Friday, March 7, 2008

Architecture for Real

The Potala Palace. How did we not study this thing in Architecture school, and how I have I maybe only seen three pictures of it before arriving to Lhasa? It is truly a great wonder of the world. Apparently, it is the one building Frank Lloyd Wright had a picture of that wasn’t his own. Situated on the highest hill in Lhasa, it has maybe a couple of thousand of rooms and used to serve as the seat of the government and residences of the Dalai Lamas. It is still a very spiritual place and one of the most significant to Tibetan Buddhists. If I could imagine the grandest palace, it would probably look like this. You just have to see the pictures. The crazy Olympic Buildings in Beijing have nothing on this. And this building has lasted 5-10, centuries, and is still as magnificent as ever. Will the CCTV tower last more than 50 years? Will the Birdsnest last more than 5 years? The Potala Palace is truly image based architecture, and much more.

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