on social networks you need to be there and be active: a detailed profile, original content and a highly evocative power are a must. The added value of feelings is an aspect not to be underestimated: talking about works, projects and ideas through images awakens the emotional sphere of those who look and create a bond meant to last over time. The time when architects and design engineers considered internet as a parallel universe are bygone: the web brings people together, moves around ideas and renews them. This is where every project turns from real to virtual, visible to everyone and a source of inspiration.
In general, and in the specific case for an architect, finding new ways of showing items and oneself has never been easier. Being on social networks means being sociable, that is up-to-date, modern, on the market. And the more you are present, the more you are famous. The more you are famous, the more you are important. A nice game, for the eternal young man in the heart of every architect. The heart of a child, ready to be amazed by the wonders of technology. And what is more wonderful than a technology that, as well as being easy, is also useful and fun? With architecture, social networks found a winning match, broke out on the web and the hashtag #architecture is one of the most clicked ones online. A few figures? 30 million. This is how many times it appears on Instagram. There are more than 70 million photos uploaded every day. And these are all figures meant to grow.
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The phenomenon is not just related to Instagram and Pinterest, platforms designed to share images: the social media mania has literally invaded the world of Architecture, changing it. For the better. Along with the two social networks already mentioned above, there are also Facebook and Flickr, plus platforms with a vocation closer to design like Houzz and Archilovers.
Nowadays there is a large number of firms using a social network profile to share photos, inspirations and ideas: a simple and low-cost mechanism that generates interest, debates and communication. Marc Kushner, a young and bright architect in New York said: “In future, social networks will revolutionise the way of building”. That future is now.