Mies Van Der Rohe said that “architecture starts when you carefully put two bricks together.” However, I see architecture as something significantly larger. Architecture is more than basic bricks.

Historically, architecture has repeatedly taken inspiration from non-architecture. Many Frank Gehry designs showcase an architecture inspired by the amphibian world. The concept of a tree is reinterpreted over and over in anything from Gothic columns and vaults to architectural works literally built in and among living trees. Architecture finds its inspiration in an abundance of different places.

When an inspiration manifests itself in a finished building, the inspiration itself, in a way, becomes architecture. This begs the question, what IS architecture? Is there really such a thing as ‘non-architecture’?

When non-architecture is allowed to be perceived as architecture, a whole new world of possibilities may be considered. Any given object can and should be thought of not only in terms of its intended purpose, but also in terms of potential purpose. Is an amphibian simply a slimy creature, or is it architecture? Is a tree an organism of roots, branches, and leaves, or is it architecture? Can a blender be architecture?

The posted image was taken midway through a project in which I chose to parallel the deconstruction and re-purposing of a blender with the deconstruction and re-purposing of a student architecture project. Over the course of this project, I took a perfectly complete architecture design and systematically broke the design into the constituent material elements that made up the building. I later reorganized the materials into an entirely new design. Meanwhile, I disassembled an old, thrift store blender and reused the blender components in the physical model of the previously mentioned redesigned building. As a result of paralleling the processes of architectural design with the taking apart of household appliances, I produced a project that served as a functional building while visually evoking the essence of a blender. The torso of this tower featured a large rotating element (similar to the blender) that served to generate wind energy. Blender to building.

Architecture does exist within the brick. But it also exists around the brick, outside of the brick, and beyond the brick. Architecture exists before we put two bricks together or even without putting bricks together at all. Architecture exists where architecture is found.