Register: APR/29/2018, Submit: APR/30/2018, Eligibility: Architects, students, engineers, designers, artists, philosophers; individually, (interdisciplinary) teams up to 3 members, Fee: Indian nationals 1500 INR (Indian rupee), foreign nationals 60 EUR (JAN/16 – MAR/31/2018); Indian nationals 1,800 INR, foreign nationals 80 EUR (APR/01 – APR/29/2018); discount for 5 teams from one architecture school/university, Awards: 1st Prize 1,00,000 INR (about 1,300 EUR), 2nd Prize 60,000 INR (about 780 EUR), 3rd Prize 40,000 INR (about 520 EUR), 10 Honorable Mentions
Carl Sandburg has accurately described language as the most indispensable tool in the life of us social animals, men. Men have traversed through ages and grown into the most superior race on Earth because of their advanced linguistic and communication skills. Human language is unique in comparison to other forms of communication, as it allows us to produce a vast range of expressions and emotions from a finite set of elements.
The timeline for the development of modern day languages spans thousands of years. Sounds have developed into words, meanings, scripts, grammar, fonts and a formal system of communication called linguistics. One organization suggests that there are about 7099 living languages in the world, but which are not evenly distributed around the world geography. Only 23 languages account for more than half the world’s population. Roughly a third of languages are now endangered, often with less than 1,000 speakers remaining.
Language is much more than just a means of communication. It is also an inseparable part of our culture. In fact, language allows culture to exist. Language allows us to pass on ideas, knowledge, and even attitudes on to the next generation. Language allows culture to develop by freeing people to move beyond their immediate experiences”. Language is intrinsic to the expression of culture. As a means of communicating values, beliefs and customs, it has an important social function and fosters feelings of group identity and solidarity. It is the means by which culture and its traditions and shared values may be conveyed and preserved.
Languages are the most important part of a particular cultural heritage. As one culture dies and another grows, the same happens to their languages. Language is a relic that needs preservation as other inventions and objects of importance. It is an intangible resource that can also unlock some of the lost secrets and even civilizations that existed on the face of the earth.
Language has largely been neglected as a museological domain worldwide, apart from some certain sections in major museums devoted to individual linguistic contributions. The aim of the competition is to design an iconic museum of language in the heart of London that will deconstruct the science of linguistics into various aspects of speech, script and sense. The proposal must not only become an archive for the past and present world languages but also serve as a learning center that works to develop languages and future communication systems.
Preservation of language through the creation of a dedicated language bank that exhibits different world languages in an interactive manner.
When a language dies out, future generations lose a vital part of the culture that is necessary to completely understand it. This makes language a vulnerable aspect of cultural heritage, and it becomes especially important to preserve it. The participants must strive to create a ‘world of languages’ in the museum that will put all the past, present and new languages on one platform. The museum should create adedicated archive and exhibition space that will focus on classification of various languages with some comment about their status. The exhibition space should be immersive and interactive in experience so that the visitors feel the essence of a particular lingual form rather than a robotic brush through. The museum experience should be able to reflect on the culture where a particular language originated for the visitors to completely understand the vitality of that language.
Creation of a dedicated learning platform that will allow a detailed research and innovation in terms of the past, present and future world languages.
The museum should also create a learning center that will decode and provide a detailed analysis of a particular linguistic system. The learning center should study various aspects of a language like speech (phonetics, pronunciations, accents etc.), writing (scripts, fonts etc.) and sense (vocabulary, grammar and structure). The learning center will be open-ended where everyone could contribute and study. The learning center should have designed spaces that will allow discussions, debates and presentations among people with linguistic interest. The learning center should also allow for the development of new communication systems and languages, especially for people with speech or hearing disabilities, thus contributing to the society in a fulfilling way.
Create a poetic response for a language museum through the means of architecture.
Architecture has the power to give meaning to a space. The physical manifestation of the language museum should be innovative and invoke an immediate powerful emotional response among the visitors. The participants must try to articulate the mass and volume of the shell with various aspects of design like rhythm, balance, scale and proportionality like a language is articulated to create the best piece of literature. The museum should create a multi-sensory experience for the visitors for them to understand the beauty of linguistics. The museum should be creative and dynamic so that it leaves a long-lasting impression on the visitors. The spaces must have different experiences which should be bound into an aesthetic and visually appealing museum shell.
Creating an icon that will have enrich and contribute to the culture of the city of London.
London is a cosmopolitan city and the most diverse place in the world at the present. The museum should become an icon and an important landmark for the city where people from different cultures could converge and celebrate the beauty of diversity. The museum should respect the context and enrich the public and community life in and around the complex in a meaningful and an environment friendly manner. The museum should be able to attract maximum visitors and become a significant socio-economic zone in the city by adding a wide range of soft functions like plazas and outdoor performance areas.
SITE & PROGRAM
The site is situated along the North Woolwich pier and is flanked by the Pier road (A117) on two sides. The site is located on the existing site of North Woolwich Old Station museum that closed in 2008. The participants shall consider the site as blank and ignore the existing buildings.
Google Earth: Latitude: 51°29’56”N Longitude: 0°03’45”E, Site Area: 6400 m2, Max built area: 12000 m2
Max height allowed: No maximum limitabove ground & 6 meter below ground.
Following are the programmatical features that are to be provided in the proposal for the museum. The size, proportions and number of facilities are left to the participant’s discretion and imagination. Competitors are encouraged to design and propose any kind of innovative and intuitive program or function in addition and extension to the following list of functions, but with an argumentized necessity. Keeping in mind the paucity of space in today’s times, explore the possibility of designing multifunctional and dynamic spaces.
- Museum: Exhibition halls and galleries (dedicated to all the aspects of a language-speech, scriptand sense), Demonstration kiosks, Archives section, Information Center etc.
- Learning center: Data Collection Center, Media room, Discussion rooms, Lecture halls, Seminar rooms, Digital library etc.
- Miscellaneous: Reception space, Administrative offices, Researchers’ rooms, Conference halls, Multipurpose hall, Reference library, Restrooms Service rooms etc.
- Social and leisure: Cafes, Restaurants, Open Air theatre, Retail and tuck shops, Landscaping zonesand various types of gathering spaces.