Architecture Style Vs. Brand?
By:  Jalal Al-Gaood.

While most people think of a brand as Fashion, Food, cosmetics, cars, or even industrial products, it is unusual to think of architecture as one. In fact there are many Architects whose  designs stands on the border line of being an architectural styles or  Trendy brand; Zaha Hadid, Richard Meier , Helmet Juhn to name a few.

Each brand has a style that is composed of forms, materials and function. These three elements manipulated by the designer to reflect a specific quality, create a certain image and perform a unique function.

The product then engages the customer directly through use and utility, and indirectly through media and promotion. A successful brand requires a successful utility and strong promotion.

Modern marketing demands that brands must change designs as per seasons, utility, technology, and culture. Successful brands embody the spirit of their time.

How then can Architecture be a brand, when it does not change for a long time, probably for hundreds of years?

This is a challenge that must be faced by many world renown architects.  They must address the inherited values that are embodied in architecture, while meeting the demand of aggressive mass media and strong marketing.

Architects today are hired for their architectural Style; their buildings became a brand that cities around the world must have in order for the cities achieve global recognition. These buildings are products that add value to the city and urban fabric.

Buildings designed by superstars are attractions by themselves. We have finally reached a market demand for buildings for building sake; they are more like large urban statues visited for their inherited design values, while their function is reduced to incidental.

This is remarkable, never in the history of humanity have we experienced that (maybe accept for  very few religious monuments), it is fashionable architecture that must be built into the cities that seek recognition.

This is no different than a shopping mall having to attract certain brands in order to achieve a certain position that serves a specific consumer base.

KENZO, ARMANI and U.S. Polo Assoc. all serve different customers.

I say in our post industrial cities, yes it can!

Let us hear your comments.

Zaha Hadid


Richard Meier


Helmet Juhn

U.S. Polo Assoc.