Sample Research Paper on Relationship Between Culture and Architecture:German Architecture


Culture and its complexity always traverse and cut across Architecture. In ornament and crime, Adolf Loos argues that “ornament does not represent our culture any more since it has seized to be in relationship with this culture of ours”[1]by so claiming, he describes the fact of current culture being associated to the most recent architecture. A given a nation or a region is often defined and identified by its cultural setup, it terms of people and their own governance procedures, but not only that is enough, architecture thrown into the discussion plays a very important role in its identification. Architecture is termed as the operation sphere where ideas of objects construction is portrayed, bringing out the inner motive of another subject, thus opening up public perception of a feature – like a house. When culture links up with architecture, human sociology is brought out as a nexus.

Overview of the German Architecture

Architecture is simply playing around with ideas and coming up with activities which can be carried in space in order to bring out a visualized entity. On the other hand, culture is simply portraying a certain ethnic beliefs or deeds, often in a communal setting in adherence to norms of a place. Having put this in mind, one can only come up with two scenarios. The cultural setups have undergone tremendous change in most parts of the world, due to the fact that new technologies are coming up for the new contemporary upcoming generations. Thus many cultures which respect so many principals are going to be ruined and in turn bring up adverse effects on the climates of the various regions.

Industrial revolution in Germany has brought about many changes in the nation, which in turn has affected the culture eventually catching up with having a conflict between the culture of various places and the environment, having previously enjoyed a serene and comfortable setting with a harmonious relationship between architecture of buildings which respected the environment. Whenever we tend to approach culture in an industrial setting, there emerges a conflict between itself and the culture of its formal gathering bringing into question the economic criteria and the nationwide gain. A question now emerges, how then is this German culture related with the architecture in various places where the ideas are at play? To be able to bring up the question in a debate mode, we have to give it a chance to be regarded as a strategy rather than a policy.

When analysis is being done by governments for economic gains in terms of policy making, architecture is often criticizedstraightforwardly in this economic analysis.[2] Thus having architecture in daily lives of many individuals conclusively underscores the possibility of cultural preservation in a formal setup in every society. To be able to come up with a policy that protects, promotes and enhances the cultural environment directives have to be shaped up towards this architecture and for that matter, evaluative ones to be precise.

Whenever a behavior arises which in this context is an artifact which is to be portrayed, confines of the development properties are specified and the design carried out. This ends when a designer has managed to put across the description and inter-connection of the whole system.[3]Whenever architecture starts to deviate away from the norms set aside by a certain culture, a dis connect develops altogether which brings in the question of sustainability of that particular architecture as a whole. This can only be rectified by taking a consideration of the various factors associated to culture and architecture, inan attempt to try and connect them together and by doing so preventing a catastrophe which comes up from a dis connect like environmental pollution.

When you want to come up with a design, you can simply formulate it by “the principle of problem solving in searching through space for a problem”[4], an argument put across byNewell.When you want to come up with a design, you make a consideration for the alternative configuration, alternative components of the design together with other parameter involved. After the design has been carried out, a proper critique is carried out to evaluate the final architecture versus the culture. This essay depicts culture in two contexts; one which highlights the cultural aspect in relation to the ancient German architecture while the second part highlights the cultural point of view in the Contemporary German architecture. The two cultural examinations are described in the following sections, briefly highlighting the critical elements and factors, in conjunction with the criticism with which the culture and architecture can be related upon. Both try to connect the realm of human existence to the architectural environment.[5]

Culture in Traditional German Architecture

Culture is used to signify colure is a Latin word which implies cultivation, to worship or have a place to inhabit. Culture itself is defined as the sequence of events which leads to acquiring of materials or technology and immaterial or certain beliefs or values in societal gathering, which are intended to help the people living in that society to achieve or meet the needs which might arise from the mutual relationship between the nature or environment they dwell  in(climate), and that environment which they have themselves generated, getting to transfer it with a transcendence among every generation that may come henceforth. Culture itself is associated with various basic setups, which includes culture related to the environment like the technology and geographical factors, culture related to man like the science and economics, culture related to human relations like the language, art and lastly culture related to the super nature like the religion.

 In the critique of a design from architecture, relationship between man and the environment is the most appropriate as it will lead to the sustainable architecture, especially given the fact that the geographical setting of the place is the most influential factor to the cultural characteristics. This dos and don’ts are more so limited to the fact that the behavioral patterns in that particular region are favorable to the type of architecture practiced, intertwining the two elements of culture and environment together, a body of architecture termed as vernacular architecture.  Type of architecture is very limiting, given the fact that it gives a very small window, if at all any to violation of the relation between cultural aspects and the architectural designs formulated.

Culture and Contemporary Architecture of Germany

The contemporary German architecture has really evolved since its inception, bringing out the very many changes which are not only to bring out the cultural and climatic sustainability, meeting the set standards in the region but also, they happen to have completely headed in the opposite direction. A lot of energy has been consumed in the process, giving out a very high amount of pollution in the environment hence sustainability of contemporary architecture and the culture has been breached. This is especially observed in the housing sector where a lot of the construction has been under taken. James Steele, who has transcended the field of modern architecture by matching a lot of architecture to the cultural demands, states in his “Architecture for people” a nation which tries to come up with a building by using its own architecture provides a greater chance for theirtraditions, language and habits to be expressed in its own better forms.[6]He also ascertains that these features of this naturebring out a better relationship between norms and culture.[7]

The consideration of these factors whenever architecture of buildings in each land is to be brought up, helps in bringing a simple imagination of the people needs taking into account a clear perspective of the environmental matters which are intended to be preserved by the cultural setting. This has led to the contemporary architecture providing new theories to be able to link between the past architecture and the present architecture.

Sustainable architecture in the past

The architecture of Germany has undergone a paradigm shift where the design of buildings is being done on basis of architecture that seems sustainable. Unlike other buildings, the architecture of this buildings are normally done on in the sense that whenever an addition is to be done it’s found to be easier and that they happen to be in the general regulations of the environment. This is evidenced by the German Reichstag buildingfrom the work by Ssaber and Behrang.[8] It has a roof which is built in the shape of a dome to and happens to be clear in that it illuminates the interior giving the natural light. It is also equipped with solar panels which serve the building with its energy requirements, has a sustainable architecture.


Having looked at both the scenarios, we can draw our conclusion that architecture does not by any means give or covey the form but rather brings out the meaning of a certain concept. With its two main principles being breached by any means, which happen to be both scientific and cultural, the outcome will eventually isuncompleted, bringing in the issue of unsustainability. In any case it happens that models developed by traditional culture have been repeated by any community, this is deemed to be a wrong endeavor since. Since it’s a direct imitation of another piece of a work, without looking at an in depth analysis of the outcomes was it to be implemented in that setting of a totally different culture. Having said this sustainability of a new development will only depend on the review and improvement of the concepts in contemporary architecture in relation to the cultural setting for that particular new development.



Brooder, Newell. Reasoning, Problem Solving and Decision Process: The problem space as a

fundamental category, in Attention and Performance.Nickerson Hillsdale: Lawrence Erlbaum publishers, 1980.

Loos, Adolf.Ornament and Crime. Cahiers, Vienna: Innsbruck, 1910.

Steele, James. Architecture for the people: The complete works of Hassan Fadhi.Hampshire, Watson-

Guptill press, n.d.

Reyhanehoseledar, Ssaber and Behrang Daryayelaal. An Overview of the Relationship between Culture

and Energy Sustainability in Traditional Iranian Architecture. AstaneAshrafiye: Islamic Azad

University press, 2015.

[1] Adolf Loos, Ornament and Crime (Cahiers, Vienna: Innsbruck, 1910),179.

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid., 180.

[4] Newell Brooder, Reasoning, Problem Solving and Decision Process: The problem space as a fundamental category, in Attention and Performance (Nickerson Hillsdale, Lawrence Erlbaum publishers, 1980), 195.

[5] Ibid.

[6] James Steele, Architecture for the people: The complete works of Hassan Fadhi (Hampshire, Watson-Guptill press), 155.

[7] Ibid., 179.

[8]Reyhanehoseledar Ssaber and Behrang Daryayelaal, An Overview of the Relationship between Culture and Energy Sustainability in Traditional Iranian Architecture (AstaneAshrafiye:Islamic Azad University press, 2015), 45.