Pixel Museum Teaser

 

Some of these images remind me of Frank Lloyd Wright textile work.

 

The Pixel Art Museum will be presented very soon on this blog, but until then I would like to share something interesting.  While working on the  museum renders I discovered that I was able to save the image before it had actually finished rendering which causes the images to turn out very blurry and abstract.  They are basically half baked.  As a conceptual tie-in to what this museum is supposed to house I thought it was appropriate to share these images which have a beautiful rhythmic pixel quality to them.  They also leave plenty to the imagination in terms of what this thing will actually look like. The best way to experience these images is to click on them, zoom in real far, and  journey around the pixelated landscape.  Enjoy!

(All images by Argitect)
Advertisements
Posted in Architecture, Fine Art | Leave a comment

Happy One Year!

 

The New Palace of Congress at the E.U.R. in Rome by Fuksas is a perfect distillation of the Rationalist and Spiritualist battle in architecture.

 

This is my one year anniversary of starting my architecture blog.  It has been a blast getting my ideas out into the open, and I hope you have enjoyed them.  In celebration of one year, and about 35,00o words, I am posting some highlights from the past year.  These are a few of my favorite quotes from the blog.  Enjoy!

-An architect is a hypocrite towards his own desires. No other professional works in a field that so boldly skirts the line between the rational and the spiritual.

-Architecture must be beautiful and have a conveniently placed toilet!

-Hide the truth to heighten the truth.

-The International Style:  What they attempted to do here was destroy the boundaries of spoken language and nationalism and unite all countries towards a worldwide community: A Reverse Diaspora, which is contrary to the Tower of Babel: One building pulls us apart, and a new philosophy brings us together!  But alas, just like any utopian aspiration, (like Communism for example), other complex forces in the world (like greed {nay}, and free will {yay}) diminish lofty overarching visions and keep the world in a constant state of paradox: order and chaos….

-The modern and the ancient collided in Le Corbusier’s conception of a new Modern Architecture.

-Mies Van Der Rohe had do to so much to create Less. He had to hide utilities, he had to arrange program to fit in cores, he had to develop better facade technology.  He used industrialized ornamentation to articulate the parts of a building. Honesty was not his goal, but a concept of honesty.

-Walking around the Trump Tower I was depressed to find so many tourists pointing at it, and taking pictures of it, unconscious of the truly great buildings right around including, IBM, Marina Towers and the Wrigley Building. I’ve been compelled several times to go right up to the tourists and tell them they are taking pictures of the wrong buildings. For now, I will let the bully be king of the mountain. I’m confident the novelty will wear off soon.

-The question that plagues all artists, sculptors and architects in search for ideas of truth: How does one express an idea of the spiritual with physical means?

-What Mies did was assimilate the residual effects of minimalist architecture into a more subtle and sublime whole. The effects and illusions of materials were framed within order for maximum viewing of their mystical qualities.

-Glass is a material that on the surface appears to clarify the nature of a building: The more glass used, the more we understand about its program and structural diagram. However, an overabundance of glass can undermine this purpose and create major ambiguities with reflectivity.

-Farnsworth house–The architecture is nature’s frame. It is not overtly decorative in order that it does not compete with nature.  At a museum if a painting is framed in an overtly ornate gilded frame the power of the painting is attenuated. A conspicuous frame will make one forget the frame and focus on what is important; the painting!

-This is the paradox of the architect: to design within gravity to create a building that reassures its inhabitants that it will not topple and crush them, and yet to design against gravity so the inhabitants do not feel stifled by the constant force that keeps them grounded.

-The closer one comes to floating, the closer one comes to perfection!

-This tension between heaviness and lightness is what makes Frank Lloyd Wright’s facades so effective aesthetically, and psychologically. A person living in an FLLW house would simultaneously feel the stability and comfort of a grounded building, but not be overburdened by the effects of gravity.

-As Alvar Aalto’s works progressed, the duality between aesthetics and function  became clearer. In the Villa Mairea we see a logical orthogonal plan skirted with elements of pure aesthetic delight.

-On Mullet Architecture–In order to “blend” more clearly with the surrounding neighborhood, Wright played all of his fun games with architecture on the back facade of the (Winslow) house while keeping the front relatively subdued and orderly. It was strictly business in the front, while the party stayed in the back!

-A further distilled Mullet House can be seen in the second Herbert Jacobs house by Frank Lloyd Wright. This so called “Solar Hemicycle” is an arch shaped wedge that derives its shapes according to the movement of the sun. The south, and private, concave facade is all glass and the north convex facade is brutal stonework that resembles a medieval castle. Nowhere is privacy driven Mullet Architecture more clearly articulated. The duality of domestic architecture is found in the need for freedom and privacy.

-Architecture will always need to protect its inhabitants from the rain and the wind and whatever else Mother Nature decides to throw at us. Because of this I do not believe that the spiritual desire for a connection with nature will ever completely conquer the pragmatic need for protection from it.

-The demands of architecture by the people are the same as they have always been: a building that protects one from nature, but done in such a way as to not cut one off from nature. What a defiant and comforting feeling we have when witnessing a thunderstorm from behind glass!

-This is the dual nature of the architect. By our very nature we are conflicted individuals. We are unsatisfied with total logic. We are unsatisfied with the complete freedom awarded to the fine artist. We are hypocrites towards our own desires. Long live the dual natured architect!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Andy Warhol and the Deep Surface

 

Warhol-Self Portrait

 

“I am a deeply superficial person”- Andy Warhol

Andy Warhol (like Mies Van Der Rohe in architecture) is perhaps the most misunderstood and complex artist in history even though statements he made about his own work invoked a naive simplicity.  This is perhaps why he is so misunderstood. Andy Warhol did not make it easy for the people of his time.  He did not explain his work in emotional or historical terms.  He was deliberately coy and naive.  He made one think that perhaps his work was as vapid as he said it was.  But in the corner of his blank stare was faint evidence that everything about this man was mired in sarcasm and irony.  This irony was so thick it clouded the truth of what he was doing.

Andy Warhol was also hated and considered a threat because he seemingly broke the most important covenants of what made an artist: talent, originality, passion and preciousness.  By undermining these sacred truths and throwing them into question he essentially pulled the rug out from under “fine art.”  But, his work is much much more than merely iconoclastic.  It brings up several layers of dual meanings. By breaking the rules he gave artists and patrons a whole new set of topics to explore.

 

Andy Warhol-Elvis Presley

 

Warhol negated the concept of  artistic talent with this Pop Art works of the 60s.  Instead of using the paintbrush, he blew up photographs stolen from newspapers or magazines and used the silkscreen process to make prints on canvas.  These prints were then sometimes washed over with rudimentary color that was bright and intentionally not meant to evoke reality in the color scheme.  Warhol said many times that this technique could be copied by any other person and repeated with similar results. In this vein of thought he called his art gallery the Factory and actually employed other people to manufacture his screen prints.  He removed the artist from the process, or in other words, he removed the artist from the romantic belief of what an artist is.  The romantic notion of the artist is that they are tortured souls that burst forth their creations in solitude and inner torment.  Vincent Van Gogh was a perfect example of the fierce individual, spiritual, and suffering nature of the artist.  People in general believe that true art can only come from such a personal place.  Warhol made the argument that this is not always true or necessary.  Warhol treated being an artist as if it was just a way to make money,  but  he was also making an ironic point about the glorification of talent and the aggressive individuality of the romantic artist.  In hindsight we see that Warhol was unique, original and incredibly talented. No one actually did end up recreating or copying his work, perhaps out of fear of being labeled unoriginal (something which Warhol would have been thrilled about) or the fact that Andy Warhol did have an aesthetic eye and was able to capture the zeitgeist of his time better than anyone else.   His delegation of his work to others shows that an artist is not just about individuality, but teamwork and oversight.

 

Warhol- 100 Soup Cans-1962

 

The use of repetition in the work of Andy Warhol is perhaps the most interesting and challenging components of his Pop Art. The use of the silkscreen negated the artistic covenant of talent, but the use of repetition negated the concept of preciousness.    The famous 100 Campbell’s soup cans were quite a challenge to art patrons of the time. They were faced with a painting that showed a verbatim depiction of an  object that they could see at the grocery store.  Not only was the subject matter profoundly banal and devoid of emotional resonance, it was repeated 100 times to further its mundanity.  When questioned about it, Warhol gave a typically vapid response that he simply loved the soup and ate it a lot.  If this is to be taken literally, then one would believe that the painting has no actual meaning or merit. It didn’t take artistic talent to paint it, it is not individual, and it has no meaning beyond it’s surface level.   Under the surface though, the very things that negate it give it special meaning. The personal story was very matter of fact.  Warhol stated that he had soup for lunch everyday for twenty years and that he loved it. This ritualistic life is evoked in the relentlessness of the painting. On a level of social commentary, his repetition of the cans immediately evokes the image of their display at a grocery store.  Perhaps Warhol was commenting that the popular Abstract Expressionism of the day was losing it’s meaning with it’s strict rules and homogeneous result.  Or, perhaps, he liked the red and gold label!  Any of these interpretations are possible and likely. His work is open to however many layers of meaning one wants to put onto it.  It was very popular because the surface was captivating with or without the subtext.

 

Many Many Marilyns

 

His endlessly repeated images of Marilyn Monroe or Elvis Presley commented on our hero worship.  They also seemed to contain a secret to the sadness of a superficial life.   The famous are our replacements for deities.  Warhol would say none of these more profound and troubling observations about these works were true. He would simply say that he liked Marilyn Monroe and Elvis.   He would have a harder time explaining away the obvious subtext of media desensitization with his series of repeated  car crashes, electric chairs, and wanted fugitives.  These more gruesome series point towards a clearer social comment that Warhol was making with his work.

 

Electric Chairs

 

The use of repetition had a dual purpose: it was meant to deflate the notion of fine art as well as elevate the mundane aesthetic experiences of our everyday lives.  The silkscreen technique negated the artist’s talent for painting but elevated the silk screen as something more than just a technique.  Andy Warhol wants us to question the prerequisites of art; talent, individuality, preciousness and passion.  By seemingly eliminating these elements he distills the art to its fundamental expression: technique.  This opens the work up to various interpretations.   One can look at his works and come to the conclusion that the guy was a hack or that he had a talent for making bold colorful images, or there was something else more profound and troubling in commentary to a consumerist culture that has replaced gods with product and hollow symbolism.  Or maybe he just likes boring things.  Andy Warhol took on the flavor of his time in an honest way, even if that meant that the world he lived in was increasingly devoid of a spiritual and emotional connection.

 

Warhol- Paint by Numbers

 

End Note:  This is the second post in a row not about architecture.  The next couple posts will explore the themes I’m exploring in fine art with architecture.

Posted in Fine Art | 5 Comments

The New Medium is the Message.

Super (Pixelated) Mario!

A good friend has alerted me to an emerging art movement that I think is vital to our times.  This new movement is known as Pixel Art, and before I explain what it is too much I will start off with several precedents that give the new movement added depth and a logical foundation.

Seurat-Springtime-1888

Georges Seurat and the Eyeball:

In art, new movements are rarely without precedent.  Most artistic movements are adaptations to the means and methods of the period they were created in.  They could be thought of as almost a compromise with the available technology of the time.  Early cave dwellers had a very limited range of pigment.  They also had not invented various techniques in art that would shorten the gulf between image and reality such as perspective and light and shade. These elements of photorealistic painting were perfected around the time of the Renaissance.  During the 19th century a restless spirit began to rumble.  Photography was invented.  This new technology effectively mooted the need for artistic rendering as documentation of reality.  It was a serious crisis for all major painters. Artists began looking not only at the subject of their paintings but also the way that they were actually painted.  They started questioning the tools that they used to express a visual representation of reality.  They also started to question perception itself.  Recent scientific developments were discovering how the eye takes processes light. Rods and cones in the eye were the building blocks for vision.  It was discovered that our vision was compartmentalized into processing a complex mess of very simple colors.  Georges Seurat was greatly influenced by these new scientific studies, particularly the work of Michel Eugène Chevreul and his breakdown of colors into primary and complimentary colors.  With this knowledge Seurat invented a new way of painting deemed Pointillism by its critics.  In Pointillism the painting is broken up into small dots of pure color. When looked at from far away it creates a painted representation of reality.  This was one of the first times when a trick of perception became the message of the work. Seurat’s new painting style allowed us to question exactly how we perceive our world.  Painting was no longer just about representation; it was about the technique of representation.  Similar in concept to Seurat’s work are the later works of Monet.  Monet had developed cataracts and it seems that his paintings were a reflection of his impaired perception.  They brought attention to the fact that painting is not about capturing reality but interpreting it.

Seurat had many critics. The coined term pointillism was a mocking word invented by his opponents to deride its place in art.  Innovation in art is often misunderstood. Hindsight is the true test.

Monet: Giverny. 1922

Andy Warhol: Air Crash. 1962

Pop Artists and Pulp:

A similar exploitation of the means of perception was carried out in the mid twentieth century with the emergence of Pop Art.  Andy Warhol used the everyday mundane printing method of the silk screen to create his “paintings”.   The technique of visual media, taken for granted because of its everyday banality, was recontextualized and elevated to the realm of art. The perception of what tools could create art were questioned. (Andy Warhol is an endlessly complex and mysterious artist.  I could go on for days about what he accomplished so I think I’ll save this for another more relevant post.)

Roy Lichtenstein: Brushstroke. 1965

Roy Lichtenstein took it a step further. Like Seurat, he analyzed the building blocks of modern perception.  The newspapers and magazines of the time were printed in a halftone process. This was essentially a series of tiny dots that when combined and looked at from a slight distance created photo realistic images. Popular comics books used a similar method called Ben-Day. They are used to create complex colors with the simple use of primary colors and a mixture of white ratios. For example, pink could be created with red dots and a white background.  This is basically a systematization of Seurat’s pointillism process and thus an  imitation of how the eye perceives visuals.  Lichtenstein took the banal images of comic books and blew them up to large proportions. He created them with a facsimile of the Ben-Day process to draw attention to the way people saw printed imagery in the middle twentieth century.  One of my favorite paintings by Lichtenstein goes even further in making us question the techniques used in fine art.  In his Brushstroke series, Lichtenstein paints a caricatured image of a sloppy paint brush stroke with a smooth technique that is flawlessly even. He uses the technique of painting to draw attention to itself!  The background is a solid wall of Ben-Day dots.  The content of uniqueness and spontaneity are contrasted wildly with the rigorously disciplined technique of the painting.

Pop Art, just like Pointillism, was initially met with hostility.  Pulling the rug out from under our expectations of art and our ideas of perception naturally comes as a shock.  Hindsight has shown the profound influential nature of Pop Art.  Its presence is still strongly felt in the popular subconscious.

Atari Pong Graphics. 1970s.

The Eye of the Computer:

The new medium for visual dissemination in our time is the computer and the Internet and the building blocks for the images we see is the pixel.  This is something that we don’t even think about anymore with our new High Definition ultra fine quality screens rendering the pixel itself all but invisible.  But, at the dawning of the computer age the pixel was everywhere. The building blocks of digital imagery were clearly visible and limited in what they could achieve when trying to represent any sense of realism.  Before the Internet, the original need for any imagery via computers came with video games.  The history of the video game is essentially the evolution of the pixel and its journey from abstraction to realism.  One of the first video games ever was the Atari Pong game and one almost laughs in the 21st century at how stiflingly limited the graphics are.  Yet with simple blocks they are able to convey a bird’s eye view of a tennis court.  Gradual innovations and larger capacities for memory allowed graphics to gradually get better over time.  Dithering was a method of representing complex colors with the simple colors similar to the Ben-Day printing process. The newest game that one can buy right now is nearly as good and photorealistic as the best computer animated imagery of a Hollywood film.  The pixel went from representational to real.  In the last few years, certain artists have come to exploit the pixel as a means of artistic expression.  Once again they are calling attention to how we perceive our current world.

eboy: Pixel Art

The pixel is essentially no different from Rods and Cones and Half tone printing and Pixel art is conceptually no different than Pointillism, and the work of Roy Lichtenstein.  The pixel is the building block of image as used in the newest technology of our time: the computer.   Certain artists are carrying in the tradition of the pop artists by drawing attention to the pixel as a means or artistic realization.  The new medium is the message!  Lichtenstein used his technique and the imagery of the comic book because it was the popular and mundane content of its time. Similarly pixel artists use the vocabulary of video games as their content of choice. The pixel art group eboy uses the building blocks of pixels and the vocabulary of the video game to elevate something that was not thought of as art to that realm. Certain sculptural works placed in real places have a jarring effect that really bring to the forefront of our mind the actual disconnect between the computer image and reality.  The recontextualized pixel exploits our ideas of visual reality. The pixel sculpture lies to tell the truth!

Pixel water sculpture.

With Seurat and Lichtenstein, the original location of their exploited content was in the physical realm, but with pixel art the original medium is in the computer. Thus, many pixel artists believe the only way the art should be displayed is on a computer.  The content of the pixel (the video game) is also some artists preferred expression.  Ted Martens’ Fireplace (http://www.tedmartens.com/fireplace/) takes a real activity and creates a video game out of it using highly exaggerated and limited pixelization.  The point is to use pixels in the most abstract way without losing the represented imagery.

PIxel Art as cartoon reality.

After learning about Pixel art and comparing its precedents I realized it is the most valid and perhaps important artistic movement in a long time.  It takes the very fundamental nature of our time and distills it.  It removes itself from its original frustrating purpose and keeps us from taking advantage of the computer.   I hope that it seeps its way into the popular conscience, something which art hasn’t done since Pop Art.

When one looks around their world and thinks about the current popular technology of visual expression, a rich vein of consciousness emerges regarding the fundamental way we perceive our world.  I wonder where it will take us next!

End Note:  With the help of Sarah ( http://brintendo.tumblr.com/ ) and Ted I am proposing a new museum project to house newly emerging pixel art. This museum will be presented in a future post!

Cupcake: Ashley Anderson

Posted in Fine Art | Leave a comment

This is my new home!

I have moved my blog from Blogger to WordPress.   A new post will be up shortly about my new interest in a Digital/Pixel art museum suggested by a good friend who is a video game designer.   Dualities will abound in this project.   I’m new to WordPress, so let me post a few photos just to get the hang of it.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Old in the New: The Innovation/Tradition Duality of Le Corbusier

Vitruvian Man Vs. Modern Man (Da Vinci and Le Corbusier)

The common story about Modern architecture was that it was a complete break from the past. Certain new avant-garde art movements combined with new ways of building created the emergence of a new aesthetic that emphasized a break from tradition. Hardcore Modernists, Futurists, and the De Stilj rejected the past as unnecessary and oppressive, but we see that the master architects of the modern era still retained links and connections to the past in subtle ways. They also looked back further for their inspiration. Some architects became interested in the idea of the primal building; the building that would link us to the essence of ancient mankind. This primitivism was an attempt to find a deeper truth about architecture instead of the shallow and blind reuse of traditional classical symbolism.

Le Corbusier can be thought of as the godfather of modernist vocabulary. He is a perfect example of the way that buildings could be made in an era of new technology and ideology. His five points of architecture were a brand new rulebook for design. But if one takes a closer look at his work and reads a little in his most revolutionary book, Towards a New Architecture, one cans see clear and strong links to the traditions of architecture. Le Corbusier learned many lessons from ancient architecture and he incorporated these into his revolutionary new synthesis.


La Tourette by Le Corbusier. A fount of geometry.

Geometry of the ancients:

Le Corbusier spoke of a lesson to be learned from Rome. The lesson, according to Towards A New Architecture is basically that the vocabulary of Ancient Roman architecture used pure geometric shapes to create bold buildings. The use of geometry that is unfussy and done in an ordered unified way created a rhetoric of power. It also defied and conquered the chaos of nature. Le Corbusier argued that the use of these simple geometries expressed the “pure and simple beauty of architecture.” This lesson is so fundamental that it can easily be translated into the Modernist architectural idiom without specifically evoking Roman precedents. The pure geometries found in the Villa Savoy or La Tourette exude the same bold power of Roman precedents without being derivative of them. One would never mistake the Villa Savoy as Neo-Roman! The duality is that the buildings are taking inspiration from ancient architecture while simultaneously being unprecedented and revolutionary.

Lines of Notre Dame from Towards a New Architecture by Le Corbusier.

Villas La Roche-Jeanneret by Le Corbusier with regulating lines.

Regulating Lines:

Le Corbusier expounded on regulating lines his whole career. He believed that a proportional system placed on the facades of his buildings would create aesthetically beautiful results. By studying major works throughout history including Notre Dame Cathedral, Petite Trianon and the Campidoglio, Corbusier was able to discern proportional regulating factors that sought to create a more wholly unified facade. He subsequently took these systems and applied them to the facades of his ultra Modernist villas. Once again, he takes a fundamental basic lesson from history and translates it onto his revolutionary work. He has found a way to use the past without being imitative.

Dualities right on the page!! The Standard.

Le Corbusier used a standard of proportion and construction to create the Heidi Weber Pavilion.

The Standard:

The chapter in Towards a New Architecture about the goal of creating a standard is the most obvious and intriguing duality found in the book. Here Le Corbusier compares the evolution of the Greek Temple with the evolution of the car. He argues that both of these developing systems were leading towards a perfect standard. This means he believed that through constant improvement and refinement the automobile would reach it’s perfect state in a similar fashion that the Greek Temples reached perfection with the Parthenon. Nothing in the history of architecture is more fascinating than looking at the Greek Temples in chronological order and literally seeing mistakes rectified and proportions refined. He believed the same process was happening with the development of the car and that someday it would reach perfection. When this happened perhaps all cars would look and operate the same. This is largely true, but as we have seen cars are constantly changing due to the needs of the consumer to constantly have something new even though the basic technology of the car changes little. Le Corbusier argued that architecture needed to relearn the concept of refining the standard. He lived in a time of fierce blind tradition and stubborn nostalgia. Architecture needed to break away from this and forge a new way. Ironically ancient precedents inspired the new standard that Corbusier proposed. Once again we see that Le Corbusiers’ revolutionary new way of making architecture was fundamentally grounded on lessons he learned from the past. Great works of art are steeped in precedent. This gives them their subconscious potency.

I feel that the standard is something that most young architects are not interested in any more. They believe that every building should be something new and fresh. The concept of deriving ideas from a project before it seems uninspired or unoriginal. But we should be constantly learning from our past to make each building better. If this is done with diligence, I think eventually all works by a certain architect will begin to look the same, at least on a superficial level. I view this as a positive. Once an architect has reached this plateau they are no longer innovating, but refining. This is where perfection can be reached. This is the creation of the standard. Mies Van Der Rohe got to this point in his late career and Renzo Piano is there right now.

Pure geometries, regulating lines and the goal of the standard all work together to create architecture of rhythm and harmony. The fundamental qualities of architecture are retained but used in new ways. Architecture evolves and adapts. Le Corbusier is teaching us that the wheel should never be reinvented; it should just be reinterpreted through the means and constraints of our time.

For the next post I will explore how other modern architects reconciled the duality between forging a new way of building while utilizing the past.

Mies Van Der Rohe achieved a standard. Chicago Federal Center. (Photo by Argitect)
Posted in Architecture | 3 Comments

Commodity and Delight.


The lovable George Carlin.

George Carlin has a hilarious standup routine where he takes the Ten Commandments and distills them into two. It got me thinking about the holy trinity of architecture by Vitruvius: commodity, firmness and delight. Now, really when you think about it, commodity and firmness basically speak of the same thing. They are both dealing with pragmatic concerns. Commodity includes the logical development of program, economy, and integrated systems within the building. Firmness deals with the structural soundness of the building. These are both logical and necessary concerns. A truly successful building should operate efficiently, economically and structurally. So in the tradition of George Carlin I propose we combine these two rules into the all encompassing word of Commodity. Commodity is a much broader word than firmness. It’s a definition that can successfully imply structural integrity.

Delight speaks of the aesthetic will of the architect. It talks of the more intangible practice of creating beauty. Delight is the effort by the architect to integrate all the pragmatic concerns into a visual language that has rhythm and harmony. This is elusive, indefinable, and (removed of context) seemingly arbitrary. Therefore the rule known as Delight could not possibly be combined with Commodity because they do not share similar motivations.

Too much Delight? Frank Gehry.

The impossibility of artistic bias. Walter Gropius House.


Some of the so called Functionalists of the early twentieth century would argue that a building created in perfect commodity would be by it’s very nature delightful. They would say that aesthetic concerns are outcroppings of logical building. If a true pragmatic functionalist were writing this article right now he/she could go further than me. He or she could pair down the Vitruvian triad to only one rule: Commodity. I love the functionalist ideology, and I believe in it as well, but I also acknowledge that it is next to impossible to be completely impartial when designing a building. The aesthetic will of the architect will present itself no matter how hard one tries to repress it. What is fascinating about the Functionalists is that their aesthetic vocabulary (which they think they didn’t have) is actually a creation of functionalist symbolism. Only in hindsight do visual cues begin to emerge in these harsh buildings that attempt to be free of rhetoric and artistic will. Still, I think it is a noble direction to strive in. I believe in the power and posterity of the universal over the individual.

Robert Venturi’s diagram of the Functionalist Vitruvian method. (From Learning from Las Vegas).

So, discounting the Functionalists, there are two basic tenets of architecture; Commodity and Delight. The architect must walk a tightrope between aesthetic and pragmatic concerns. This is the dual nature of the architect. By our very nature we are conflicted individuals. We are unsatisfied with total logic. We are unsatisfied with the complete freedom awarded to the fine artist. We are hypocrites towards our own desires. Long live the dual natured architect!

Now for some comedy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YzEs2nj7iZM

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments