120+ Top Architecture Quotes About Inspirational Design

Are you looking for some inspirational and motivational quotes on architecture?

If so, you’re in the right place. We’ve collected our favourite quotes about architecture and building design, and divided them into sections so you can easily find the type of quote you’re looking for.

Scroll through the table of contents and jump to the set of quotes you’re most interested in, or simply browse the complete collection.

What impact does modern architecture have?

​Before we dive into our selection of quotes about architecture, it’s worth noting the impact that modern architecture, and architecture in general has had on society. 

  1. Functional design: Modern architecture emphasises functionality and efficiency in design, which has influenced the design of everything from office buildings to homes. This has helped to make buildings more practical and accessible to a wider range of people.
  2. Innovation: Modern architecture is often associated with bold, innovative designs that challenge traditional ideas about what buildings should look like. This has inspired other fields, such as art and fashion, to experiment with new forms and materials.
  3. Environmental awareness: Modern architecture has been at the forefront of efforts to design buildings that are sustainable and environmentally friendly. This has led to the development of new materials and techniques that reduce energy consumption and minimize waste.
  4. Cultural identity: Modern architecture has also had an impact on cultural identity, as architects have sought to create buildings that reflect the values and aspirations of different societies. This has resulted in a diverse range of styles and approaches that reflect the unique cultural heritage of different regions and communities.

Good design of buildings, which take their surroundings and environment into consideration has huge impact on people and the way we live. This collection of design quotes aims to reflect the thought, innovation and creativity in architectural design and allows us all to reflect on the impact of the buildings in which we spend our time.

Top Architecture Quotes for Everyone Who Loves Design!

Famous Architect Quotes

Here are some quotes about architecture from well-known architects which have importance in society, or have been widely quoted over time.

  1. “Form follows function” – Louis Sullivan
  2. “Architecture is the learned game, correct and magnificent, of forms assembled in the light” – Le Corbusier
  3. “A building is not just a place to be but a way to be” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  4. “Architecture is the art of how to waste space” – Philip Johnson
  5. “Architecture is a visual art, and the buildings speak for themselves” – Julia Morgan
  6. “The mother art is architecture. Without an architecture of our own we have no soul of our own civilization” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  7. “Architecture is the will of an epoch translated into space” – Mies van der Rohe
  8. “Architecture is the thoughtful making of space” – Louis Kahn

Zaha Hadid Quotes

The renowned architect and designer, Dame Zaha Hadid was well known for her ground breaking and innovative designs. Here are some of her most famous quotes about architecture.

  1. “Architecture is really about well-being. I think that people want to feel good in a space. On the one hand, it’s about shelter, but it’s also about pleasure.”
  2. “There are 360 degrees, so why stick to one?”
  3. “I am interested in architecture that moves, that grows, that changes, that evolves. That has life in it.”
  4. “I don’t believe in the existence of art that is not social.”
  5. “There is no such thing as a single vision for a city. There are as many visions as there are people.”
  6. “It’s not the buildings, it’s the spaces between the buildings that are important.”
  7. “I really believe in the idea of the future.”
  8. “The beauty of the landscape, where sand, water, reeds, birds, buildings, and people all somehow flowed together into a singular, harmonious composition, was like a dream.”
  9. “My work is not about form follows function, but form follows beauty or, even better, form follows feminine.”
  10. “I like the idea of architecture being a form of communication.”

Frank Gehry Quotes

Frank Gehry  is a Canadian-American architect known for his innovative and unconventional designs. He is considered one of the most important and influential architects of the 20th and 21st centuries, and has received numerous awards and honors for his work. Some of his most famous buildings include the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao in Spain, the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, and the Foundation Louis Vuitton in Paris.

Here are some of his most famous quotes:

  1. “Architecture should speak of its time and place, but yearn for timelessness.”
  2. “The creative process is not like a situation where you get struck by a single lightning bolt. You have ongoing discoveries, and there’s ongoing creative revelations. Yes, it’s really helpful to be marching toward a specific destination, but, along the way, you must allow yourself room for your ideas to blossom, take root, and grow.”
  3. “Architecture is a small piece of this human equation, but for those of us who practice it, we believe in its potential to make a difference, to enlighten and to enrich the human experience, to penetrate the barriers of misunderstanding and provide a beautiful context for life’s drama.”
  4. “I approach each project with a new insecurity, almost like the first project I ever did. And I get the sweats. I go in and start working, I’m not sure where I’m going. If I knew where I was going I wouldn’t do it.”
  5. “I don’t know why people hire architects and then tell them what to do.”
  6. “I’m interested in trying to explore what I think is the truth at a given time in my life. And part of the process of being honest is – in my mind – talking about the idea that you’re watching yourself.”
  7. “The best compliment you can give an architect is that his building works.”
  8. “Architecture should be a source of inspiration for people.”
  9. “I don’t know how you can describe your own work. It’s like asking a novelist, ‘What do you think of your book?’ I can’t answer that.”
  10. “I think there is a great sense of isolation in the profession and a sense that architecture is a lonely thing.”

Quotes from Architects

​This list contains more quotes from architects across the centuries and from around the world, which reflect the medium of designing buildings, and the philosophy around its complexities.

  1. “Each project is a new discovery and demands a new architecture.” – Jean Nouvel
  2.  “Architecture is not about space but about time” – Vito Acconci
  3. “Architecture is the triumph of human imagination over materials, methods, and men, to put man into possession of his own Earth” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  4. “Architecture is the art which so disposes and adorns the edifices raised by men, that the sight of them may contribute to his mental health, power, and pleasure” – John Ruskin
  5. “A great building must begin with the unmeasurable, must go through measurable means when it is being designed, and in the end must be unmeasurable” – Louis Kahn
  6. “The dialogue between client and architect is about as intimate as any conversation you can have, because when you’re talking about building a house, you’re talking about dreams” – Robert A. M. Stern
  7. “The mother art is architecture. Without an architecture of our own we have no soul of our own civilization” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  8. “The ultimate goal of the architect…is to create a paradise. Every building, every product of architecture…should be a fruit of our endeavour to build an earthly paradise for people” – Alvar Aalto
  9. “The architect must be a prophet… a prophet in the true sense of the term… if he can’t see at least ten years ahead don’t call him an architect” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  10. “Form ever follows function” – Louis Sullivan

Quotes About Architects

Many different things have been said about famous architects, so we’ve collected a set of sayings and quotes about architects, said by others from within the industry.

  1. “He who draws noble delights from sentiments of poetry is a true poet, though he has never written a line in all his life.” – George Sand on Gustave Eiffel
  2. “Mies van der Rohe’s architecture reflects the rigor and discipline of his Germanic background.” – I.M. Pei
  3. “Zaha Hadid’s buildings seem to defy the laws of gravity and logic.” – Paul Goldberger
  4. “Louis Kahn’s buildings are modern yet timeless, simple yet complex.” – Renzo Piano
  5. “Le Corbusier was the greatest architect of the twentieth century.” – Richard Rogers

Funny Architecture Quotes

Not everyone appreciates the complex process of architectural design, and many consider some buildings to be bad architecture even. These funny architecture quotes reflect the views of others within the design and construction process, who don’t always value an architects worth.

  1. “The trouble with architects is they always have their heads in the clouds. If they spent more time with their feet on the ground, they could design better buildings.” – Philip Johnson
  2. “An architect’s most useful tools are an eraser at the drafting board, and a wrecking bar at the site.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  3. “I’m an architect, not a decorator.” – Michael Graves
  4. “The difference between a good architect and a great architect is that the great architect knows where to put the holes in the Swiss cheese.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  5. “The mother art is architecture. Everything else we do is somehow connected to it.” – Michael Graves
  6. “An architect’s dream is an engineer’s nightmare.” – Peter Rice
  7. “An architect is the drawer of dreams.” – Grace McGarvie
  8. “I’d like to live in a building designed by an architect who believes in ghosts.” – Shigeru Ban
  9. “The design process is like cleaning the toilet with a toothbrush.” – Michael Graves
  10. “To be an architect, you have to be a scientist, an artist, a politician, and a builder. It’s like being a quadruple threat.” – Peter Eisenman

Architecture Slogans

Do you run an architecture business or plan to begin one? If so, then you’ll need a slogan or tagline to go with it, one that reflects the ethos of your company and brand. Here are a few examples an architect’s task that would make great taglines for your project.

  1. “Designing spaces for a better world.”
  2. “Building for a sustainable future.”
  3. “Creating environments that inspire.”
  4. “Designing spaces that tell your story.”
  5. “Transforming your vision into a reality.”
  6. “Building with purpose, designing with heart.”
  7. “Innovative design for modern living.”
  8. “Architecture that transcends time.”
  9. “Designing buildings that enrich lives.”
  10. “Crafting unique spaces that connect people.”

Quotes about Old Buildings

Whilst many architecture projects draw lots of criticism from within the industry and beyond, some old buildings are able to stand the test of time. Here are some quotes about buildings, their longevity and their impact on society.

  1. “Architecture is a language, a powerful one. We speak it every time we design a building.” – Richard Rogers
  2. Old buildings are not ours. They belong, partly to those who built them, and partly to the generations of mankind who are to follow us.” – Ruskin Bon
  3. “Old buildings are like a book. You can open it and read the history of a place, of a people, of a civilization.” – Richard Henriquez
  4. “A great building must begin with the unmeasurable, must go through measurable means when it is being designed, and in the end must be unmeasurable.” – Louis Kahn
  5. “Old buildings may be crumbling, but their beauty and character only grow more striking with time.” – Isabel Vincent

Proud Architecture Quotes

Good buildings deserve a proud architecture quote, so here are a few examples that show the depth of feeling towards great design.

  1. “Architecture is the reaching out for the truth.” – Louis Kahn
  2. “Architecture is a visual art, and the buildings speak for themselves.” – Julia Morgan
  3. “Every great architect is – necessarily – a great poet. He must be a great original interpreter of his time, his day, his age.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  4. “Architecture is not a mere utility, but it has always been a symbol of power and culture, and it is also a field in which one can reflect on society and its evolution.” – Renzo Piano
  5. “Architecture is not about space but about time. It is not about how many square meters you have, but about how you use them.” – Alejandro Aravena

Inspirational Architecture Quotes

Good design is inspirational and should be beautiful to live with, live in and be part of. These design quotes reflect the art of architecture and should motivate and inspire you to appreciated its qualities.

  1. “Architecture is not based on concrete and steel and the elements of the soil. It’s based on wonder.” – Daniel Libeskind
  2. “As an architect, you design for the present with an awareness of the past, for a future which is essentially unknown.” – Norman Foster
  3. “The great opportunity of contemporary architecture is that anything is possible now.” – Rem Koolhaas
  4. “To provide meaningful architecture is not to parody history but to articulate it.” – Daniel Libeskind’
  5. “The architecture we remember is that which never consoles or sanctifies, but challenges and surprises us.” – Peter Eisenman
  6. “Architecture is not an inspirational business, it’s a rational procedure to do sensible and hopefully beautiful things; that’s all.” I.M Pei 

Short Architecture Quotes

If you need a short and snappy quote about architecture, look no further. We’ve collated a list of our favourite quotes that won’t take up much of your time.

  1. “Less is more” – Ludwig Mies van der Rohe
  2. “God is in the details” – Ludwig Mies van der Rohe
  3. “Architecture is the art of how to waste space.” – Philip Johnson
  4. “To create, one must first question everything.” – Eileen Gray
  5. “The best thing about architecture is that it’s everywhere.” – Philip Johnson
  6. “Architecture is a visual art, and the buildings speak for themselves.” – Julia Morgan
  7. “Architecture is the stage on which we live.” – Sean Godsell
  8. “Architecture is frozen music.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
  9. “An idea is salvation by imagination.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  10. “Architecture is the art of how to waste space.” – Philip Johnson

Beautiful Architecture Quotes

There is beauty in great design, and beautiful buildings can shape a community and its history. In these quotes we showcase the impact of designs on human beings throughout time.

  1. “One of the great beauties of architecture is that each time, it is like life starting all over again.” – Renzo Piano
  2.  “I don’t believe architecture has to speak too much. It should remain silent and let nature in the guise of sunlight and wind.” – Tadao Ando 
  3. “Form follows beauty.” – Oscar Niemeyer
  4. “Architecture frames human existence and experience; it orchestrates light and space, movement and mood.” – Juhani Pallasmaa
  5. “Any work of architecture that does not express serenity is a mistake.” – Luis Barragán

Landscape Architecture Quotes

Landscape architects work to create functional and beautiful environments that balance human needs with the natural world. They may design site plans, plantings, walkways, and water features, as well as consider factors such as sustainability, accessibility, and the social and cultural context of the site. Here are a few quotes that represent this discipline.

  1. The art of landscape architecture design is not simply the arrangement of objects on the ground but the thoughtful and deliberate orchestration of all the elements and spaces that make up a landscape.” – Laurie Olin
  2. “Landscape design is an optimistic profession. We shape the landscape and in turn, it shapes us.” – Mary Reynolds
  3. “Landscape architecture is the art of creating places for people to live, work, play, learn, and heal.” – American Society of Landscape Architects
  4. “Landscape architecture is the art of arranging land and water to meet the practical needs and aspirations of humanity.” – Ian McHarg
  5. “The best landscapes reveal themselves gradually, like the best love affairs.” – Piet Oudolf

If you love these, you might also like this selection of Nature Quotes.

Architecture Captions for Instagram

If you’re looking for architect quotes suitable for an Instagram caption, check out this list. Why not add then to a graphic for Instagram or simply copy and paste them to use in your caption. Don’t forget to attribute them to their author.

  1. “Architecture is not just about creating spaces, it’s about creating experiences.”
  2. “The essence of architecture is space, light, and order.” – Le Corbusier
  3. “Architecture is the triumph of human imagination over materials, methods, and men, to put man into possession of his own Earth.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  4. “Great architecture is not a matter of size, but of connection with people and its surroundings.”
  5. “Architecture should speak of its time and place, but yearn for timelessness.” – Frank Gehry
  6. “Architecture is not just a profession, it’s a calling.”
  7. “Good architecture is like a good therapy session, a good marriage, a good poem – gently and almost invisibly allowing you to be you, as flawed and as beautiful as you are.” – Robert Sullivan
  8. “Architecture is the reaching out for the truth.” – Louis Kahn
  9. “Architecture is a visual art, and the buildings speak for themselves.” – Julia Morgan
  10. “Architecture is not about form, it’s about life.” – Bjarke Ingels

Architecture Quotes for Portfolios

A good architecture quote can add depth and meaning to a portfolio by capturing the essence and importance of architecture. It can showcase the architect’s design philosophy, aesthetic values, and vision for the built environment. If you need a quick saying for a project portfolio, we’ve collected a few together as examples to help you along your way.

  1. “Architecture is the thoughtful making of space.” – Louis Kahn
  2. “Less is more.” – Ludwig Mies van der Rohe
  3. “Form follows function.” – Louis Sullivan
  4. “The mother art is architecture. Without an architecture of our own we have no soul of our own civilization.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  5. “The greatest art in the world is the art of storytelling.” – Frank Gehry

Ancient Architecture Quotes

Good architecture has been part of our cultures and societies for hundreds and thousands of years. These quotes represent the impact that ancient architecture has had on our civilisation.

  1. “As a building is man’s bodily covering, so architecture is the enclosing envelope of all the arts.” – Vitruvius
  2. “Order and arrangement, symmetry and definiteness, are the qualities that give value to architecture.” – Vitruvius
  3. “The design of a building must first and foremost be functional; it must not only look good but also work well.” – Marcus Vitruvius Pollio
  4. “Architecture aims at Eternity.” – Christopher Wren
  5. “A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
  6. “Architecture is a visual art and the buildings speak for themselves.” – Julia Morgan
  7. “The noblest pleasure is the joy of understanding.” – Leonardo da Vinci
  8. “Architecture is the reaching out for the truth.” – Louis Kahn
  9. “The first requisite of architecture is that it should be appropriate and to that end it must not only satisfy the eye but also be strong, sound and so forth.” – Marcus Vitruvius Pollio

More Quotes about Architectural Design

And finally, because we had so many amazing architecture quotes, we’ve finished the article with a small set of further architecture quotes for your inspiration and enjoyment.

  1. “Architecture is not about form, it’s about life. And I think that is what ultimately drives architecture.” – David Chipperfield
  2. “Architecture is inhabited sculpture.” – Constantin Brancusi
  3. “The details are not the details. They make the design.” – Charles Eames
  4. “Architecture is the bony structure of civilization.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  5. “Originality consists of returning to the origin.” – Antoni Gaudi

We hope you’ve enjoyed this collection of quotes about architecture and design and they help inspire you in your projects.

Jen Stanbrook
Jen Stanbrook

Jen is an award winning digital publisher and has been creating interiors and home decor content for over 10 years.
She has an insatiable love of home interiors, has worked with hundreds of brands, and currently supports many bloggers within the creative industries to share their expertise through writing.
She spends most of her time in her little garden office pod, has 2 daughters and 2 (fighting) cats.

Find me on: Web | Twitter | Instagram

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