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The metaverse is still largely thought of as the Wild West and offers a chance to re-envision the built environment completely and collectively.
With no laws, gravity, permits, construction workers, or material shortages to worry about, architects are trying different things. Architects, students, and designers – take stock of these trends, as they offer radically new opportunities for those looking to make an impact in the field.
#1. Architects are re-imagining themselves as content creators.
The metaverse needs content to keep users engaged. This allows architects to think of their offerings at scale, with exponential growth across platforms. Just as environment artists do for movies, architects can create digital assets and sell them to virtual worlds or games.
Further, since geography is no longer a constraint, architects have numerous project opportunities they can deliver quicker. Those who have the skill set can even write “formulas” and create reusable designs for other creators to use in their work.
#2. Algorithms are generating ‘dream home’ and ‘skyscraper’ NFT buildings.
Architect-technologist Breanna Faye’s project, ‘Metarkitex’,uses an algorithm to generate affordable, accessible, and interactive ‘meta-buildings.’ Elsewhere, PLP Architecture – the designers of 22 Bishopsgate, London’s second-tallest building, have released 5,000 virtual skyscraper NFTs.
#3. Barrier-breaking designs are being explored.
Paris-based film director Hugo Fournier is creating environments such as the “Blueberry House” and “The Comfortable Room.” Fournier expresses metaverse interiors and exteriors as non-interactive, conceptual dreamscapes.
BIG’s Leon Rost is building VICE Media’s office in Decentraland, designed as a playground.
Meanwhile, ZHA’s Patrik Schumacher warns us: “The metaverse is not an escape, and it's not a video game.” At Art Basel Miami, his team presented “NFTism,” a virtual gallery to explore interaction and architecture in the metaverse.
#4. Virtual cities are being built.
Zaha Hadid Architects is designing a ‘virtual self-governed city. ’Inspired by the real-world Free Republic of Liberland, the ‘cyber-world’ metaverse features a city hall, a central plaza, collaborative working spaces, and galleries that sell NFTs.
#5. Virtual buildings are being financed through NFTS.
CitizenM is building a hotel in The Sandbox and selling 2,000 NFTs to finance its ‘construction’, giving NFT holders perks such as free drinks redeemable at real-life CitizenM hotels.
Learn About The Row
In July we announced the launch of The Row, a private, members-only metaverse real estate community featuring architecture designed by artists. The Row is co-developed by The Alexander Team and Everyrealm.
The Row is a limited-edition series of thirty three-dimensional, architectural landmarks designed by celebrated artists including Daniel Arsham, Misha Kahn, Andrés Reisinger, Alexis Christodoulou, Six N. Five, and Hard. Each is sold as a 1-of-1 non-fungible token (or “NFT”).
Learn more here.