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Town building part 1: A guide on modern architectural styles
#1
I've always had a love for beautiful themed town, and I feel that this server requires a whole lot more of these. As a self-proclaimed architecture and history enthusiast, I want to share what I know about architectures and town building, so that other players can improve their current or future towns. This will be a series of posts, starting with part 1 today on modern (1900 onward) architecture.

So this post is a bit of a rant, but mainly an introduction to many folks who want a proper themed town, but don't know where to start.

One thing I've observed so, so commonly on this server, or any other building servers, is a general lack of knowledge about styles in many amateur players. Many towns are merely messy conglomerates of different buildings plopping down at random places. Worse still, some houses are just giant square boxes with a roof. The end product is often ugly, disorganized, and doesn't carry any resemblance to a real life town; and it doesn't make your town stand out from the other hundreds of similarly messy towns.

Now to the topic at hand: Modern architecture. "I want a modern style building" is an extremely vague sentence, and I usually take it that you would let me build whatever the hell I want. First thing to note: there is absolutely no unifying 'modern' style. In fact, there are LOTS of different styles, each distinctly unique from each other, that you might have seen several times but simply group them all together as 'modern'. In fact, some certain styles would complement each other in a town, but some really can't go together. So here's a breakdown of current modern styles:


Modernism
Emerged out of the 20th century's need for rising metropolises, often built to be multipurpose and functional, using the new advanced building materials: steel beams, steel core concrete, glass panes, plastic. Nowadays often associated with the word 'corporate', they are minimalist, and often considered soulless. They're a staple of major emerging cities. Now, modernism pretty much covers all the styles I'm going to introduce, but I'm listing here the most common styles that are used frequently. The other special styles and schools will have their own sections.

-International style: What you see most nowadays in major cities. Those blueish giant glass, steel and concrete boxes, with no distinct feature outside, are international architecture. They're built for practicality not decoration, most commonly seen with 10-20 floors.
Prime example: Equitable Building, Atlanta
[Image: 800px-EquitableAtlanta.jpg]

In small buildings however, International Style is a bit different. Different colors of concrete and glass are used together, arranging in unorthodox shapes, though still retains the flat surfaces.
In Hometown, when people attempt to build a modern house, this is often the result.
Prime example: Lovell House, Los Angeles
[Image: Lovell_House%2C_Los_Angeles%2C_California.JPG]

-High-tech (Structural Expressionism): A building, similar to International Style, but with more variation in shapes and external decor, and most importantly, showcasing the tech used in building with its facade. Marked by geometric shapes, high-tech material, and often prefab building components. This is what you see most often in cyberpunk movies and games.
Prime example: HSBC headquarter, Hong Kong
[Image: IMG012699_full4x3.jpg]

-Neo-futurism: The next evolution after High-tech, now with more variation in shapes and material, yet retains the simplicity of the previous modernist styles. No longer restricted to a mainly rectangular box shape, neo-futuristic buildings can take many different looks
Prime example: Landmark 81, Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnamese representing bois)
[Image: 240px-LM81_NhonHuynh_5-8-2018.jpg]


Bauhaus school
One of my favorite architectural class. The Bauhaus ideology essentially unifies all arts under one. "Form follows function", the shapes of things are meant for functioning, not merely aesthetics; every curves, lines, extrusion has a function. Simplicity is important, and the internal components (pipes, beams) that people often call 'ugly' are left exposed, and treated as an integral part of the structure.

-Bauhaus architectural style: something that covers all the above principles. Often marked by a lack of colors, linings, decoration, and an abundance of geometric shapes.
Prime example: Bauhaus campus, Dessau, Germany
[Image: 94c375f024b59425fa3afcb7f0ad298b.jpg]

-New Objectivity: Think a mix of Bauhaus and Structural Expressionism. With more advanced technology, Bauhaus designers can now experiment with new shapes, and also showcase their innovation on the facade. It's the staple of German cities after WW1.
Prime examples: Rudolf Mosse Publishing House, Berlin
[Image: Mosseverlagshausberlin.jpg]

-Constructivism: Think Soviet Union buildings, and you get the general idea of Constructivism. It's not a distinct architectural style, but more like a philosophy: a mix of Bauhaus principles and Socialist ideology. In simple terms, all buildings are 'equal': equal in complexity, luxuriousness, rooms etc. Constructivism only lived for a short while, and died quickly, but it was considered to be the inspiration for Brutalism.
If you ever want a Soviet town recreation, or a general Bauhaus town, stick to the Constructivism philosophy.
Prime example: Dom Narkomfin, Moscow
[Image: narkomfin-22-photos-03-800x512.jpg]

-Brutalism: Though not often classed under Bauhaus, I decided to put this here since it embraces the same principles. The most distinct feature of Brutalism is exposed building material: unpainted concrete, uncovered steel beams, bare bricks. As with Bauhaus styles, Brutalism is built with "form follows function" in mind; however brutalist buildings can have a little more artistic expressions with its features.
Prime example: Alexandra Road Estate, London
[Image: ro1.jpg]


This post ends here because there's a limit for 10 pictures per post. Keep reading the second part below

Expressionism
Pretty much the opposite of Bauhaus, when architects got bored of the monotony of modernist buildings, Expressionism was born. Marked with fancy ornaments and excessive features, expressionist buildings are works of fine arts, embodying luxury, fine living, prosperity. An expressionist building often conveys an emotion, through the use of distorted shapes.

In Minecraft, if you want a fancy modern town, this will be your best option, though it takes the most effort in designing and actually building.

Prime example: Sydney Opera House
[Image: 320px-SydneyOperaHouse.jpg]

-Art Deco (Style Moderne): The core and blood of Expressionism. Often featuring fancy engraved facade and symmetrical sections. Built out of expensive material, often granite or marble, though more 21st century buildings have switched to concrete.
Prime example: Chrysler Building, New York
[Image: chysler-building.jpg?quality=90&strip=al...410&crop=1]

-Late Art Deco: In the 1920s-1930s, some architects criticized Art Deco, saying that it's a style meant only for the upper class, and want to bring Art Deco to the masses; and so Late Art Deco was born. It's an excellent attempt at marrying Expressionism and Bauhaus, the two apparently opposite schools of design. Concrete building with layout meant for practicality, yet retaining the fancy artworks. This style existed for only a short while, as it later evolved into International Style.
Prime example: Palais de Challiot, Paris
[Image: image.jpg]

-Streamline Moderne: A pretty esoteric subset of Art Deco, featuring rounded corners and even surfaces. Often built to resemble an aerodynamic ship.
Prime example: BBC Broadcasting House, London
[Image: Broadcasting_House_by_Stephen_Craven.jpg]

-Neo Art Deco: A 21st century modern revival of Art Deco, now with advanced technology. Big skyscrapers with intricate details only made possible with modern machines.
Prime example: Parkview Square, Singapore
[Image: parkview-square-office-for-rent-singapore-39.jpg]

Miscellaneous 
These styles don't fit in any of the category above, but are still interesting styles in use.

-Neo-Gothic: A movement to revive the medieval Gothic style (post on medieval styles coming soon!) with modern building technology. Basically like Gothic, but now with concrete, mortar and bricks.
Prime example: Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, Mumbai
[Image: Victoria_Terminus%2C_Mumbai.jpg]

-Postmodernism: Postmodernism is a new art movement, however it has created its own architectural style. It's like Expressionism, but marked by abstraction of concepts it wants to show. Sometimes strange and surreal imagery is used, to essentially shove the concept in your face. 
Prime example: Wexner Center for the Arts, Ohio State University
[Image: OSU_Wexner_Center.JPG]

-Organic (Eco): More of a design philosophy, it represents the harmony of civilization and nature. Often built with eco-friendly material, lots of greenery, and a respect for natural terrain
Prime example: Fallingwater, rural Pennsylvania
[Image: Fallingwater_-_DSC05639.JPG]

-Googie: Think Fallout 4 and you get the idea. Googie is inspired by the Space Age, Atomic Age, cars culture and jet planes. Often featuring fins, starbursts, upward curving slopes, and sci-fi like imagery.
Prime example: Theme Building, LAX airport
[Image: googie-la-05.jpg]



And that's it for today post on modern architecture. If you have any other modern style that I missed out, feel free to add on and discuss here. I'll come back later with part 2 to introduce European Medieval styles.
I love sand and gunpowder
 
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