Bullet Points for Writing Your Essay
You are asked to expand your Proposal into a 2,500 word Essay. Your Proposal was selected because it already reflects an especially good understanding of this year’s topic and Question. Do not discard your original thoughts and ideas, but now make an in-depth argument that supports and enhances your thesis.
- First, re-visit the two buildings you have selected. Get to know them better. Get to know the people who use and work in the buildings better. Get to know the community in which they are located better. Continue to learn how the buildings were conceived and built and what makes them special. Ask questions.
- Before you begin to write the 2,500 word Essay, it is important that you carefully consider any reviewer comments about your Proposal. These comments are meant to help you write a winning essay. Please look for the reviewer comments in your Author Portfolio (NOTE: Not all reviewers will provide comments).
- An essay is different from a Proposal. Your Proposal was selected because the Committee believed that it was a good outline that had the potential to be developed into an even better essay on the social art of architecture. You want to do much more than simply re-state your argument. Explore and expand your ideas, the reasons for them, and the conclusions you have reached because of them. Substantiate these thoughts with specific examples.
- YOU MUST INCLUDE an opening paragraph of no more than 50 words that describes specifically the rationale for teaming up with your specific partner.
- Ask a friend to read your essay before submitting it. Better yet, show it to two friends: one, a fellow architecture student; the second, a person not familiar with the discipline or profession. Use their input to revise your draft. If you can prevail on them, ask them to read your revised draft. Ask them how your argument can be made clearer and the language more succinct – they always can be.
- We ask that you include four (4) digital photographs of images that you have personally taken to help describe the content of your essay. Two of these photos can be the images you already posted with your Proposal, but they need to be re-posted. The photographs should be no larger than 1 MB, and be in .jpeg format. No more than the four photographs will be accepted. There is space provided at the end of the submittal form to upload the images. Space is also provided to number and caption each image. Do not assume that just because you have posted the photographs that your responsibility to carefully describe in words your selected examples is reduced. To the contrary: use the illustrations to support and strengthen your writing.
Judging for the Essay Competition is on a numeric system. The members of the BERKELEY PRIZE Committee are asked to evaluate each Essay in terms of the following criteria:
- Does the Essay address the Question?
- How creative, or creatively developed, is the Essay?
- Would the Essay be clear to a broad audience?
- How does the Essay rank in terms of writing style?
- How socially significant is the Essay?
Each Essay is given a score of 1 to 5 (5 being the highest). The top approximately 5-7 (or more) scoring Essays become Finalists and will be sent to this year's Jury members.
MOST IMPORTANTLY: HAVE FUN AND GOOD LUCK!
Essays due any time before midnight, GMT, February 1, 2020
United States Post Office, Albany, California, U.S.A. This is typical of the thousands of post offices in the country that, despite the computer age, are in constant use by the local community.
Edificio de Correos y Telegrafos (Mail and Telegraph Building), Valencia, Spain. 1922. This Central Post Office building is popularly known as the “Palacio de Comunicaciones” (Palace of Communications). Miguel Angel Navarro, Architect.
San Francisco Department of Public Health Headquarters, San Francisco, U.S.A.
Beijing National Aquatics Center,
Beijing, China. The “Water Cube” at the Olympic Park. PTW Architects and the Arup Australasia engineering group, together with the China State Construction Engineering Corporation (CSCEC) and the CSCEC Shenzhen Design Institute. See: https://www.chinahighlights.com/beijing/attraction/water-cube.htm
Sunday Community Market at the Department of Motor Vehicles (DVM) Office, Oakland, California, U.S.A. This DMV is one of 180 such offices in California, all of which issue driver's licenses, identity cards, and vehicle registrations.
Temescal Branch Library,
Oakland, California, U.S.A. 1918. One of sixteen libraries in the Oakland Public Library
system. Charles W. Dickey and John J. Donovan, Architects.
Biblioteca Latino-Americana Victor Civita (Victor Civita Latin America Library), at the Latin American Memorial,
São Paulo, Brazil. Oscar Niemeyer, Architect. The Library is part of a much larger, multi-building cultural center. See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latin_America_Memorial
Mercat Central (Central Market),
Valencia, Spain. 1914-1928. Alejandro Soler March
and Francesc Guàrdia i Vial, Architects.
Oceanário de Lisboa, Lisbon, Portugal. The largest indoor aquarium in Europe. Designed by Cambridge Seven Associates led by American architect Peter Chermayeff.
Shanghai Concert Hall, Shanghai, China. Originally built in 1930, Robert Fan Wenzhao, Architect. In 2007, in recognition of its historic and cultural importance to the community, the entire hall was moved 66 meters to facilitate the construction of a new elevated highway. It has been fully conserved for a new lifetime of community use.
Tashkent, Uzbekistan. Today’s bazaar is a complex of large blue and turquoise domes constructed by the government in the Soviet era during the 1980s on the site of former markets that have been in operation for over 2000 years. See: http://uzbek-travel.com/about-uzbekistan/facts/chorsu-bazaar/
Christmas Market at the Palace of Culture and Science (PKiN),
Warsaw, Poland. Designed by Soviet architect Lev Rudnev
in what has been called the "Seven Sisters"
(Stalinist) style, the 1955 building has survived post-Communist era calls for its demolition. It “houses various public and cultural institutions such as cinemas, theaters, libraries, sports clubs, university faculties and authorities of the Polish Academy of Sciences
.” The building is slowly overcoming its history as a symbol of totalitarianism and has become a true community resource. See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palace_of_Culture_and_Science
UVA Nuevo Occidente,
Medellín, Colombia. Public and community spaces including swimming pool, dressing rooms, and recreational terrace; a ballroom, toy library, classroom workshop, cinema auditorium and children's playground; multiple classrooms, administrative offices, commercial premises and viewing terrace and, in addition to a multi-purpose Coliseum, synthetic court and urban gym. See also: https://www.lafargeholcimfoundation.org/media/news/projects/a-new-icon-of-community-empowerment-in-medellin-uva-de-la-imagin
(Photo: Benard Acellam)
Cultural Development Center of Moravia (CDCM),
Medellín, Colombia. Rogelio Salmona, Architect. Designed with an auditorium for 350 people; thirty private and soundproof cubicles for practice; three multiple classrooms for meetings, rehearsals, training or practice; galleries; and a number of playgrounds for various activities. See also: http://stealth.ultd.net/?p=1318
(Photo: Benard Acellam)