On Architecture




Architects love to talk about design, space, and buildings. Within the field, they have a language all their own; the way architects communicate is unique.

This exhibition highlights quoted criticisms, opinions, or ideas about the built world around us by architects from around the globe who are connected to the Washington, DC region through projects or practice. Words are grouped by theme.

Reading their words, we discover how architects observe, process, and examine the objects and voids within our communities. We complement their quotes with biographical information and images of notable projects.

But architects aren’t the only voices speaking about architecture. We include some amusing, thought-provoking, or otherwise romantic words by figures from other walks of life—artists, politicians, writers—who offer their own thoughts on architecture.

Curatorial Note 

Quotathon
Help us increase the visibility and discoverability of minority architects online.

Words by Architects


Explore quoted criticisms, opinions, or ideas about the built world around us by architects from around the globe who are connected to the Washington, DC region through projects or practice.

Featured Architects Billie Tsien, AIA; Bjarke Ingels, Hon. FAIA; Chloethiel Woodard Smith, FAIA; Daniel H. Burnham; Sir David Adjaye OBE; Douglas J. Cardinal, O.C., Ph.D.; Sir Edwin Lutyens OM; Eero Saarinen; Elizabeth Diller; Enrique Norten, Hon. FAIA; Frank O. Gehry, CC, FAIA; Frank Lloyd Wright; Henry Hobson Richardson; Jeanne Gang, FAIA; Kathryn Tyler Prigmore, FAIA; Kimberly Dowdell, AIA, NOMA; Ludwig Mies van der Rohe; Marion Weiss, FAIA; Maya Lin; Michael A. Manfredi, FAIA; Moshe Safdie, FAIA, FRAIC, OAA, SIA; Sir Norman Foster Dip.Arch & Cert. TP, M.Arch; Philip G. Freelon, FAIA; Philip Johnson; Richard J. Neutra; Robert A.M. Stern, FAIA; Yiselle Santos Rivera, AIA, NOMA, LSSYB, LEED AP, WELL AP

Aspirations
Practice
Equity & Diversity
Approach
Collaboration
Space
Project Types
Tools

Words by Figures


Explore amusing, thought-provoking, or otherwise romantic words by figures from other walks of life—artists, politicians, writers—who offer their own thoughts on architecture.

Featured Figures Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez; Annie Leibovitz; Doris Lessing; Frank Stella; Gilbert K. Chesterton; Henry David Thoreau; Sir Ian McKellen; Itzhak Perlman; James Turrell; Joan Rivers; Johann Wolfgang von Goethe; John Osborne; Maya Angelou; Salvador Dalí; Tim Gunn; Sir Winston Churchill

Home
Imagination
Cause and Effect
Consciousness
Equity
Impression
Minimalism
Humor

Acknowledgements

On Architecture is organized by AIA|DC and exclusively online.
Curated and written by Scott Clowney, Assoc. AIA
Research assistance by David Constine

Special Thanks
Diller Scofidio + Renfro; Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial Commission; LEO A DALY; Library of Congress; Mecanoo Architecten | OTJ Architects; National Building Museum; National Portrait Gallery, London; National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; National Trust for Historic Preservation; WDG Architecture; WEISS/MANFREDI Architecture/Landscape/Urbanism

Additional Thanks
Alan Karchmer; Elizabeth Diller; Kathryn Tyler Prigmore, FAIA; Kimberly Dowdell, AIA, NOMA; Marion Weiss, FAIA; Michael A. Manfredi, FAIA; Michael Moran; Yiselle Santos Rivera, AIA, NOMA, LSSYB, LEED AP, WELL AP

Support
Exhibitions are supported, in part, by our Sustaining Firm Affiliate Members

Downloads
Exhibition Overview (.pdf)
Full Content (.pdf)
© AIA Washington, DC 2020