101 Things I Didn’t Learn in Architecture School

An article written by Guy Horton as part of The Indicator column in archdaily.
I've highlighted some of the most poignant  to me.



9] It’s architecture, not medicine. You can take a break and no one will die.
10] Significant others are more important than architecture; they are the ones who will pull you through in the end. See 49.
12] The industry underpays. Push for what you are worth.
18] Get the biggest monitor you can.
19] Do not, however, ask for two monitors. Even though it makes you look like a bad-ass you will be expected to do twice the amount of work.
26] Understand how your office is run as a business and how they go after projects.
31] Be suspicious if your firm expects you to work long hours of overtime for no compensation. Be doubly suspicious if they justify it by saying things like, “It’s just part of the learning curve” or “We had to go through this, too.”
34] Don’t dress like an intern. See 72.
38] If your firm is outsourcing work to save money, be concerned.
39] Architecture firms can have multiple glass ceilings. Be aware of them all.
40] If a principal of a firm sees making coffee or moving boxes as beneath him/her, consider looking for another office.
45] Architects are in a service industry. They provide services to clients.

46] In proportion to their pay, architects require the most education, most training, and the most exams to become licensed professionals.
48] Embrace the business-side of architecture.
49] If you are an architect you should automatically qualify for psychotherapy and medication.
 50] Most architects believe they were destined to become architects because of their early childhood experiences. They showed signs of architectural greatness at a very young age. This is a myth that reinforces an unhealthy hero complex. See 49.
53] Do not take design strategies or operations learned in studio too seriously.
56] All firms are different. Shop.
57] To save time, assume your wife is right.
60] If you are married when you go to architecture school, studio ends at 7:00.
63] If your studio instructor is a recent graduate, be alarmed.
64] Do not obsess about sustainability to the exclusion of other factors.
67] Read Rem Koolhaas, but do not obsess and fantasize about being him. Delirious New York is still relevant.
69] Keep in touch with everyone you know, especially if they aren’t in architecture.
70] In fact, make friends who are not architects.
71] Do not wear the same shoes every day, They will start to smell.
72] Make sure your jeans are up-to-date. No acid-wash. No baggy.
74] If you must read Italo Calvino, read more than just Invisible Cities.
75] Expect a period of post-traumatic stress disorder after you graduate. Do not make any important decisions during this time.
77] Architecture is fueled by fetishes—rectilinear designer eyewear, for instance.

78] When trying to decide if a theory book is good, check the bibliography first.

81] If you already have a B.Arch, consider further education in a different field. Your M.Arch. can’t make a real contribution to the field if you’re just showing off software skills.
84] Architecture firms should consider forming economic alliances similar to OPEC.
87] The eighties and postmodernism were not all bad.
89] Architect’s web pages are often out of control and take too long to load.

90] In one’s life there are a finite number of all-nighters one can pull. You probably used them all up in school.
91] Understand the contexts from which modernism arose.
92] When the economy is good architects can rely on experience to run firms, but when the economy is bad they need advanced business skills they may not possess.
93] Architecture is dependent on boom and bust cycles.
94] Good design is not necessarily the most important factor in running a successful architecture firm.
95] Branding is important.
96] In a corporate firm, those at the top are not necessarily the best but they may have been there the longest.
100] Architecture office parking lots communicate success. There should be at least a couple high-end luxury cars. If there are a lot of beaters, be wary. If all cars are beaters, don’t go in.
101] Be concerned when you are too idle at work.

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