Total Architecture Philosophy

The Philosophy of Total Design in Architectural Projects

Total Architecture Philosophy

What does “total architecture” really mean today? What does it mean, let’s say, after postmodernism? Whenever man imagined he had found ``endless beauty`` he fell back into imitation and stagnation. Total design is the synergistic result of constant growth, tradition and innovation. Its excellence must be dynamic, not static, to serve as an inexhaustible source of inspiration, comfort and well-being.

Total design has two meanings: first, what might be called the implosion of design, the focusing of design inward on a single intense point; second, what might be called the explosion of design, the expansion of design out to touch every possible point in the world. In either case,the architect is in control, centralizing, orchestrating, dominating.

Total design has two meanings: first, what might be called the implosion of design, the focusing of design inward on a single intense point; second, what might be called the explosion of design, the expansion of design out to touch every possible point in the world. In either case,the architect is in control, centralizing, orchestrating, dominating.

The paradigm of this approach is the domestic interior completely detached from the chaotic pluralism of the world. A whole generation of remarkable architects—including Bruno Taut, Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, Josef Hoffmann, Josef Maria Olbrich, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Hendrik Berlage, Peter Behrens, and Henry van der Velde—produced hyperinteriors that enveloped their occupants in a single, seamless multimedia garment.

Inspired by Richard Wagner’s mid-19th-century concept of the “total work of art,” in which different art forms would collaborate to produce a singular experience, these designers were eager to place the architect at the center of the process: the architect would orchestrate the overall theatrical effect.

Collaborative organizations of artists such as the Vienna Secession carried out an architectural mission; they would implode design to create environments with an extraordinary density of sensuous effect.

A total architecture is by necessity an artificial system; such arrangements do not arise in nature.