On the most recent episode of the Archinect Sessions podcast, Professor Paulette Singley discussed her book, “How to Read Architecture.” Her writing and editing expands beyond the world of architecture, looking at connections within the culinary arts and film. Joined by Donna Sink, Ken Koense, and Paul Petrunia, Archinect looked at how Singley’s work is a “must read for architecture students, architects, designers and admirers of the built world.”
How to Read Architecture is based on the fundamental premise that reading and interpreting architecture is something we already do, and that close observation matters. This book enhances this skill so that given an unfamiliar building, you will have the tools to understand it and to be inspired by it. Singley encourages you to misread, closely read, conventionally read, and unconventionally read architecture to stimulate your creative process. The book explores three essential ways to help you understand architecture: reading a building from the outside-in, from the inside-out, and from the position of out-and-out, or formal, architecture.
Dean Ingalill Wahlroos-Ritter said that, “Paulette’s recent book, How to Read Architecture: An Introduction to Interpreting the Built Environment (Routledge, 2019), presents alternative ways in which buildings can be ‘read’, reflecting a generous belief in allowing for a range of positions in what is too often an elitist and exclusive discipline. The significance of this book cannot be overstated. Simply put, she defines a new canon. On every page, Dr. Singley provides alternative examples of architectural thought, theory and built work that provocatively and powerfully provides a model of architectural interpretation alternative to the accepted hegemonic one that we cannot seem to shake. It is an important book with the potential to radically change architectural pedagogy. “
Consistent with Singley’s approach to looking at architecture from outside of the traditional compartmentalization, this book coalesces related fields of interior design, landscape design, and building design, exploring concepts of terroir, scenography, criticality, atmosphere, tectonics, inhabitation, type, form, and enclosure. How to Read Architecture provides a widely accessible format, utilizing examples and case studies to address the complex interaction of context, performative exigencies, and autonomous aesthetic objects.
Listen to episode 150 of Archinect Sessions below.