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Is architecture a closed book to newcomers?

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Picture yourself as a client building a new house. You've never done it before. You're a bit anxious about the whole process, but you've seen enough episodes of Grand Designs to know that the right way to go about it is to employ an architect.

So you go to the local library and pick up a copy of the AJ, just to get a flavour of what to expect.

And on the front cover you find a picture of an empty room with plastic walls and piles of rubbish and dust on the floor. Instead of walking away confused - after all, you are an enlightened client - you decide to read the architect's account. And so you learn about twonesses and onenesses, land-wall terraces and positively charged voids.

Don't get me wrong, I admire Florian Beigel a lot, and clearly remember an inspiring lecture he gave 10 years ago or more.

But need we look any further to understand why our profession seems cloaked in mystery to the general public/our clients?

Bobby Open, Cambridge

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