The Canon of Architect: Essays on Architecture by 11 Architects

  • A5 변형 176pp 2005.12.1 17,000KRW ISBN 978-89-301-0171-4

Of all arts, architecture has the longest traditions in the history of mankind. Our life and architecture were inseparably related, considering that architecture would not disappear as long as our life exists. What then is architecture which is so important in our lives?

This book is a collection of essays on architecture written by 11 leading Korean architects, including Seung H-sang, Chung Ki-yong, Cho Sung-ryong, Kim In-chul, and Min Hyun-sik, who are now active in Korea. The participating architects present their diverse philosophies of architecture under the grand theme of “What is architecture?,” a serious question still unresolved by architects. The 11 helpful and interesting stories introduced in this book include: architecture in general, philosophy of architecture, the importance of architecture as a means of realizing two concept─“residence” and “space,” harmony with the neighboring environment, the problems inherent in the so-called modernism-style of architecture, the necessity of architecture that copes with Korea’s climate, and the difficulty in explaining architecture in language.

This book has answers to lots of question: what is the concept of “dwelling”?; what is the impact of architecture on the dwellers and how could they intercommunicate with architecture?; what is the concept of different places on which architecture is built?; and what is well-made architecture? This book is a kind of introduction to the general readers who are interested in architecture.

The styles, contents and themes in each essay are different as they have been written by different architects. What their essays show in common is their deep introspection and philosophy on Korean architecture along with some criticism and touching remarks. This book also introduces the major architectural works of the leading architects to vividly show what architecture is.

Seung H-sang

Born in 1952, he graduated from Seoul National University and studied at Technische Universitaet in Wien. After working for Kim Swoo Geun for 15 years, he established his own office, ‘IROJE architects & planners,’ in 1989. He was a core member of the ‘4.3 Group,’ which strongly influenced the Korean architectural society, and participated in founding the ‘Seoul School of Architecture,’ a new educational system. He was a visiting professor at North London University (currently London Metropolitan University) and also taught at Seoul National University and Korea National University of Arts. He is the author of Beauty of Poverty (1996), City of Wisdom, Architecture of Wisdom (1999), Architecture, Signs of Thoughts (2004), Landscript (2009), Graveyard for President Roh Moo-hyun (2010), and Old things are All Beautiful (2012). His works are based on his critical concerns of the Western culture of the 20th century, in which the subject is the ‘beauty of poverty’ ; he won various prizes such as the Kim Swoo Geun Culture Award and the Korean Architecture Award for his practice and works. For his participation in constructing the new city as the coordinator for ‘Paju Bookcity,’ the America Institute of Architects invested him with the Honorary Fellowship of AIA in 2002, National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art selected him as ‘2002’s Artist of the Year,’ the first time for any architect, and he held a grand solo architecture exhibition. He gained world-wide fame for his architectural achievements and various international exhibitions; his architectural field expands over Asia, Europe and America. In 2007, the Korean government honored him with the ‘Korea Award for Art and Culture,’ and he was commissioned for the Korean Pavilion of Venice Biennale in 2008 and as director for Gwangju Design Biennale 2011. Since 2014, he, the first City Architect of Seoul Metropolitan Government, is planning and reviewing major public projects in Seoul.

Min Hyun Sik

Min Hyun Sik was born in 1946, Korea. After receiving a BS from Seoul National University in 1970, he worked and studied under Kim Swoo Geun and Yoon Seung Joong. In 1989/90, he studied at the AA School of Architecture in London, UK. In 1992, he started his own practice H. Min Architect and Associates. In 1997, he was a founding member of School of Visual Arts, The Korea National University of Arts, where has taught as a professor until 2012. Since “Housing with Deep Space” exhibited in Echoes of an Era, he has been active in the public arena. Extending his architectural interests into urbanism, he participated in several urban planning and design projects such as the “Paju Landscape Script” for Paju Bookcity, “Gwangju, Asian Cultural Capital City,” “Suwon, Historical and Cultural City,” “Maemooldo Island, Love to Visit” etc. Through works, publications, teaching, and international exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale (2000/02), “Structuring Emptiness” at U-Penn (2003), S(e)oulscape (2008-9), his creative ideas have been at the center of important transitional moments in Korean Architecture and Urbanism.

Junsung Kim

Started architectural study from Universidade Mackenzie at São Paulo, Brazil, and received Bachelor of Architecture Degree from Pratt Institute, Master of Architecture from Columbia University, New York. Returning to Korea, he began his own practice in 1992. He has taught at the Graduate School of Architecture at Kyounggi University as a professor, and a visiting critic at the Korea National University of Arts, Seoul National University and Sam Fox School of Design at Washington University. Currently he is a professor at the Graduate School of Architecture, Konkuk University and a design principal at Architecture Studio hANd.