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16 August

Aug 16 '13 0
Quondam
Aug 16, 13 11:45 am

The farmer politely asked me to take some brandy with my water--also if I would eat some apple pie and milk, he had some dinner. I declined the acceptance as I had fully satisfied my apetite. We talked on farming etc. The rain being over I walked on untill I came to Mr. Eddows place--here they gave me fruit and I made a slight sketch of their house almost covered with trees. Then took directions to Mr. Swift's farm--about three miles distant, but finding his maiden sister had here set close at hand I crossed through the bushes and came to it in a back way. I found her at home and was received politely. I admired the situation of the house and the taste of improvements, made a sketch of the house, on an eminance with sloping lawn before it round which a gravel walk bordered with many hundred flowering shrubs. Having finished my drawing, I took tea with Miss Swift and her sisters. I thought then to shape my course toward Germantown, but the ladies observed that it was growing late--they thought I had better take the morning for my walk. I accepted the offer as I wished to make another sketch which would define what was deficient in the first, and I could have the pleasure of their conversation. I made my sketch before breakfast, and then I said I would visit the brother. Introducing myself as a rambler for blackberries, he told me he would show an abundance of fine trees. I spent the day and slept here. He is a widower. Three daughters & Miss [illeg]kley ever busy in preparing for a wedding.

The next day [16 August 1824] I drew a sketch of Miers Fisher's place. Returning homeward, I made two sketches of Mr. Hartshorn's seat, then the Friend's Asylum, and reached Philadelphia as they were lighting lamps. I walked upwards twelve miles that day, and it has not surprised how little when I found myself without fatique, and my health greatly improved.
--Charles Wilson Peale

...[the] quote from Scully concerning the Campo Marzio hanging over Kahn's desk. This is very likely the first time I became aware of the existence of Piranesi's Campo Marzio...

...distinguishing reenactment from archeology.

Was Piranesi trying to recapture the ancient Roman imagination?

...the Via Flamina and its odd placement in the Campo Marzio. Fasolo refers to the placement of the Via Flaminia as arbitrary. This then also brings into question the positioning of the Equiria, (which Fasolo wrongly identified as a waterway) and how the Via Flaminia today is actually the route inscribed by the Equiria of the Campo Marzio, and how the present day Corso, whose name refers to the ancient race course (I still have to verify this) is not depicted within Piranesi's Campo Marzio but the "arbitrary" Via Flaminia seems to take its place as the "main street" of the redrawing.

...note the locations in the Campo Marzio where Piranesi actually did excavation--this information is available in Lanciani's Forma Urbis Romae.

There is also the connection between the big scoop on the bank of the Tiber (depicted on the Nolli plan) and the Natatio (beach) at the same location in the Campo Marzio.

...a comparison between the Minerva Medica and the Horti Luciliani. Piranesi may be, at times, loose with what he puts where and what the buildings look like, but he is consistent in terms of finding his inspiration in actual Roman buildings.

...begin the analysis of the Campo Marzio as fertilized architecture with the Porticus Neronianae. The plan itself is like the proverbial missing link because it has both the traditional and the new geometric state all in one design. There is also the solid/void issue which leads directly to the intercourse building in terms of inside/outside, figure ground, penis/vagina, male/female.

...there are references to fecundity in Tafuri, Wilton-Ely, and Fasolo.

Did Piranesi's own imagination itself reach a new "fertilized" state--a state where creative manifestation began to occur exponentially rather that merely linearly?

genetic 1 a : relating to or determined by the origin, development, prior history, or causal antecedents of some phenomenon : CAUSAL, HISTORICAL, EVOLUTIONARY b : based on or determined by evolution from a common source -- used esp. of relations among languages or among words and grammatical forms of languages c : concerned with or seeking to explain, interpret, or understand (as a literary or psychological phenomenon) in terms of its origin and development or of its causal antecedents 2 : of or relating to genetics : characterized or produced by processes of genetics

genetic 1 a : a branch of biology that deals with the heredity and variation or organisms and with the mechanisms by which these are effected 3 : GENESIS

First off, I have to correct a mistake I made in writing here yesterday. I wrote that I have yet to see a footnote reference regarding the damnatio memoriae of Crispus and Fausta, and that statement is plain wrong. In truth I have seen the footnote, but not recently. Hans Pohlsander provides exactly what I was asking for within the Crispus and Fausta web pages at roman-emperors.org. Pohlsander provides all the dm occurrences within the Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum for both imperials: documented are six occurrences of dm for Crispus and one for Fausta, and the one of Fausta's is also one of Crispus'. I looked at all the referenced inscriptions (in CIL) yesterday afternoon at Temple University's Paley Library. I'm not fluent in Latin to have been able to read everything, but I understand enough to know that there is very good documentation on this specific subject.

I also borrowed Hedrick's History and Silence, which was in the exact same stack area as the CIL. Seeing that Hedrick immediately writes about Piranesi in the book's Preface made the book doubly interesting to me. Yes, it is a very good (and quite timely) book. Last night when I got around to reading chapter four at leisure (I skipped to chapter four, but already read the preface during dinner), I found myself understanding exactly what Hedrick was relating, namely that he was very close to describing reenactment. I quickly found that the first footnote in chapter four references Collingwood and reenactment. This is a topic I too have been working on since 1997, and just last week I began publishing pieces of my work (0718) (0723) (0802).

Now on to other wavelengths oscillating here at lt-antiq. Regarding Helena and calendrical coincidences, I no doubt appreciate what Paul Halshall writes. I, in turn, truly wish I had the academic background that makes doing saint cultus research and reading a not so almost impossible (for me) task. Nonetheless, saint cults are not finite sets or a done deal. As far as I'm concerned the Saint Helena cult (for example) is certainly hitting a new high crest.

But, of course, there are many, like Richard Burgess, who have, like Saint Thomas, doubts as strong as convictions. These cases only enforce the reality that history's real job is to understand what did happen, not so much what didn't happen. Hedrick's History and Silence is on this point axiomatic.

Here's an apropos quotation from History and Silence (page 91):
"The history of political repression of social and cultural memory in ancient Rome, of the so-called damnatio memoriae, has yet to be written. Even the traditional narrative descriptions of the processes by which the state attacked the memory of those deemed public enemies are out of date or incomplete. Vittinghoff's classic book is more than fifty years old and is far from exhaustive. A full account of the damnatio memoriae would be a major project for a mature and accomplished Roman historian."

When reading all that has just been sent to lt-antiq on damnatio memoriae, I sense exactly the project that Hedrick is calling for.

Interesting how Denise Scott Brown mentions "A small church or synagogue, set within a row of town houses or surrounded by office buildings, holds its own with dignity" in her editorial/op-ed piece on development of Lower Manhattan in today's (2002) NYTimes.

[Just four days earlier in 2002, I wrote, "I am now reminded of an anecdote R. told me the day after I took R. and S. to see Ahavath Israel some Sunday morning October 2000. After our visit to the Kahn building, R. and S. went to have lunch with Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown. They told the famous architects about having just seen Kahn's first building. Venturi apparently acted in some kind of disbelief, as if the building didn't even exist. He said something like, "But it's not even in the catalogue!?!" I assume Venturi was referring the Louis I. Kahn: In The Realm of Architecture. R. told them to look up the (then) webpages at www.quondam.com that displayed images of the building."]

In Durand's Recueil et parallèle des édifices de tout genre, anciens & modernes, remarquables par leur beauté, par leur grandeur ou par leur singularité, 1800, where a 'history' of architecture is presented via plans and elevations all drawn at the same scale and categorized by type (ie, temples, churches, palaces, theaters, etc.), the only building/structure larger than St. Peter's Basilica is the Great Pyramid of Giza--the Great Pyramid originally reached a height of 480 ft.; St. Peter's reaches 452 ft.; the U.S Capitol reaches 287.5 ft. From this 'record', it is likely safe to say that St. Peter's is the largest hollow stone/masonry building.


The Iron Curtain was certainly real/physical between East and West Germany. From the two Germanys, the Iron Curtain proceeded south all the way to the Adriatic Sea, ending between Trieste, Italy and Yugoslavia. A writer took a specific journey along the entire length of the Iron Curtain--before the book was published, much of it was first printed in the New Yorker (1983 or 84) in three parts (which is what I read). I seem to recall that the "fence" was mostly real and contiguous from north to south, although the severity of the 'curtain' and what it manifest and represented gradually diminished the further south it was.

I traveled (by car) through two (of the three?) checkpoints between the West and East German border in May 1990. [These checkpoints are not to be confused with the 'famous' Alpha, Bravo and Charlie Checkpoints--A and B between West Berlin and East Germany, and Charlie specifically between East and West Berlin. I went through A, B and C, plus I crossed over the Glienike Bridge between West Berlin and Potsdam--this is the bridge were spies were famously traded.] The Iron Curtain was very real at these points. This was an interesting time because the Berlin Wall was already coming down, but there were still two Germany's, thus the 'checking' at the checkpoints (for all Germans at least) was relatively lax, although the whole 'apparatus' was still in place. In fact, at my final crossing from East to West at Erfurt, the gates were just open and there were no guards anywhere to be seen.

There is a very good scale comparison of "shopping" places, from Trajan's Market (110 AD) to Super K-Mart (1997) within the Harvard School of Design Guide to Shopping--this is for sure a continuation of Durand's method.

I have some ideas about how to design sacred space, and they have to do with making it osmotic and electromagnetic. Some of Kahn's best architecture is osmotic and electromagnetic.








...where we see Postmodern architecture related to the growing trend of realism in film (including cinematic pornography). Not exactly a parallel development, but more where realism in films opened up designers/architect's minds to a more realistic approach to designing buildings/environments. Prior to realism, most films were an adapted form of theater/stage production. Realism in film presented 'real' situations within 'real' settings. [Yes, there is the omnipresent irony of films themselves not being real to begin with.]

aside: Does anyone else remember the paparazzi catching Jackie O. after she saw I am Curious (yellow).

Outside the stage directions of the Modern Movement there is the quickly found serendipity of everyday living/experience, and this realm of no clear rules beyond the immediate context of the situation made it easy for (what Portoghesi called) 'the end of prohibitionism'.

Postmodern architecture would not have happened without a certain frame of mind, and that frame of mind was becoming more and more prevalent within films of the later 1960s and 1970s.

Strictly within architecture itself, Scully, in 'How things got to be the way they are now', finds the genesis of Postmodern architecture with Kahn and Kahn's Beaux Arts education and Roman-ness (wrapped together via Piranesi's plan of the Campo Marzio).

It seems worth noting that the two most significant architects to come out of the 'Strada Novissima' are Frank Gehry and Rem Koolhaas/OMA.

I think you have to first define what 'that' is.

Otherwise, architecture still pretty much operates within the 'realm of no clear rules beyond the immediate context of the situation'.

Many of the architects who utilized "the application of content and forms and motifs that are deliberately identifiable in cultural and historical terms" 30 years ago still design that way today (if they are still active and/or alive).

The first Greenaway film I saw was The Draughtsman's Contract in 1983, 27 years ago, and that's the kind of murder mystery I'm talking about.

The first Tarantino film I saw was Pulp Fiction in 1994 and soon after that architecture started becoming very virtual.

Of course architecture and film evolve for the most part independently, as I already referenced Scully and Kahn above.

The relation between film and postmodern architecture I'm here discussing is not one where the architecture emulates the films, rather architects took on the 'realist' frame of mind of 60s and 70s films, again where there are no clear rules beyond the immediate context of the situation.

Architecture today is still very eclectic, diverse even, and, perhaps more now than ever, there are no clear rules beyond the immediate context of the situation.

creative: the vast majority of more recent residential architecture.

ingenutiy: the more recent residential projects of Koolhaas/OMA.

I just looked out my living room window to see from where Charles Wilson Peale drew the all the way above sketch. I've been going to Lorimer Park behind Fox Chase Farm the last three early dusks to see deer. On Tuesday there was a herd of 13-15 deer, the most I'd seen around here since c. 2000. Wednesday I saw five, a doe and four very young ones, plus the added surprise of seeing a bull mount a cow and procede with intercourse, followed by a copy-cat calf that mounted but otherwise couldn't quite reach. And last evening there was first a group of seven (three with antlers), and then a group of three in the pasture. I'm pretty sure the deer eat the blackberries I sometimes see in Lorimer Park.

 

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