How does an architect decide that they want to become an architect? It most likely originates from a love for famous buildings, architectural wonders, majestic masterpieces that have been able to move people since inception. There are many famous buildings – some we recognise from the movies and some from seeing them in person. Design Scape Architects lays out some of their favourite buildings and some interesting facts.
The Empire State Building
If you can’t put your finger on what the Empire State Building is then you’ve been living under a rock. In fact, the building is so popular, it has become a large part of TV, music and film pop culture. Remember that scene in King Kong with Naomi Watts where Kong climbs to the top of that tall building? Yes, that’s the one. Created by John J. Raskob and former Governor Al Smith, they wanted to create the tallest building in New York. At the time in the 1920’s, the building was competing with the creators of the Chrysler building. After years of competition, the Chrysler team finally succumbed to the Empire State’s overwhelming 1,250 feet stature over New York City. The building remained the tallest building in the city for 40 years until the first World Trade Centre was built in 1970.
The Eiffel Tower in Paris
Would Paris be the same without the famous Eiffel Tower? Would any romantic comedy film have the same ambiance if it didn’t feature this iconic building? Maybe; or maybe not. This monumental piece of art was built in 1889 at a time in Europe known as the Renaissance period. This period in time inspired many artists, architects and musicians to create many of the groundbreaking work we know today – and the Eiffel Tower is no different. The building is so popular that the lifts inside cover a distance of 103,000 km’s per year. That’s two and half times the circumference of the Earth!
Big Ben in London
When Big Ben was originally built in 1859, it was painted blue, but due to London’s overwhelming storm of smoke and grime, it turned black! It was later on decided to paint it black to avoid another (rather expensive) paint job. In 2012, the building was renamed Elizabeth Tower to commemorate the Queen’s Jubilee Year. The name Big Ben actually refers to the bell that rings daily at midday.
The Flatiron Building in New York
This unique block of flats has often been referenced in movies, sitcoms based in New York City as well as used as inspiration for painters and photographers. What makes this building unique is its triangular shape. Originally known as the Fuller Building, it was constructed in 1902 during the height of the Renaissance Revival period and is located on the famous 5th Avenue. When people think of New York City, they think of skyscrapers, a bustling city that never sleeps and the place where many architects used that nocturnal energy to create some of the most famous architectural wonders. It is no wonder the Flatiron Building makes the cut for some of the world’s most recognizable masterpieces.
The Louvre Museum in Paris
Imagine walking into a building knowing 38,000 pieces of work representing art from pre-history to the 21st century, covering locations in Africa, Europe, Asia, the Middle East as well as central figures like Pablo Picasso, Monet and Vincent Van Gogh? Well, that building would be The Louvre in Paris, France. It’s the largest art museum in the world and hosts an annual drove of tens of millions of visitors. Parts of The Louvre – the eldest parts – stem all the way back to the 12th century, before the infamous King Louis the 16th lost his head to the working class.