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From Kafkaesque labyrinths of columns and arches to the abstraction of Modernist towers: the representation of justice in a world ruled by its absence is an intractable task
Since time immemorial, and from continent to continent, saunas or bathhouses have played a community role, stripping their users of social distinctions and affording a rich seam for architects
Robbrecht en Daem | de Vylder Vinck Taillieu | Marie-José Van Hee | 51N4E | MSA | V+ | L’Escaut | OFFICE Kersten Geers David Van Severen | noAarchitecten | AgwA | Dom Hans van der Laan | Lucien Kroll | Typology: Law court
From the green quadrangles of medieval almshouses to towering banlieues, the history of mass housing represents architecture at its most high-minded – which makes its failures all the more painful
With the 1940s came a compulsion to move headquarters from the inner-city sprawl to more tranquil environs out of town. Is the resurgent migration a retreat to a natural idyll or a calculated isolation?
Religious belief systems remain powerful and distinct but, alongside the differences, comes a call for greater tolerance and cohesion. Can the worship of different gods take place under one roof?
The fire station is a unique blend of domesticity and workplace, with the engines brought as close as possible to the living quarters in search of the world’s briefest commute (preferably via pole)
The university is one of the oldest surviving institutions in the western world. It has colonised the globe, its architecture reflecting the prevailing ideology – of which it is the reproductive machinery
A sealed volume, the tomb has no interior – or if it does, you really don’t want to go there. The exterior, by contrast, is a screen onto which we project our hopes and fears about the other side of life
Sites of ablution, illicit heavy petting, athleticism, surveillance, leisure, racism and death: pools bring people together stripped of status symbols, but in ways profoundly marked by wider social conditions
Since its birth in the Renaissance, opera has been claimed as a reincarnation of community-forming Greek drama, while being used to represent the power of the state − whether feudal, dictatorial or democratic
Museums arrange the world according to the changing way we see it: from Renaissance memory theatres and Baroque cabinets of curiosity, via Enlightenment typologies, to Modernist teleologies and the current vogue for environmental contextualism
Ancient civilisation advocated letting the wider world’s healing power flow through the body and mind, but the industrialisation of healthcare isolated patients from these larger contexts. From city centres to sylvan settings, today’s hospitals must reintegrate the public realm into the healing process