Winnipeg Skating Shelters
Some say good design is so good that you don’t even notice it. However to get there maybe one should start with design that is honest, thoughtful and has a low environmental impact. Then again, this approach is befitting to this particular context but might not be if relocated elsewhere. The discourse of to contextualise or not (as part of design approach to increase mobility and international acceptance and usability) has become mundane. If each project is treated as a unique case and being looked at from scratch, then such discourse would not have existed as the decision would be based on the parameters of the site and it’s immediate (perhaps future) environment. Personally, the need for contextualisation is very important. Simply because as I visit other countries as an end user to experience a new place, I end up experiencing similar sensations as I would have got (perhaps on a greater scale) at some shopping mall or commercial building back home.
I sincerely feel that clients and developers should hire starchitects as advisors while the design decisions of new buildings in Singapore, or any other country, should lie in a locally gathered group of professionals. The new buildings that’s springing up on the island are like an alien invasion of gigantic proportions. Perhaps the eagerness to please international visitors outweighed the need to present our local flavour, and any efforts done to address that only ends up with cheesy decorative elements or some local food fair in which char kway teow is cooked in air conditioned hotel atrium. It could be the case where by visitor get to hop on shuttle buses to kopitiams where real char kway teow is stir fried. It cannot get more authentic than that :)