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About & Contact


City tourism, exploring and experiencing modern architecture, is what this website is about. Lesser known European destinations with modern architecture worth a trip or detour. I prefer lesser known destinations rather than ticking the 'seen'-box of spectacular architecture. Weather permitting, I go to architourism destinations on my motorbike.  

My preference for selecting and presenting architecture in destinations is that the architecture is (partly) accessible, it offers more than the gaze. There is no practical tourism information on this site; architourists are mostly mature visitors who can find their own way. 

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Peter Nientied (Rotterdam) manages this website. It is a not-for-profit undertaking. I am partly retired from academic and advisory work on urban questions, tourism and innovation studies. I do not have any formal training in architecture and I am not very interested in the design and technical side of architecture. More interesting is the relationship between built environment and people, how new architecture is situated, what makes people love or dislike a space and its architecture, how  they experience architecture and how places and spaces affect behaviour.  

My other photo website is

Photos on this site

On the photography: photo's copyright, except when external (open) sources are mentioned. A limitation of photography is of course that pictures stress the visual while enjoying modern architecture is about an experience with all senses. Alas, it is difficult to add smell, sound and sense of direction or sense of place and space to photos. 

I apply as much as possible the What You See Is What You Get principle. It is not very difficult to create artistic representations of architecture or go for iconic photos, or "fetishize stylish abstraction in architecture space", as Iwan Baan calls it (see reference below), but the stand is that WYSIWYG-photos better inform city tourists. Documentation rather than art photography; no black-and-white photos because people see in colour, and no drone photos because people cannot fly. Photo adjustments of photos are typically limited to light/contrast and colour corrections. 

Architects' offices have advanced skills to create alluring images of their designs. How architecture looks in reality can be quite different compared to the architect's presentation. For example, on Archdaily a presentation can be found of the Science Park in Granada - when it is completely empty. Compare these pictures of the architect (click here) with what the visitor encounters in the real-world (see the pictures on this site). 


Some references:

  • Virginia Duran, is an architect and city explorer and offers, for free, a range of well studied architecture guides of main architecture cities around the world. Her (affordable) book 'London Architecture Guide' is being revised, and a must-have for visitors.  

  • A few interesting TED-talks on architecture and people. Stephan Behling (Foster & Partners) gave an interesting TEDx Talk about architecture and the science of the senses,  click here.  In another TED talk, Thomas Heatherwick uses phrases like 'an epedemic of boringness', 'MacBuildings' to depict modern cities. His case is about radically human buildings. Click here. "Architecture is interplay between life and form." says Jan Gehl in his talk about human scale and 20th Century history of urban planning. Click here.  

  • On the occasion of the retrospective 'Iwan Baan: moments in architecture' in the Vitra Design Museum, a 600 page catelogue was published. Iwan Baan's photo's are not the stylish and smooth architecture images like many architecture photogrphers and offices present, but more documentary and human. And most of the book in not about architecture - it is about (social) city life, city environments and their inhabitants and visitors.  Recommended.

  • (more to come)


Get in touch through Instagram             

or send a mail to:  nientied1 [at] chello [dot] nl 

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