Architect Santiago Calatrava Term Paper

Pages: 5 (1345 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 9  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Architecture

As the event was one of universal appeal, Calatrava took special care to clearly bring out all his innovative ideas in the structure. With its double arches and structural rigidity, lightness of form stressed by the steel and concrete support, the resulting bridge won him international acclaim and cemented his position among the leading architects of the world.

These ideas however, were not fully realized nor were their potential inspiration to the world of architecture assessed until the completion of the Campo Volantin Footbridge in 1997. After this point, Calatrava's genius spread to nations across the continent, and over in N. America too. His other projects included the BCE Place Mall in Toronto, Canada; the Oriente Railway Station in Lisbon, commissioned for Expo '98; Lyon Airport; the Swissbau Concrete Pavilion in Basel. Calatrava's unmistakable style is immediately apparent in all his structures. (See App. 5-8)

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As with all art forms, Calatrava's work is designed to express the sentiment, culture, opinions and values of his clients, their countries and his personal ideology. In the example of Stadelhofen Station, we find that the city's civic layout is closely related to the cultural inclination of its people, the Swiss. The combinations of nature and mathematical technicality, free form and rigid discipline, and the theme of constant motion revolving round a stationary point - which is what a train station symbolizes - are all clearly brought out in Calatrava's building. The architect himself said, "This large-scale attack on the urban landscape is characterized by the organization and repetition on the part of the constructive element."

Term Paper on Architect Santiago Calatrava. It Has Assignment

Calatrava's Spanish designs incorporate the cultural opinions of the creator and his country, yet maintain the rich diversity enjoyed by Spain's various regions. In the Campo Volantin Footbridge, one finds the truest elements of Calatrava's style, as the expression involved is more direct and spontaneous; there is no trace of imposition of this local style on any of his foreign works, yet one can discern traces of Spain and the architect's personal touch in all his creations. Philip Jodido sums it up best when he says, "As in many other designs by Santiago Calatrava, an apparent disequilibrium or rather a sense of frozen movement is heightened by the lightness of the structure." (Gibson, 2000)

Santiago Calatrava's importance to the world of architecture is enormous. His flamboyance and style are emulated across the globe. Many critics and architects acknowledge the extensive influence his work has had on fledgling and established artists. The disdain that Calatrava has shown for accepted form has inspired his contemporaries to follow suit in creating a new wave of architecture that does not border on chaos or disparity, but rather concentrates on uniting the artistic aspects of architecture and intellectual witticism with the technical rigidity offered by engineering. The concepts of open air structures, structural disequilibrium; unification of extremes in nature and construction, and sophisticated innovation that can hold its own in a rapidly progressing world make this architect's contribution to modern architecture priceless.

Calatrava's work is of special interest to the student of architecture because of its universal nature. The ideas are all original, positive and presented clearly in the works, appealing to every culture, a fact proven by the structures he has built the world over. Yet each building and bridge tells us something about its creator, his culture, his approach to architecture and his view of modern construction and where it is heading.


Matthews, Kevin. Great, Santiago Calatrava. 2003.

Architect Week, Calatrava Recognized. 2000.

Gibson, Frederick Clifford. Calatrava Resources, 2000.

App. 5 Toronto Skyscraper

App. 6 Berlin

App. 7 Lyon


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How to Cite "Architect Santiago Calatrava" Term Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Architect Santiago Calatrava.  (2003, October 6).  Retrieved March 1, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Architect Santiago Calatrava."  6 October 2003.  Web.  1 March 2021. <>.

Chicago Style

"Architect Santiago Calatrava."  October 6, 2003.  Accessed March 1, 2021.