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The Impacts of Deconstructivism towards the Future of New Zealand Architecture Designs

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Architecture
Wordcount: 3963 words Published: 8th Feb 2020

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Abstract: The Impacts of Deconstructivism towards the Future of New Zealand Architecture Designs

The importance of this report is to introduce deconstructivism as a new perspective to New Zealand building designs to create an innovative architecture with consideration of how it will impact New Zealand in the future. Deconstructivism has been recognized as a movement that can revolutionise the world of architecture because it will evolve the style of buildings in New Zealand if performed in a beautiful manner, so it is prominent to keep an interest towards deconstructivism.

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Deconstructivism has not been a widely used design technique in New Zealand because most of the buildings in New Zealand follows the common designs. A lot of these radical deconstructive design are left as conceptual sketches that are yet to be explored, therefore, the idea of deconstructivism has not been fully utilized in New Zealand which is preventing New Zealand from exploiting the hidden potentials of current designs for the future.

The research date has been collected through research from architectural information suppliers, deconstructivist articles and deconstructivism books. This includes theory papers, encyclopaedia, magazine and journals conducted by famous authors and architects.

There have only been a few buildings in New Zealand that could be identified as deconstructivism, so these mesmerizing designs need to be experienced more. The design style should appeal to those interested in buildings with unique aesthetics, creation of new forms, prospective architecture and revolutionary designs. Architect designers should be flexible and have more knowledge around this design style. Clients should be able to fully express their perspective of beauty through their ideas and create a contrasting building compared to the current New Zealand buildings, so that more unpredictable, innovative architecture are introduced to New Zealand.

Important Keywords: Deconstructivism, Innovative Architecture, Exploiting Potentials, Unique Aesthetics and Unpredictability.

How will Deconstructivism influence the future of New Zealand architecture from its current designs?

The current New Zealand architectural designs focus more on structural utility rather than its aesthetics; therefore, it uses common design styles such as formalized and functional shapes that are applied in a cosmopolitan manner.
The current New Zealand architecture expresses mostly the clarity and simplicity of forms which eliminates every unnecessary detail to utilize the purpose and space of the building rather than seeking a unique style that emphasizes the originality and innovation of the design. It focuses more on the natural appearance of the building rather than composing an altered design to represent a different form. Frank Lloyd Wright has a dictum which expresses “Form follows Function”, stating that the purpose of the building should be where the design is directly derived from. The current designs focus on pure form as the true architectural beauty.

Deconstructivism is a different perspective towards the beauty of architecture and the way it will influence the current New Zealand architecture is by introducing a different approach to its architectural style.
Deconstructivism is a post-modern architectural style that which expresses a futuristic architecture through its explosive aesthetic approach. It is a way of exploring new forms and volumes by composing unique designs to unleash infinite design possibilities by breaking the rules of current architecture through the defiance of geometric norms as a movement towards the future of architecture. In 1988, an Architectural exhibition for Deconstructivist was held by Mark Wigley and Philip Johnson, featuring designs by famous architects stating that the exhibition shows a different sensibility, one that disturbs our ability to think about pure forms. The projects exploit the hidden potentials of modern designs which makes deconstructivism.

In order to obtain information regarding the possible influences of Deconstructivism to the current New Zealand architecture research were conducted from an Architectural article and book. The information emphasizes on the contemporary influences of deconstruction as a true form of architecture – in aesthetical perspective. Insights were used to incorporate the idea of deconstructivism towards the current New Zealand building designs to view the future of New Zealand architecture if deconstructivism was administered.

The clear difference between deconstructivism and the current designs of New Zealand is their perspective towards the forms of architecture. The current architecture pays a lot of attention to keeping the original works which is the most logical way to create a building whereas deconstructivism undermines reason and logic. It believes in the fluidity of architecture, meaning that architecture should be always changing to improve and continue to revolutionise to innovate the future of New Zealand architecture.

Deconstructivism may be confused as an act of defiance against the current architectural designs of New Zealand because it is considered as a leap ‘out of the box’. However, deconstructivism does not necessarily ignore the significance of structural stability and the utilization of the purpose of the building. It breaks the rules of modern architecture because it defies the geometric norms but the rules of the current architecture can still be applied whilst integrating the idea of deconstructivism to create a design that emphasizes not only the functional purpose of the building but also the uniqueness of the building.

What will be the advantages of deconstructivism towards the future of New Zealand architectural style?

Deconstructivism allows architects to produce buildings with highly respectable aesthetic sense through its excellent manipulation of the building design structure into unpredictable shapes or form.
The ideal style of deconstructivism is to make New Zealand architecture more flexible through fragmentation of developed building designs to explore new asymmetric designs with its core functionality maintained throughout the whole spatial design. Basically, it focuses more on the freedom of forms than the functionality concerns, the deconstructive style aims to perplex ‘the eye of the beholder’ to make every part of the design an experience worth to remember. The idea was developed by Jacques Derrida, a French philosopher in 1980’s that deconstructivism is a way of exploring asymmetric geometries through fragmentation of building designs while preserving the function of the building as a deconstructivist movement.

Deconstructivism abandons the strict rules of architectural constructs to create extremely forward-thinking projects in exchange, leading New Zealand architecture to an innovative future.
The future of New Zealand architecture will be full of prospective buildings if deconstructivism is utilized because the design style pushes every structural element to their limits in terms of creating unique polygonal shapes and unusual designs. This leads to building designs with highly expressive and sensibility artistic intent, creating a different appearance to every architectural construction if applied in New Zealand buildings for an iconoclastic design. One of the top deconstructivist architects is Daniel Libeskind, a Polish-Jewish architect who is famous for his sharp, strict action of glass, steel and shapes pushed to their structural restrictions which are featured in his buildings Frederic Hamilton Building, Iconic in France, Crystals in Las Vegas and more.

Deconstructivism is an idea of dismantling or disrupting the notion of pure form, however, another point of deconstructivism is to allow the clients to explore their ideal structural designs that they want to display on their building and integrate them into one constructed structure.
This approach allows the clients and architects to work together to create a unique combination of design elements such as sharp/angular forms, light volumes, play of light and landscape which are then integrated into their architectural designs. Allowing clients to express their ideas as much they want increases the fluidity of the building, which enables them to appreciate the building on every angle of the structure because it creates buildings with functional framework and spatial with great complexity, unexpected and constantly changing views from both the interior and exterior of the building spaces.

The insights regarding the advantages of deconstructivism towards the future of New Zealand architecture has been researched from an Architectural electronic book supplier websites Issuu, Widewalls, Vice and Archdaily which focuses on Deconstructivism as an idea for ‘Breaking the Future’. The investigation consisted of how the future will be positively exhibited by Deconstructivism through its unique characteristics. The information was used to identify the difference between Deconstructivism and the current New Zealand architecture in terms of aesthetics, innovation and formality.

The distinction between deconstructivism against the current design style would be that the unpredictability of deconstructivism will allow the future of New Zealand to create more diversity such as their people, New Zealand buildings can also have different styles. Deconstructivism will also allow New Zealand to create prospective buildings by implementing rare structural characteristics that the Client wants to emphasize on their building.

Why would Clients be interested to avail to deconstructivism in comparison to the common New Zealand building designs?

Everyone has different creative ideas towards what kind of building they would like to experience and Deconstructivism is the best architectural style to approach in order to be able to express their ideas.
Clients will only be able to fully express the types of building designs they would like to be constructed if they avail to deconstructivism because it unlocks unusual yet artistic design outlines. This means that the flexibility of deconstructivism will enable New Zealand architecture to evolve one building at a time because each building will define a different meaning. According to Maryam Memarian, the aim of deconstructivism is to meet the expectations of both the retrospective and prospective visions of the Clients and consider all to transcend time.

Deconstructivism represents a different approach towards the beauty of architecture as it is a transition of style that focuses on making structures outlooking towards aesthetics.
Clients with a strong interest towards a fun and creative perspective of architecture will be able to appreciate the ideal representation of deconstructivism because it satisfies change, compatibility, and flexibility. Frank Gehry is one of the best deconstructivist to ever exist and he believes that deconstructivism defines your best work because it is an expression of yourself and every building should be treated like a sculpture that responses to our feelings and spirit.

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Deconstructivism uses abstract operations through skilful manipulations to generate prospective building forms which will intrigue Clients that are interested in an exciting futuristic building design.
Clients want their buildings to emphasize a unique message compared to the current New Zealand buildings and the best way to do that is to apply a deconstructive design because it does not follow one trend, but hundreds or thousands of different things in a single building. The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao by Frank Gehry is the prime example of a building type which can be constructed in New Zealand that can represent a prospective design, one that rejects the past and present to aggressively challenge the human sense of architecture.
Clients can also apply deconstructivism to an existing building by manipulating ideas of the structure’s exterior and interior spaces to renew the visual appearance of the finished building either by renovating or recycling.

Applying deconstructivism on an existing building will create a building with a controlled chaos and stimulating unpredictability which can be used as an extension of the client’s interest into perspective. An example of a building that has been manipulated with deconstructivism applied is Ironbank in Auckland. This building consisted of five towers which has been fragmented vertically in a sustainable manner to articulate the composition of stacked building spaces in order to harmonise perfectly with the Client’s ideal context.

The observation regarding the characteristics of deconstructivism that may appeal to the clients in comparison to the common New Zealand building designs has been sourced from a theory paper, magazine, and encyclopaedia. The common New Zealand building designs follow the idea of seeking to utilize limited spaces to its maximum capabilities in order to make structural designs that focused entirely to its use whereas the idea of deconstructivism is different because it aims to create new concepts from within the Clients’ heart.
This idea enables the clients to show a high level of appreciation because they can pour all their thoughts into a constructed structure. Deconstructivism is a complex design but once people realise the greatness of exploring a unique explosive, irregular design they will see not only one beauty from a structure but they will see thousands of beauties from a single structure due to the fact that it conveys more than one idea.

What are the common design traits of the current New Zealand building designs, and how can deconstructivism be used to exploit these designs to create an innovative design style?

One of the most common design traits in the current New Zealand building designs is that they tend to use a lot of rectangular forms.
It is believed that the predominance of rectangular shape is because it has a superior flexibility in terms of geometrical dimensioning which helps with utilizing the space. This helps with fitting standard furniture and fittings easier, which is more cost-effective in comparison to other shapes. However, this basic design can be simple and boring because it lacks the incentives of an innovative design.
The rectangular shape can be exploited by identifying the purpose for each space of the building and then fragment the rectangular shape into a deconstructed shape which can still utilize the function of the space. This way the space would still be functional and innovative at the same time.

Deconstructivism is an architectural style that applies embellishment in many styles that distinguishes a unique characteristic for every building interiors and exteriors.
Most New Zealand buildings are simple and straightforward, which means that they are lacking unpredictability. A building should have a unique feature that captures the attention of the people by using techniques such as using geometry to evoke abstract expressionism. For example, the Vitra Design Museum by Frank Gehry used to be a bare and boring cube-shaped building, but it has been manipulated into a refreshed deconstructed building that is ‘one of a kind’ as of today. This can be applied to New Zealand existing or future buildings.

New Zealand buildings focuses so much on structural functionality and flawlessness that they ignore the idea of creating aesthetically beautiful architecture.
While it is important to build a structure with a strong stability and unity, it is also important to challenge these essentials with deconstruction. It does not mean to dismantle the buildings apart or ignore the harmony but to combine two perspectives, which means to focus on structural stability while also focusing on building aesthetics. Mark Wigley, a New Zealand born architect describes this as seeking unfamiliarity within the familiar. It does not disregard the context of the building, but instead it makes certain elements of the building thematic.

The information following the common traits of New Zealand buildings were collected from a supplier magazine, journal and an article. The information was used to designate the common traits of New Zealand buildings and associate them with deconstructivism in order to exploit the following traits in order to turn them into prospective designs, which is good for the future of New Zealand architecture.

New Zealand buildings tend to use the technique of “form follows function” which aims to use simple forms that maximises the space of the building, but they are lacking characteristics since they focus more on functionality over aesthetics.
An innovative design could be reached upon the use of fragmentation, embellishment and paying attention to aesthetics. Therefore, the best way for New Zealand architecture to reach the prospective era would be to apply deconstructivism in combination with the current building designs. This would result into a building with thoughts of functionality and stability but as well as considering the beauty of the building, not only from the Client’s perspective but also the visitors.

What will be the disadvantages of deconstructivism towards the future of New Zealand architectural style?

Deconstructivism is a great movement towards the future of New Zealand architecture, however, it can also have a negative impact.
The character of deconstructivist architecture is based on manipulation and fragmentation of a structure’s skin or surface, but this can lead to a misconception if the style is misunderstood. This type of architecture can seem like the idea is to demolish or tear apart an existing structure or to construct a new building without the concerns of functionality and stability, which is a common thought to people who are just introduced to deconstructivism. Having no idea about how to approach deconstructivism will lead to a building with extreme unpredictability and uncontrolled chaos that is prone to destruction due to minimal stability.

The main challenge of deconstructivism is that its unsettling designs disrupts the thoughts of architecture.
Deconstructivism can be viewed as a new paradigm in the ladder of architecture, but some people can evaluate deconstructivism as a type of architecture with little social significance and having ambiguous meaning. People often question the wisdom of deconstructivism and how it will impact the future generations of New Zealand architecture and the environment. It is unavoidable that this approach can be fundamentally destructive, because people can apply this style thinking that it rejects all architectural rules and that it also lacks the clear values to replace those rules.

Applying deconstructivism is an intentional aggression to the human senses, using mechanisms that may lead to overcomplexity, so it is ideal to construct manipulated forms while preventing anxiety and discomfort.
Deconstructivism invades the architecture design thinking as it attacks logic which is like a virus that dismantles structures to create forms that ignores internal organisation and coherence. If this virus is not controlled correctly, it could lead to buildings that embodies disorganized complexity. According to Kenneth Frampton, a British architect, deconstructivism is described as ‘elitist and detached’. This means that deconstructivist architecture is an acceptance of global modernisation which is used to push the normal building designs beyond the barriers, however, complexity must be maintained on a level to avoid destruction.

Everyone has their own likes and dislikes, and this also applies in New Zealand architecture. Some people may like Classical or Modern architecture, and some may not.
The same goes for deconstructivism. Even though deconstructivism has a lot to offer to architecture with its innovative approach, the fact that there is a presumption that deconstructivism is an architectural style that demolishes a structure misleads people to often relate that dismantling of a structure is believed to be deconstruction right away. Also, deconstructivism forces people to challenge the values of the current New Zealand buildings, which is to utilize the stability and unity of a building structure where flaws are intrinsic because deconstructivism promotes hyper reality designs which is a complete contrast of the current buildings.

The insights regarding the disadvantages of deconstructivism towards the future of New Zealand architecture has been researched from an Architecture controversy essay in Philosophy, Architecture supplier book and Deconstructivist architecture articles. The information has been used to identify the negative inflictions of deconstructivism in terms of its impact towards New Zealand architecture and its community.

Introducing a new movement to the current architecture, especially one that focuses on creating prospective buildings will surely lead people to misunderstand the approached method due to its complex, unpredictable and chaotic characteristics.

The fact that deconstructivism highlights more than one meaning to each building can lead people to believe that it has no significance and it lacks values which causes people to feel discomfort if this movement were used for the future of New Zealand architecture. However, with the proper understanding of how deconstructivism is applied to designs, it will be easier to control the design so that it balances both innovative and functional design.


To conclude, the application of deconstructivism into the future buildings of New Zealand can cause significant impacts to its architecture in terms of design aesthetics and diversity which helps the buildings adapt to the diverse state of New Zealand. Deconstructivism is a new perspective that challenges the current designs of New Zealand buildings because it pushes the limit of every design elements in order to create prospective buildings which captures the eyes of the beholder. Disturbing the perspective of architecture results in new forms and shapes that allows New Zealand to create buildings with unpredictable, unusual and unique aesthetics while maintaining the functionality of the ideal buildings through controlled chaos. The influence of deconstructivism will allow the freedom of New Zealand architecture to be able to manipulate and fragment building designs according to the Client’s ideas. The best way to advance with deconstructivism to the future would be to accept global modernisation and have a mindset of creating futuristic building. Proper use of deconstructivism will result in an intriguing futuristic building with a respectable aesthetic sense that will revolutionise the future of New Zealand architecture.

  • https://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Deconstructivism


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