Mark Hemel

Mark Hemel

Mark Hemel (born 1966 in Emmen, Netherlands) is a Dutch architect and designer, and co-founder (with Barbara Kuit) of the Amsterdam-based architectural practice Information Based Architecture (IBA). Mark's focus is on "global architecture". His main interest is to play a role in the expression and development of our contemporary culture. In his view Architecture can play an important and positive role in shedding light on potential routes "our" global culture could take. Mark Hemel: "The next generation of planners, architects and designers will have to get used thinking big, so making reference to big environmental challenges and mayor expected world population dynamic. Architects in particular will find themselves less and less powerful. We therefore have to focus on making our work more "information based" or we might get side-lined and more and more irrelevant". His solution is to strive for 'TRUE' integration of the different aspects of design and planning, starting with small steps at the time. He pleads for getting rid of the modern valuation-system of measuring everything in terms of money, efficiency and functionality, and instead calls for a more holistic valuation system that weighs small but essential and strategic influences against the more superficial and big and more obvious influences. Mark proclaims that "recent decades of science have shown us that we should not ignore the small, and that we should focus on the interrelationship of seemingly independent things. The world is a global world, everything on it, including the people, form one holistic whole. We should go beyond Modernism's mayor fault: splitting problems into sub-sets in order to solve them independently, in the process destroying the interrelationship." He therefore pleads for "biological intelligence" to be introduced in the architecture and planning professions. Hemel is currently working on a book in which the term "biological intelligence" will be introduced.

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