An exhibition of the top fifteen Architectural Design submissions for the Bamiyan Cultural Centre was launched by the UNESCO Office in Afghanistan, early this May. My entry was one of 15 selected from among the 1070 submitted entries to grace the walls of the exhibition hall at the historic Garden of Babur.
It was quite a personal feat for me as I was competing against the most talented architects from across the world. I don’t always participate in competitions - due to my hectic schedule of lecturing and at the same time, running my own architectural practice – but I do strongly encourage architectural students to do so as the benefits of participating will outweigh the time spent.
Design competitions provide a myriad of opportunities to show case your talents. They provide a platform for you to explore your design ideas and sharpen your conceptual thinking. Obviously, not everyone who participates will win. However, even if you don’t receive any of the prizes up for grabs, you can still benefit from the opportunity to challenge yourself. I am sure you will somehow learn new things or develop new skills. Always remember, participating in competition is not time wasted; it is time spent learning and trying out new strategies.
And if you don’t win this time, fret not, just participate again. The more you participate, the better you get!