Pritzker 2011: RRReactions from a Parametricist

The first fact: frankly, I don't give a flying f*** (maybe a bit), but since my quiet architectural endeavors has been compromised and halted by questions from all sides lingering on the recent announcement of this year's Pritzker Prize recipient, yours truly had to take a breather, give up some of my time and actually decide on where to position myself on the matter.
Like the Nobel, the Pritzker brings out all things awefully interesting in our profession: the Neigh-sayers, the Enthusiastic Bugs (eager beavers) and the rest. For all that wasn't really informed (aka. 99% of the world who does not really give a hoot), the Pritzker Architecture Prize  "is awarded annually by the Hyatt Foundation to honor "a living architect whose built work demonstrates a combination of those qualities of talent, vision and commitment, which has produced consistent and significant contributions to humanity and the built environment through the art of architecture".
There actually was an information leak just before the actual winner for this year was announced- well , anyways, it was given to the respectable Eduardo Souto de Moura, a Portugese Architect. I further read that this decision has come somewhat of a surprise to the architectural industry (wow)  for number of reasons: a. the recipient was barely known outside Portugal, where his practice and works are concentrated, b. that his architecture is really a reflection of tranquility and emotions, this lead to c. it never reflected any innovation and  hint of where the architectural progress is heading towards.

Architect cover letter template anyone?

Architect cover letter template anyone?

With overwhelmingly large number of unemployed architects here in the U.S. seeking positions that pay far  less than their qualifications, some of the industry heads have become primadonnas...

Some, after months of strides, have lost hope, felt defeated, feeling  that it will be pointless writing pretentious and politically -correct cover letters anymore.  At this point, I say the best thing  one could do is be honest, write another, but this time try to give those schmucks a piece of you (whatever is left of it  anyway)

I have read this on some architectural blog site. This rant template, is too hilarious to ignore...

"Dear Hiring Manager,

Clearly the subject line of this email indicates that I am one of hundreds of applicants interested in the low-paying position you currently are hiring for. I know you know this because this is probably the only part of my application package you can read on your iPhone. So before we move much further in this process, I am going to demand that you have the decency to review my resume and work samples on a screen that is at least larger than your venti latte and preferably something as large as your misinformed ego. 

See, the thing is, I spent hours laboring over this application package, ensuring the graphic design was attractive but not flashy, the typography selections were unique but not obnoxious and the balance between visual content and written content was both visually appealing and provided a sufficient amount of information. It was designed to be read - explored - savored - and above all tell a convincing and compelling narrative about my experience and viewpoint as an architect. Condensing this down to a 2" screen has now made all of that effort look like a digital Monet painting, rendering the subtle use of varying weights of line and type totally illegible. 

Let me ask you this Hiring Manager: Would you watch porn on your iPhone? Do you think that 2" screen would really allow you to enjoy every detail, every carefully chosen "money shot", every exorbitant facial contortion, every bead of delicious sweat to the full and utmost potential? It might get the job done but it's really not going to provide the whole lusty experience the way a 30" wide monitor (or projection!) could. 

So Hiring Manager, are you looking to just get the job done? Well then, proceed with your iPhone and hire that candidate whose 14pt Arial nightmare that is legible on your iPhone screen, but don't come complaining to me in a month when Mr. New Hire just follows the same routine, flopping around like a fish out of water, and never spices things up around the office. If however, you are interested in a candidate that knows that in some instances, size really does matter, give me a call. First minute is free, $2.99 per minute after.


CONTOURS: What Should Architecture Occupy?

Of course, we know why architects are quiet on these fundamental issues of wealth and inequality. On the one hand they are just too busy trying to run their businesses and chase after ever fewer projects for less and less money. The other reason is that architects depend on the wealthiest segments of society for their livelihoods. Thus it seems to provide an obvious reason not to support a movement that stands for social and economic justice and an end to rules that favor corporations, banks and wealthy individuals over “everyone else.” Again, if you aren’t sure what the ruckus is all about, you can do some investigating on your own—start by reading outside the architectural press. via CONTOURS: What Should Architecture Occupy? Part Two | Features | Archinect.