As I child I always found the built environment particularly beguiling. Growing up in large cities I took for granted that everyone stood at the base of a skyscraper, craned their head back and was lost in complete and utter awe. The beauty I saw in the world around me was always built. Sure, trees, flowers, and such are all pretty, but none have ever lead my heart to race like a perfectly arched chair leg or excellently proportioned dentil molding. It never occurred to me that many of my young counterparts never took notice of a delicate cornice detail or perfect, subtle curve of a roofline. As I grew and traveled, I came to realize that a well-executed cityscape elicits in me a similar emotional experience as a majestic mountain scene does for most.
To so many, buildings, interiors, furniture; all these are just functional, utilitarian ‘things’ we install into a natural environment. But to those of us with a predilection for design, these ‘things’ seem completely natural, these ‘things’ embody all that is beautiful in the world. And while an appreciation of the built environment is not innate in everyone, with a little education and appreciation, most everyone can gain some level of enjoyment from a walk through an average city center. And what a wonderful addition to our daily routine? Most of us cannot stand at the edge of the Grand Canyon any day of the week, however, we can stand in the lobby of our own office building and sneak a quick glance at a greek key carving and appreciate its timeless rhythm and flow. We can stand at a distance and seek out the relationship of one roofline to the next. We can find small moments that enrich our often mundane existence.