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2007.01.16 20:00
Minimalism in Architecture
I understand what you're saying, but is any aesthetic really objective?
You can understand an architect's work by learning their intentions, but you can understand even more of an architect's work by learning from their mistakes too.

2007.02.19 16:57
what is today's movement?
Client: "Can you design for me a confused architecture?"
Architect: "I can try."
1. to perplex or bewilder
2. to make unclear or indistinct
3. to fail to distinguish between; associate by mistake; confound: to confuse dates
4. to disconcert or abash
5. to combine without order; jumble; disorder
6. Archaic. to bring to ruin or naught.

2007.03.26 11:56
...and speaking of random tangents
"The history of architecture is replete with successful projects that are the result of novelity found within false history and, more recently, outmoded science.
Historian Rudolf Wittkower, in Architectural Principles in the Age of Humanism, gives as an example Andrea Palladio's historical error attributing superimposed pediments to the Pantheon giving erroneous historical legitimacy to his unsurpassed Venetian churches."
--Reiser + Umemoto, Atlas of Novel Tectonics, p. 170.
Go read pages 89 to 97 of Architectural Principles in the Age of Humanism to see what examples Wittkower really gave.
Do you think Reiser + Umemoto purposefully wrote historical error within their passage about historical error in order to more strongly make the point about the modus operandi of historical error in design itself?

2007.08.02 11:00
Film Director Ingmar Bergman Dies
[coincidental reading within the last hour...]
... This is why cinema is the most alive, the most exciting, the most important of all art forms right now. Perhaps the way one tells how alive a particular art form is by the latitude it gives for making mistakes in it and still being good. For example, a few of the films of Bergman--though crammed with lame messages about the modern spirit, thereby inviting interpretations--still triumph over the pretentious intentions of their director. In Winter Light and The Silence, the beauty and visual sophistication of the images subvert before our eyes the callow pseudo-intellectuality of the story and some of the dialogue. (The most remarkable instance of this sort of discrepancy is the work of D.W. Griffith.) In good films, there is always a directness that entirely frees us from the itch to interpret. Many old Hollywood films, like those of Cukor, Walsh, Hawks, and countless other directors, have this liberating anti-symbolic quality, no less than the best work of the new European directors, like Truffaut's Shoot the Piano Player and Jules and Jim, Godard's Breathless and Vivre Sa Vie, Antonioni's L'Avventura, and Olmi's The Fiances.
--Susan Sontag, "Against Interpretation" (1964).
I wonder what the Sontag, Bergman and Antonioni are discussing right now. No doubt something beyond the status quo, perhaps even beyond interpretation.

2008.04.04 12:36
Currently reading Privacy and Publicity: Modern Architecture as Mass Media, and got up to p. 84 yesterday morning while waiting for the repair of an automatic car window. There is an unfortunate manuscript error on page 68:
lines 1-4
Benjamin cites a sentence of Theodor Reik... Remembrance is essentially conservative; memory is destructive."
lines 14-15
In these terms, Reik's distinction between conservative memory and destructive remembrance...
As they stand (at least in the 1994 hardback edition), these lines contradict each other, and thus completely confuse the issue. Now checking the source, lines 1-4 correctly recall Reik's distinction.
Staying on page 68, I (personally) use/translate Erfahrung as 'a knowledge of', and Erlebnis as 'an actual experience of', in the sense that Erfahrung is more or less a reenactment of Erlebnis.

2008.04.05 10:32
Page 68 of Privacy and Publicity: Modern Architecture as Mass Media is loaded, and the dyslexical error therein provides a spark capable of igniting an explosion. More truth may in fact lie with the notion that the attributes of memory and remembrance are indeed interchangably fluid rather than strictly opposed. Le Corbusier's 'doctoring' of photography (as discussed in the chapter after page 68) even seems to be a perfect example of the interchangable fluidity of memory and remembrance.
--Balloon and Prick: Modern Reading as Virtual Architecture, (forthcoming).
currently on my 'book table':
Privacy and Publicity: Modern Architecture as Mass Media
The Limits of Interpretation
The Changing Light at Sandover
The Architecture of Humanism: A Study in the History of Taste
The Fifties
The Rise of Scientific Philosophy
Promises, Promises: Essays on Psychoanalysis and Literature
Difference & Repetition
Man and Time
The Anaesthetics of Architecture
The Diaries of Paul Klee
Edmund Husserl's Origin of Geometry: An Introduction
"The Boudoir in The Expanded Field"
The Production of Space
Art in America,
April 2008
Artforum, April 2008
51N4E space producers
Shrinking Cities
Festival Architecture
Future City: Experiment and Utopia in Architecture
Yves Brunier, Landscape Architect

...perhaps a sign of being neither student nor architect; sondern etwas anderes.

2008.06.26 08:05
Can you say canonical?
Odd dyslexical, editorial mistakes on pages 88 and 89 (etc.):
On page 88, the fifth floor is depicted, yet it is labeled and analyzed as if it were the fourth floor.
Likewise, on page 89, the fourth floor is depicted, yet it is labeled and analyzed as if it were the fifth floor.
The mistake is carried through on page 91 where "...the fulcrum for the spiraling movement in the second, third and fourth floors." should actually read "second, third and fifth floors."
Additionally, what is 'interpreted' as a central stair core of the building, is actually a stacked pair of up and down escalators. The stair "core" of the building is someplace else.
And it is unfortunate that the stage set is missed altogether within the 'canonical' analysis, as it would have offered the 'missing link' of clarity to the whole figure/grid development.
Hejduk, wo bist du?
In the Introduction, Eisenman emphasizes the notion of "close reading", yet, with the series of mistakes within (at least) the Palais des Congrès analysis, I have to wonder just how closely Eisenman actually "read" these buildings and how much was simply relied upon the student analyses that the book is based on.

2008.07.21 09:02
bored with modern & contemporary, yet?
"What Stein discovered was a writing style that celebrated its grammatical mistakes. In her most radical prose, she managed to make us conscious of all the linguistic work that is normally done unconsciously. We notice the way verbs instantly get conjugated (even irregular verbs), the way nouns naturally become plural, and the way we amend articles to fit their subjects. Stein always said that the only way to read her writing was to proofread it, to pay acute attention to all the rules she violates. Her errors trace the syntactical structures we can't see, as our "inside becomes outside."* Stein showed us what we put into language by leaving it out."
* This isn't as strange a method as it might seem. Ludwig Wittgenstein hit upon a similar method for his philosophy, which, like Stein's writing, was interested in the uses of language to the exclusion of almost everything else. Wittgenstein once said that he worked by "mak[ing] a tracing of the physiognomy of every [philosophical] error." Only by mapping out mistakes could he see how best to proceed. Samuel Beckett also subscribed to Stein's literary approach. "Let us hope that a time will come," Beckett wrote, "when language is most efficiently used where it is being misused. To bore one hole after another in it, until what lurks behind it--be it something or nothing--begins to seep through; I cannot imagine a higher goal for a writer today."
Jonah Lehrer, Proust was a Neuroscientist (2007), p. 164.
Here we have 'modernist' thinking.
Alberti's thinking appears more Platonic.
Michelangelo's thinking appears more Aristotelian.

2008.08.07 08:44
I smell a Vorläufer
"The errors that Robert Adam detected in Palladio's drawings for the reconstruction of the 'Baths', published in 1730 as Fabbriche antiche disegate da Andrea Palladio, encouraged a dismissive attitude to Palladio and led him to question the accuracy of the renaissance as a reliable recorder of classical architecture. It became easy for the brothers to delude themselves into thinking that they alone possessed a deep insight into the antique and had the knowledge necessary to correct the errors of renaissance draughtsmen. But such an arrogant stance was more a public one, which did not stand in the way of their serious study of the renaissance or their need to borrow directly from it, from time to time. The enormous variety found there appealed to them as much as the inventive classicism of the antique."
Just as an aside, Fabbriche antiche disegate da Andrea Palladio was used in the formation of Roma Interrotta Sector VI.

2008.08.17 11:41
Adam (sans Eve) in the Garden of Satire
Wednesday 8-17-77
Baroque churches of Rome
in transit to Venice
Churches were nice--first organized tour in a couple of days A lot of sketching and separateness.
Ate at a horrible place around Termini.
Train at night was a horrible mistake.

chapters of AinCC
1. [sic]
2. To ERr with SuperGlue(TM)
3. Bilocation Syndrome
4. Going into Eclectic Shock
5. Surgical Double Theater
6. Waiting Room: Anxious, Reading, Liszt
7. Operation a Sucess; Patient Dead
8. Malpractice Case: House
9. Eternal Wrest
For [sic] I can collect all the various mistakes I've found over the years, starting with Immacualte Conception. It would be possible to limit the chapter to this material. I'll know better once the bulk of the material has been collected.
To ERr w/SG could be the whole Eisenman as Piranesi expose and an unraveling (somewhat) of Tafuri's interpretation (of the Campo Marzio). The missing notion of reenactment within "dans le boudoir" could happen here.
Bilocation Syndrom could be all about IQ and how it operates. Perhaps including thoughts on virtual and real and how there can be two places where things occur (simultaneously?).
My thoughts for Eclectic Shock were all about the recombinant architectures stuff. I suppose that's the point, but I'd like good shock to be involved as well.
Right now I have no idea what "surgical double theater" is really about. I suppose I could go through TX2 and TX2, too for further ideas and hope that that's enough. The surgical aspect may occur in cutting the various double theaters open and thus finding new meaning, inspiration, modus operandi, etc. I could take all the sic items and operate on them, but not ultimately be able to fix it all.
"Waiting Room: Anxious, Reading, Liszt" could have something to do with copyright-free texts and altered texts and lots, lots of them--the wordiest chapter of the book that doesn't really have to mean anything. (At this point I got Encyclopedia Britannica to read about Liszt.)

2009.01.30 10:42
Venturi's Lieb House (No. 9) House to be moved (or demolished)
The article linked at the opening of this thread does not say that the Lieb House is in danger of being wrecked if it is not off the property by Monday, rather:
The company will begin today [Wednesday] to jack up the house and slip steel rollers under the foundation, said Kendal Siegrist, a manager. By Friday, it should reach the parking lot in Barnegat's marina.
How long it will sit there is anyone's guess. "Maybe several days," Siegrist suggested.
So, it seems while all of the above was being written, the Lieb House was actually being moved down a Loveladies street and into Barnaget Light.
I'm guessing the paperwork for the receiving end will indeed eventually materialize, and the house will sail on--Teatro del Mondo take 2.
Somol's "My Mother the House" really is a funny piece of architecture criticism. Funny in that it takes itself seriously as criticism while actually being very undercooked satire. Overall, what he accuses Scully's criticism of being, Somol then produces several times over--a magician who's tricks rely mainly on the likes of out-take editing. Very superficial and not surgical at all.
Two errors, one typical and sad, the other just strange. Again the Immaculate Conception was confused for the Incarnation, and Venturi did not "substitute the functionless TV antenna for the Madonna that he originally planned to place atop the Guild House." The Guild House was designed for a Quaker Institution.
What I see in the picture of the young Judy Lieb sitting on the steps with her kids is a bored housewife down the shore for the summer while Mr. Lieb remains at work in the city and only comes down for the weekends.

2009.01.30 17:01
Venturi's Lieb (No. 9) House to be moved (or demolished)
Apparently, Vanna Venturi sitting in front of her house is an updated Annunciation painting, and the "Immaculate Conception" [sic] is happening.
I call Somol's criticism superficial because all he really talks about is pictures and not the architecture itself.



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