LeDeuzzy, Q.

The first entropic artist was...

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Entropy attracted artists well before the 1960s, when Robert Smithson made it his motto, and many took it up after him, In the hands of these artists, entropy operates in various ways: by degradation, by redundancy, by accumulation, infinite profusion, by inversion, by tearing, by lack of elasticity, by the invasion of "noise" into the message, by wear and tear, but also by under-usage or nonconsumption. Entropy is a sinking, a spoiling, but perhaps also an irrecoverable waste. The first entropic artist was Giambattista Piranesi, about whom Henry-Charles Puech says:

[Beginning with Piranesi], man is definitively overrun by what he creates and what little by little boundlessly destroys him. The obsessional idea of construction, the ordering of stones or of machines, these human triumphs! carried to an extreme, open an infinite vista of nightmares and of multiplied punishments wrought by the automatic law of the vaults, the pillars, the stairways, a multiplication there is no reason to stop (totality, form existing only on a human scale, man is outstripped by the very need for representation that has unleashed this crushing force).37
Rosalind Krauss, Formless: A User's Guide (1997), pp. 38-40.

37. Henry-Charles Puech, "Les 'Prisons' de Jean Baptiste Piranesi," Documents2 (1930), no, 4, p. 204. Thinking in particular of his Pianta di ampio magnifico collegio and of the famous plan of the Campo Marzio dell'antica Roma. Manfredo tafuri would characterize Piranesi's work as "an architectural banquet of nausea, an empty dictionary created by an excess of visual noise" (Tafuri, "'The Wicked Architect': D.B. Piranesi, Heterotopia, and the Voyage," in The Sphere and the Labyrinth [Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1987], p. 35).

Piranesi, etc.
…Piranesi as a proto-metabolic thinker/designer/etc.
…what Piranesi did (especially) in the Ichnographia of the Campo Marzio was to metabolize Roman architecture. …metabolizing was exactly what Piranesi was doing, but not only in the Campo Marzio… …Piranesi's chimney pieces and candelapera as designs composed through a breaking down and re-combination of many disparate historical elements.
…the early modern movement in architecture falls in the camp of assimilation (absorption and purging), and that only in some (perhaps rare) cases did modern architecture reach the metabolic camp, e.g. Le Corbusier's late architecture is a prime example of how an architect can make the transition from assimilation to metabolism.
Piranesi's importance in history is still yet to become realized in that metabolism and a metabolizing imagination are exactly what the future holds in store. Piranesi's total influence and worth are not totally known yet…

Campo Marzio
…it seems as if Piranesi had to totally purge the site before he could venture into metabolizing the site.

chronosomatics architecture
…a distinction between the architecture of assimilation as opposed to the architecture of metabolism. Renaissance is assimilating. Michelangelo is metabolic, as is Baroque architecture. Piranesi is a great example of how assimilation and metabolism come together, and the early modern movement (Purism, Bauhaus) is a perfect example of the end of assimilation. I will also be able to approach the analysis of Le Corbusier’s Villa Savoye and the Palais des Congrès à Strasbourg as a move (on the part of Le Corbusier’s design methodology) from an assimilation based design process to a metabolic based design project.

1. Introduction.
2a. The Renaissance: Assimilation and Architecture.
2b. Michelangelo: the First Metabolist.
2c. The Baroque and the Enlightenment: Assimilation and Metabolism Together.
3. The Metabolization of History I -- Learning from Piranesi’s Campo Marzio.
4. The Metaboization of History II -- the Architecture of K. F. Schinkel.
5. Purism as Ultimate Assimilation.
6. Towards a Metabolic Architecture.
7. Osmosis and Electro-Magnetism: an Outside Inside Architecture.
…the (as yet unmentioned) distinction between the profane modes of the imagination versus the sacred modes of the imagination. The sacred and profane division may become the overriding format…

Piranesi… … an example of the juncture of the assimilating and metabolic imagination.




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