– by Sujith.G.S
Based on the presentation Peter gave in Thrissur in February 2, 2015.
Was privileged to attend one of his presentations on his works and ideas, a presentation in which he reinforced the importance of understanding the specifics of each site and designing accordingly, instead of a ‘one size fits all’ strategy that is so prevalent in contemporary architecture today. Quite fittingly, the major part of his presentation was about the uniqueness of each topography, each land formation; put in perspective by the landscapes of his native Australia.
He stressed to reinforce his conviction that the natural systems around us hold the key to the propagation of a truly sustainable, sensible and sensitive way of life and of practicing architecture. He exhorted us, practicing architects and students to go beyond superficial issues and address fundamental questions on architecture – those of mood, of place making, of emotions, of spatial quality, of good detailing, of livability – and of timelessness.
His works were a true reflection of his strong convictions and there is an inherent thread of continuity in terms of ideas, across all his projects, though the spatial manifestation varies according to the idiosyncronacies of the specific site. It was truly an inspiring talk, a call for us to step back and evaluate the direction we are heading – for, as Peter very subtly pointed out – we are dead if we blindly follow the West. What we require is a new direction, born out of our own context, one addressing our unique concerns.