Wordy Wednesdays

 On Wednesdays, we look at artist statements or design philosophy statements and discuss the best vocabulary to describe an artwork or design. Today’s selection is a luxury condominium tower by SCB, called Anaha.

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Here is the text from their About page, in italics.

SCB is an architecture, interior design, and planning firm that practices nationally from offices in Chicago and San Francisco. Since 1931, SCB has made a lasting impact on the nation’s skyline, campuses, and neighborhoods, helping our clients across the country achieve their goals, serve their constituencies, and make their mark.

Our approach is to ask questions, listen, and apply our industry-leading standards and progressive creative vision to determine the best design response for each project. For us, context is key, inventiveness is crucial, and user comfort is king.

Our diverse practice includes multi-family residential, urban planning, commercial, hospitality, retail, corporate office, higher education, laboratory, and transportation projects. Our team is nimble, creative, and efficient. Our designs are responsive, responsible, and distinctive. We’ve won awards, but we’re not willing to rest on our laurels. We’re future-oriented, continually challenging ourselves to design to a higher standard, innovate at every level, and give our clients more through our commitment to elevated design.

The page begins by giving us the details about what type of firm this is and where it’s located. Next, we learn how long they’ve been in business and the areas they build in. They talk about making a lasting impact, which means they affect the communities they build in. They also talk about helping clients to make their mark, which also means to do something that will be remembered or will make you famous or successful.

Next, they talk about their approach, which is very general, yet makes them sound exceptional. An important thing to remember about an artist statement, design statement, or about page is that they should be general. You don’t use them to talk about specific projects. They should give us the important details about an artist/firm and their approach to art or design in a broad sense. However; they should not be generic and boring. The key is to write in a general way but to include some personality in order to connect with your audience and impress them.

They use the words industry-leading standards to show that they are the best at what they do. The words progressive creative vision give us the feeling that they are great leaders with new ideas. They also use words like key, crucial, and king to emphasize the importance of their approach.

In the last paragraph, they talk about diversity and list the broad range of projects they’ve worked on. This is exactly what should be included in an artist/design statement or about page. It gives the feeling that this firm has a lot of experience without too many details. Next, they describe their team, their designs, and their mission. They use the words nimble, creative, efficient, responsive, responsible, and distinctive to show that they are fast, adaptable, unique, and able to give the client what he or she wants. These are interesting words with a lot of nuance. Do you know the difference between responsive and responsible?

Finally, they talk about the awards they’ve won and use the phrase we’re not willing to rest on our laurels. This means they won’t slow down just because they’ve won some awards; they’ll keep working hard. They close by describing themselves with words like future-oriented, a higher standard, innovate, and elevated. All of these words imply a forward or upward motion to suggest they are always improving, and they leave us with a good final impression of the firm.

What do you think of this building and the about page? Do you agree with my comments? Do you have questions about the vocabulary? Do you want to suggest a piece for me to discuss next week? Leave a comment below!

I’ve chosen 5 words or phrases for you to focus on today. They are in bold. If you don’t know them, look up the meaning, synonyms, antonyms, and other forms of these words. You can find links to Merriam-Webster dictionary sites at the bottom of this page.

To see the SCB About page or the Anaha Portfolio page, click the links below:
http://www.scb.com/about/
http://www.scb.com/project/1108-auahi-anaha/

#artglish #architecture #english #scb #anaha #wordywednesday

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Jessica

I help artists and designers with their English so they can focus on being creative and changing the world.

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