DesignMENA’s design-meanings: The Urbanist Dictionary

The desire to imprint one’s dreams and visions onto the fabric of urban society lies at the heart of every architect – so, let’s face it, the profession has its share of pretension.

And nowhere can this be made more apparent than in language.

The use of “archi-terms” is a way of showing you are part of the zeitgeist, the thoughts of the age, un spirit de l’epoche, even.

So here are our top “archibabble” expressions (some of which we had a the pleasure of coining):

Architorture – the act of reviewing the work of undergraduate students.

Hypnotecture – a dizzying colour scheme designed to dazzle – but more likely to bring on a headache.

Blobitecture – a building that takes on an organic form for no real reason

Biotect – a term coined by US environmental “Earthship” designer Michael “Mike” Reynolds (see also Greenitect)

Sparsitect – a minimalist designer

Architact- the act of pulling one’s punches when reviewing a rival’s design

Bigitect – a grandiose visionary

Sarcitect – a sarcastic architect

Barkitect – an architect’s dog

Archisect – a group religious fanatics who also happen to be architects

Architexture – building design that appeals to the sense of touch

ArchiTexMex – building design in the Central American style

ArchiT-Rex – an architect so out of touch as to be deemed a dinosaur

And – don’t forget – designMENA’s favourite Starchitect…a designer at the very top of the profession – who archi-nemesis is – wait for it: an “anti-architect”.

If you know of anymore “archi-terms” or want to take a stab at making some of your own terms up – do share in the comment box!


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