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Your views: Readers respond to January's AR

The Editor of Architectura Viva and others comment on AR’s new campaign and other issues

I am glad you are launching a big rethink of architecture and the profession; however, I do not think it is fair to write that ‘no other architectural publication is attempting anything similar’. Actually, in June 2010 we organised an international congress under the motto ‘More for Less’, featuring architects from five continents, and we released a book with interviews in depth of them all. In any case, congratulations for the magazine, which is one of the very few we pay attention to.

Luis Fernández-Galiano, Editor, Architectura Viva, Madrid

Peter Buchanan’s assertion that the best design work today is coming not from ‘starchitects’ but rather from ‘highly professional mainstream practices’ strikes me as one of the most original insights of the article.

Patrick Winters, from AR website

fantastic to start the new year with such a significant article. Without cultural evolution we are stuck in the pastiche world of matching existing Tweedledum and Tweedledee pseudo vernacular, funky facades and solar gadgetry blowing hot air. The public sector, which commissions 40 per cent of the work and gives consent to the rest, needs to be empowered and able to think more boldly about our cities and towns.

We are more worried about the look of things rather than human welfare. britain has some of the world’s leading expertise and it is about time there was a cultural shift in our planning departments to use this talent so that we can evolve out of our heritage not into it.

Yasmin Shariff, from AR website

A wonderful piece that hits the nail on the head. It really is all about people and places and less about statements and ego. I sincerely look forward to the death of the ‘starchitect’.

Darren Price, from AR website

Glad to read something reasonable about the future of architecture. for us lesser mortals, architecture is relatively rarely about ‘making context’, and much more about interpreting and enriching context. This is increasingly difficult, with tight budgets and constraints which rightly put energy efficiency at the forefront of the debate.

One issue needs highlighting though: there is not enough done about whole cost building rather than capital cost thinking. Maybe governments need to legislate more. In social housing, increased energy efficiency only interests the organisations when renters have less financial pressure on them from heating costs and so are more likely to pay on time. Construction financing that took into account the lifecycle cost reduction through improved performance seems a great way to relaunch the economy and start to deal with global warming.

Craig Comerford, from AR website

At last! a brilliant piece of independent writing, just what we want from our journals! I hope this heralds an exciting year for a new trail-blazing ar, as independent as is possible, and speaking for humanity, especially the rising tide of protest from the younger generations, and for the health of the planet.

Justin Bere, from AR website

Archi-tetes illustration of Imre Makovecz

Archi-tetes illustration of Imre Makovecz

I wonder if any of your readers noticed the remarkable resemblance between the drawing on page 95 of your last issue and my 1999 archi-tête (above). are they by any chance related?

Louis Hellman, London

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