Book review: Digital Culture in Architecture


Digital Culture in Architecture: An Introduction for the Design Professions, by Antoine Picon

There is something odd about a hard-copy book devoted to emergent technologies. It feels old before its time. Aren’t practicing architects’ methods more likely to be shaped on the job, or by the real-time peer reviews that social networks are starting to provide?

Either way, Antoine Picon is aware of the tension. As an historian, he charts a course between long-view philosophical musings on the one hand and the over-excitement of early-adopters on the other.

Digital Culture in Architecture does well in placing recent developments in their historical context, while still arguing that there is something unique about digitisation in society and culture.

Picon alternates slices of theory and practice, and clusters examples in three areas: the influence of digital technologies on architectural form, on the sensory experience of architecture, and on the relationship of individuals to urban environments.

This is not a crossover title. It makes few concessions to the non-academic reader. Nor does it go out of its way to be particularly fluent, and in this it’s not helped by laissez-faire copyediting. But it avoids obscurity thanks to the good measure of well-appointed illustrated examples that signpost the essays.

Digital Culture in Architecture: An Introduction for the Design Professions
Author: Antoine Picon
Format: Book
Pages: 225
Publisher: Birkhauser
Date Published: Apr 2010
Stock Code: 71709
ISBN: 9783034602594
Binding: Paperback


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