Architect Lebbeus Woods recently posted an essay on his blog discussing the effect banal rectangular buildings (‘dumb boxes’) have had on the practice of architecture and cultural thinking in general.

Architects are today routinely indoctrinated against the dumb box. Even advertising urges us to “think outside the box.” Why? Because it is thought we all hate the box for being too dumb, too boring, and we want to escape it. If we do escape, by buying the advertised product, we usually find ourselves inside another dumb box populated by boring people just like us. It is clearly possible to live an extraordinary life inside a dumb box. Question: is it possible to lead an extraordinary life in anything other than a dumb box?

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