As one strolls through the grand plazas and hallways of the world’s most iconic buildings, it becomes clear these structures speak a deeper language beyond their functional roles. They are profound expressions of the very people who conceived them – embodiments of the architects’ philosophies, life experiences, and artistic souls. By truly experiencing these masterpieces firsthand, one can peel back the concrete and steel to gain rare insight into the creative visionaries behind the blueprints.

Understanding architect's perspective through their design-Sheet1
Falling Water _© Yuhan_Du

Take Frank Lloyd Wright for example. This maverick firmly believed that organic architecture should seamlessly coexist with the natural environment rather than shunning it. You can witness his ethos on full display at Fallingwater, where Wright boldly constructed the house atop a cascading waterfall, allowing the rushing creek to flow beneath and around the cantilevered terraces.

 Even Wright’s urban behemoths, like New York’s Guggenheim Museum, evoke the perfection found in nature through the smooth, spiralling rotundas reminiscent of whirlpools and seashells. As you bask withinside the warm temperature of the museum`s curved partitions and abundance of herbal light, you cannot assist however sense the architect’s profound reverence for the outside even inside this artificial jewel.

Understanding architect's perspective through their design-Sheet2
Guggenheim Museum, New York _© Reno Laithienne

As visitors meander through the open floor plans and crystalline pavilions, they find themselves enveloped in environments of visual clarity and rational transparency that reflect the architect’s pursuit of achieving maximal impact through minimal components. It is an exercise in special perfection and truth brought to life as only Mies could envision.

 More recently, the barrier-obliterating work of the late Zaha Hadid brought a sense of fluidity and dynamism to contemporary architecture that was unmatched. Whether crafting museums, performing arts centres, or university buildings, Hadid eschewed traditional rectilinear designs in favour of curves, angles, and sweeping lines that seemed to defy both gravity and conventional Construction norms.

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Heydar Aliyev Centre _© Ondrej Bocek

 When experiencing Hadid’s architectural compositions, such as her MAXXI Museum in Rome or the Heydar Aliyev Center in Baku, one feels transported into a futuristic, almost surreal world where structures take on organic, seamless forms sculpted by unseen forces of nature itself. As sunlight and shadows interplay across the sinuous surfaces, the buildings are imbued with a sense of constant movement as if frozen amidst an elegant dance.

 Through these unorthodox yet thoughtful explorations of geometries and unconventional materials like concrete and fibreglass, Hadid welcomed observers to rethink and challenge their innate understandings of what architecture is supposed to look like and how it can transcend stale conceptual boundaries. 

 Naturally, many great architects turned to their cultural identities and ancestral roots to inspire their work. Brazil‘s Oscar Niemeyer boldly showcased the Latin currents of sculpture and art that flowed through his designs of soaring, undulating structures like the Cathedral of Brasília that resembled a hybrid between a Mexican Pueblo and a modernist crown. With thick, curvaceous reinforced concrete walls moulded into sweeping contours and parabolic forms, the spaces celebrated their tropical climate while capturing Brazil’s forward-thinking spirit.

 On the other side of the globe, India’s Charles Correa paid homage to his nation’s rich architectural heritage through works that deftly wove elements of traditional courtyard layouts and carved sandstone details into modern, open-air designs. His ingenious Jamathin Mosque and British Council Library reflected Correa’s belief in forging innovative yet contextual structures respectful of their cultural identities and surroundings.

 Indeed, for many virtuosos like these, architecture served as a powerful channel for expressing their societal observations and ideological perspectives. They did not simply design spaces for function, but as mediums to inspire deeper contemplation on humanity’s existence, spirituality, relationship with the environment, and more.

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Chichu Art Museum _© Ichikawa. K

 This higher philosophic purpose is perhaps best exemplified by Japan’s Tadao Ando, whose mastery over cast-in-place concrete and reverence for natural light produced profoundly poetic constructions that evoked transcendental experiences. The Church of the Light, with its paradoxical cruciform cut into the walls to allow precise rays to illuminate the sanctuary, or the Chichu Art Museum seamlessly embedded into the earth, are just two examples where Ando’s works elevate architecture into the realms of consecrated, quasi-spiritual domains for connecting with one’s metaphysical inner self.

 As diverse as each architect’s styles, visions, and messages were, one unifying thread persists: these maestros did not simply construct buildings to serve clients or satisfy civic needs alone. No, their true masterworks represent highly personal expressions – extensions of their psyches, beliefs, and souls immortalised for generations to experience and appreciate long after the visionaries themselves departed.

 By allowing ourselves to become fully immersed in their spaces, to absorb the energy they emitted through their geometries, materials, and massing, we are granted a rare opportunity to peer into the minds of these architectural poets and gain a deeper understanding of not just how they designed structures, but why. And in doing so, we gain a more enriched perspective into the infinite possibilities of human creativity, passion, and imagination laid bare through the built environment around us.


  1. Du, Y. (no date) Yuhan Du (@yuhandu): Unsplash Photo Community, Beautiful Free Images & Pictures. Available at: (Accessed: May 2024). 
  2. Laithienne, R. (no date) Reno Laithienne (@renolaithienne): Unsplash Photo Community, Beautiful Free Images & Pictures. Available at: (Accessed: May 2024). 
  3. Bocek, O. (no date) Ondrej Bocek (@happyna): Unsplash Photo Community, Beautiful Free Images & Pictures. Available at: (Accessed: 21 May 2024). 
  4. Ichikawa, K. (no date) Chichu Art Museum, · Avaunt Magazine. Available at: (Accessed: May 2024). 



Noorul Ameera, an architecture student, writer, and artist, enjoys learning about Classic architectural design. Her interests in art and travel intersect, demonstrating her constant commitment to exploring new viewpoints and learning about architectural legacy. Her passionate admiration for Malaysia motivates her to explore its cultural heritage of architecture.