REFLECTIONS, August 1, 2009
I have always wondered if the constructing of The Petronas Twin Tower was necessary. Architecturally it is indeed a modern wonder of the world, at a time when Taiwan and India and the UAE were also planning to build the world's tallest structure. Generally the Asian countries were racing to show the industrial west which of them can built the tallest tower although their economy is merely famed as a toothpick capital of the world.
The 1990s was a period of abundance for Malaysia, thanks to a boom in property market which eventually led to a bust when all hell of the Asian capitalist world broke loose through the 1997 Fall of the Baht and the house of cards popularly known as the Tom Yam Effect.
Is the Petronas Twin Tower a symbol of sustainability and does it signify the aspiration of the poor of Malaysia? Or is it a semiotic of megalomania and grandiose the country had to suffer though ultimately; a sign and signifier of totalitarianism Asian styled?
Brings me to this question: for who/whom must architects serve?