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peter's canon

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chatter of clouds

i am quite surprised by the many here who have undermined eisenman's influence. if anything, he helped underline, if not most clearly illustrate, a schism between modernist architecture as self referential practice of structure and the same as a figurative practice of noumena beyond the limits of architectural structure; that is to say a schism between the mineral tectonics of here-and-now and the plasmoid bulemia of thought-on-thought.
this delineated what was of course always dormant in modern architecture (references to naval ships, machinary, aegean island houses on one hand..and, on the other hand, the guise of self referentiality of purism on the other ie immaculate conception of art). perhaps this goes back to the eventual cannabilism dormant in vitruvian mimesis. when architecture turns on itself as its mimetic object. has architecture, by establishing itself as the surrogate nature and, hence, mimicing the idea of itself rather than a virgin nature...has it been rendered into a medium of mimesis, rather than merely an outcome of mimesis? does/did not peter embody an autistic hyper awareness of the objectness of architecture whereas rem extols the deliberated unconsciousness of the architectural object? are these two, peter and rem, not, to maintain the psychoanalytic lingo, one case of bipolarity?

 
Aug 21, 08 8:55 am
j-turn

To quote Rem:

“Provocation replaces mimesis as fundamental argument for knowledge and production.”

"You are in a mess, we are in a mess, you are unstructured, we are unstructured, you are vulgar, we are vulgar … there is right now an exciting potential for an architecture that resists this mimesis."

Aug 21, 08 9:15 am  · 
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chatter of clouds

as I said...deliberated unconsciousness

Aug 21, 08 9:24 am  · 
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j-turn

Do you think ...

architecture has meaning?
architecture needs to have meaning?
Can architecture have meaning?
How does architecture have meaning?
Can architecture not have meaning?

...these are the questions.

Aug 21, 08 9:35 am  · 
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evilplatypus

Total bullshit - try figuring out how to make a buck doing this instead of embarassing the rest of us with your mock-intelectual babble. It just enhances the publics perception of us as wanabe philosophers and artists when we are neither. I smell troll.

Aug 21, 08 9:48 am  · 
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chatter of clouds

hm. who is us, lemming?

Aug 21, 08 10:00 am  · 
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SPELLING BEE CHAMPION

Dear noctilucent ...

It's "machinery" not "machinary."

There are plenty of online dictionaries that may be helpful in your endeavor.

May I suggest the Oxford English Dictionary (http://www.oed.com)?

Aug 21, 08 10:15 am  · 
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chatter of clouds

no thank you; i can perfectly deduce the meaning of "petty" from your contribution.

Aug 21, 08 10:27 am  · 
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chatter of clouds

or is it "infer"?

Aug 21, 08 10:28 am  · 
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j-turn

wow, this thread turned ugly quickly.

Can't we have a theory chat without being being called all sorts of names?

Seriously people, it's like the jocks beating up on the drama club here.

Aug 21, 08 10:42 am  · 
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Per--Corell

An architect is a mashin to make houses !

Aug 21, 08 10:46 am  · 
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chatter of clouds

the angst of ugly duckling?

Aug 21, 08 10:47 am  · 
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liberty bell
no thank you; i can perfectly deduce the meaning of "petty" from your contribution.

This made me laugh out loud, noctilucent!

Your initial post, however, just confused me. I seriously glaze over when I read that kind of writing even when it directly relates to the thing I love best, architecture.

But here is one sentence I can grasp a bit: does/did not peter embody an autistic hyper awareness of the objectness of architecture whereas rem extols the deliberated unconsciousness of the architectural object?

Yes, I think they do. Though I'm not sure how "austism" applies. Did you mean "artistic"?

Aug 21, 08 11:40 am  · 
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liberty bell

... and wait: can unconsciousness be deliberated?

I'm not trying to be an asshole, I just really can't get what you're saying even though I sense it might be fun/educational for many to talk about.

Aug 21, 08 11:41 am  · 
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Smokety Mc Smoke Smoke

There's a lot of lingo being bandied around in this here thread.

Aug 21, 08 11:48 am  · 
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file

I mean, really ... could more than 1/10 of 1% of the general public understand even a smidgen of this conversation ... much less some of the vocabulary? And, if they could, would it be relevant to their lives?

If this is how we communicate among ourselves, it's no wonder the people we're in business to serve think us weird and out of touch. Methinks someone's just trying to appear smart by using obscure language and concepts.

As architects, we must have strong communication skills to be successful in our work ... in my world, that means using language in a way that people don't have to wonder too much about what you're saying.

I'm not saying "dumb it down" ... if you want to have a conversation on this topic, fine. But, why not use language and sentence structure that people don't have to wade through with a dictionary?

Aug 21, 08 12:00 pm  · 
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conormac

I applaud your vocabulary and am particularly excited to learn these words:
_______________
noumena
The noumenon (plural: noumena) classically refers to an object of human inquiry, understanding or cognition. It is an object as it is in itself independent of the mind.[1]

The term is generally used in contrast with, or in relation to, "phenomenon" (plural: phenomena), which refers to appearances, or objects of the senses. A phenomenon is that which is perceived; A noumenon is the actual object that emits the phenomenon in question.

It may be further contrasted with the perception and processing of a phenomenon in the human mind, storing it as a meme.
----> which lead me to this: A meme (pronounced /miːm/)[1] is any thought or behavior that can be passed from one person to another by means of imitation. Examples include thoughts, ideas, theories, gestures, practices, fashions, habits, songs and dances. Memes propagate themselves and can move through the cultural sociosphere in a manner similar to the contagious behavior of a virus.
_______________
mimesis
Mimesis (μίμησις from μιμεîσθαι) in its simplest context means imitation or representation in Greek. However, the term is used in philosophical contexts in modern languages, in a quite particular way, requiring some explanation...

from the Wiki, of course.


I agree on both fronts - the language is really opaque, but it's a worthwhile debate and where can we do this if not on arcinect?!?!?

ps i think SPELLING BEE CHAMPION was more a joke than a real criticism...

Aug 21, 08 12:11 pm  · 
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Apurimac

LOL @ per!

You are good for something per, sometimes your jokes work.

Aug 21, 08 12:12 pm  · 
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conormac

Liberty, i think unconsciousness can be deliberate, i feel like that what was meant - you can deliberate others' unconscious, and your own past unconscious behavior, and the unconsciousness of an object at least... right?

Aug 21, 08 12:15 pm  · 
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vado retro

the best architecture is diegetic...

Aug 21, 08 12:41 pm  · 
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zoolander

Gobbly gobbly gook.

Architecture should have meaning.

Architecture is for the people, its should be placed high on a shelf for 'intellectual types'

Aug 21, 08 12:46 pm  · 
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conormac

diegetic - nice :)

I would suggest the best architecture could include extradiegetic possibilities, even

Aug 21, 08 12:58 pm  · 
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liberty bell

I guess you can ponder (deliberate) unconsciousness, because you can't really experience it in-the-moment, right?

But you can't be intentionally (deliberately) unconscious, right? As soon as one sets out to do something without thinking, they're thinking about how they're not thinking therefore are thinking.

Three things:
1. My comment sounds like the Psych 101 class at Stoner High School
2. Am I using i.e. correctly?
3. I have to go look up "diagetic" now.

Aug 21, 08 3:00 pm  · 
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You know "immaculate conception of art" actually means art conceived free of original sin, which, in and of itself, is a hilarious idea.

Aug 21, 08 3:37 pm  · 
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vado retro

the concerns of ordinary people are overrated...

Aug 21, 08 5:04 pm  · 
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Emilio

I can't get past the first line: "i am quite surprised by the many here who have undermined eisenman's influence." his influence (in architecture) is (or has been) his influence and is not going to be much undermined by anything said at Archinect.

Aug 21, 08 5:11 pm  · 
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fays.panda

Im confused

Aug 21, 08 5:14 pm  · 
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no one should ever be chastised for using vocabulary correctly. if the words are real, they're worth using - even with non-architects. no reason to dumb down the world any more than it already is.

there is also no reason that architects can't talk things out among themselves a little differently than we would talk to non-architects. OF COURSE you aren't going to sell a project using 'diegetic' or 'noumenon', but if using that kind of analytical language to describe something you're trying to achieve helps you to figure out a way to approach it, go for it!

just because you don't understand the meaning of a word doesn't mean it doesn't HAVE meaning, only that you're ignorant of its meaning.

if someone uses a $10 word incorrectly for effect, all bets are off. pile on!

Aug 21, 08 5:35 pm  · 
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chatter of clouds

Emilio: "I can't get past the first line: "i am quite surprised by the many here who have undermined eisenman's influence." his influence (in architecture) is (or has been) his influence and is not going to be much undermined by anything said at Archinect."

i am surprised that you are surprised as i've read very recent posts that disparage eisenman's role/influence in the vein of les jocks above.

libery bill: rem represents architecture as a field of effects rather than as an object in itself..architecture in itself is irrelevant as such ... whereas eisenman exaggerated this objectness..architecture becomes its own undoing (with its limited objectness). one exaggerates the awareness of architecture (as object) where the other knowingly chooses to subvert objectness. Call it deliberated unconsciousness or blindness, neither unconsciousness nor blindness are equivalent to a simple functional lack of consciousness or sight...they are their own worlds. Peter and Rem, a necesary fork inherent in modernist architecture. Autism: No I meant to say autism. An intelligence (autistic savant) that cannot extend beyond its own solipsism (ie objectness). like a person counting their fingers over and over again..they can never get over the countable objectness of their fingers.


now i wonder, why do people choose to lash out if they, very simply, didn't understand. is this to mean that the witch would not have been burnt had she used a common convention, an outraged convention?

file:"I mean, really ... could more than 1/10 of 1% of the general public understand even a smidgen of this conversation ... much less some of the vocabulary? And, if they could, would it be relevant to their lives?"

What relevance does your query have to mine?

Aug 21, 08 6:38 pm  · 
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chatter of clouds

shock me; if white was the immaculate colour choice of modernist architecture...thats only an aestehtic that shares the same bedrock with eugenics. persil and stains, virgin and whore, both sides of the coin.

Aug 21, 08 6:57 pm  · 
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vado retro

perhaps the general public should turn off the freaking tv and read a freaking book...

Aug 21, 08 7:02 pm  · 
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There are three other compositional factors within Masolino's painting that emphasize the column. First, the column stands just left of center and creates a slight imbalance. If the column were centered and the picture balanced, no further issue would be made. The off-centeredness of the column, however, catches the eye. Second, the column is the only major element of the painting that is shown complete, unobstructed, and uncropped. The column is in full view, whereas Gabriel's wings and Mary's cloak are not shown in their entirety. Third, as much as Gabriel's and Mary's gazes are aimed at each other, their gazes also appear to be aimed at the column. Furthermore, Gabriel and Mary look as if they are actually paying homage to the column.

As the above examples demonstrate, Masolino skillfully focuses the entire painting towards the column. Tradition alone is no longer a satisfactory explanation for the column's presence. Deeper questions arise. Why is a single column granted so much attention, and what meaning could it possibly represent, in a painting that portrays the Annunciation?

The story of the Annunciation, and hence the subject matter of Annunciation paintings, comes from the Gospel of St. Luke (1:26-38). The angel Gabriel comes to Mary as a representative of God. Gabriel tells Mary that she will conceive in her womb and bring forth a son. The son shall be great and of paramount lineage. Since Mary is a virgin, the words of the angel confuse her. The angel explains that her conception shall be a divine miracle, just as her relative Elizabeth's recent conception was also a divine miracle. Upon this explanation, Mary pronounces that she will serve and assist God, and accepts what the angel has told her. The angel then leaves.

The moment of Mary's compliance with Gabriel's message, when she proclaims herself as "handmaiden of the Lord," is exactly when the Incarnation takes place. It is at this point that "the Word was made flesh..." (John 1:14). The Annunciation and the Incarnation represent both sides of a turning point event. The Annunciation is the very last moment of the separation between God and humanity; a separation that began with the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. The Incarnation, on the other hand, is the very first moment of the reunion of God and humanity. Viewed in this light, Masolino's Annunciation, and all Annunciation paintings for that matter, depict the last moment of separation between God and humanity; the moment immediately before the human conception of Jesus Christ.
--Lauf, 1995

or

Aug 21, 08 7:07 pm  · 
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dia

It is my firm opinion that Eisenman is the most influential American architect of the last half of the 20th century.

Aug 21, 08 7:09 pm  · 
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vado retro

i hope the immaculate conception is destyl born...get it? destylbor...oh never mind...

Aug 21, 08 7:11 pm  · 
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Emilio

"disparage" is a better word for it, as is "downplay" or "belittle": then I would agree. Undermine suggests a physical action that physcially brings down the whole edifice, and I doubt that these threads will do any such thing to P.E. and his influence.

Aug 21, 08 7:15 pm  · 
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evilplatypus

I read about as vorociously as anyone; Philosphy, art history, politics, science - and I still find the vocabulary above, even when used correctly, still makes no sense because it's assuming qualities to exist that dont - noumenon for example - is just a word to describe shit thats not real, only abstract concept. People like to dive in and wallow around like filthy piglets on a hot day with this stuff but its dangerous. It messes you up and if left unchecked it rots societies from the educated outward. LB was right - this is stoner talk. I got friends who still talk like this and havent worked since college. The realm of the philosphers and goofy nut archi-theorists is the anti-reality they construct to give THEIR world purpose, a complex langauge built to give credit to their lingaul constructs - what are they afraid of? Work?

Aug 21, 08 7:16 pm  · 
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Emilio

"does/did not peter embody an autistic hyper awareness of the objectness of architecture"

why don't you just ask him and be done with it?

Aug 21, 08 7:17 pm  · 
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chatter of clouds

conormac: "noumena
The noumenon (plural: noumena) classically refers to an object of human inquiry, understanding or cognition. It is an object as it is in itself independent of the mind.[1]"

this definition lacks the crucial etymological relation to "nous" (greek: mind). that is to say that-which-is-thought. kant, i infer from schopenhauer,corrupts the nuance of thought and underlines, however, the opacity of thingness (thing-in-itself). therefore, what i meant was that eisenman illustrates the schism between the closed referential system of structure and the open system of noumena that works by metaphor, analogies, similarities, associations. the closed conventional syntax of structure (beam, colum, floor plate) becomes disrupted by unconventional strategies that could only proceed though some sort of association before they too become conventional.

Aug 21, 08 7:25 pm  · 
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chatter of clouds

therefore, in effect, eisenman heightens the awareness of architecture's objectness by subverting the originary instance of its objectness. architectural structure will always be a complete opaqueness clothed with a virtual film of possibility (the possibility pf being displaced then displaced again) for eisenman. thats quite sad i think, on the hunt for the object by attempting to kill it over and over again.

Aug 21, 08 7:30 pm  · 
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citizen

Smart people can discuss complex topics in a clear way. Jargon is the refuge of the insecure.

Aug 21, 08 7:36 pm  · 
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FASTER THAN THE SPEED OF BEEF

Infer Kant from Schopenhauer? Why not just read Kant?

Oh, wait a minute ... I get it.


Aug 21, 08 7:52 pm  · 
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I agree with diabase - Eisenman is perhaps the America's best contribution to architecture better so that he's built little. And evil got it right too (granted it really pains me to agree) that much of this talk can unfortunately elevate architecture beyond where it should be ie. Liberty B for everyone. Noctilucent, you are right for about 70% of what you typed above - its failure is the epistemology of it all. It is non-original, thus is not an opinion but regurtitated archi-babble. Sorry mate.

PE is criticised so, because despite brilliantly weaving theory with practice he fails on the delivery of the final act. His buildings although meant to be a transition from more practical interpretations (classicism,modernism et al) seem like a blank slate. But he's had sometime away (a decade or two) to think about his mistakes and his latest projects will likely change alot of minds and reinforce the talent you obviously believes he has beyond the literary pages

Aug 21, 08 8:10 pm  · 
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Carl Douglas (agfa8x)

this is a topic that really interests me, and i'd like to discuss it - but it's a bit hostile in here!

Aug 21, 08 8:21 pm  · 
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ep: ...assuming qualities to exist that dont...

noumenon: It is an object as it is in itself independent of the mind.

it's not jargon if it describes something that otherwise must be understood with many more words than one.


It messes you up and if left unchecked it rots societies from the educated outward.

are you serious?! just because you got friends who have taken a path of which you don't approve doesn't mean it has to do with the language they use. i'd like to see the logic that adds up to the 'therefore' that can get you from their vocabulary their unemployment. you know, i bet there are people out there who use this vocabulary and also work, ep.

i enjoy reading architectural theory because it helps me think beyond what i might think about by myself. it helps me grow both my vocabulary and my understanding of how real things (like architecture) get translated into different, less tangible, things by our brains.

...and the fact that these translations are not only real but MEAN SOMETHING causes our brains to make emotional connections and memories.

it's irresponsible to take refuge in jargon-filled rhetoric and forget that it's a means to an end, but it's just as irresponsible to say that what can be learned through the exploration of theory is unimportant.

Aug 21, 08 8:27 pm  · 
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holz.box

pppsssssssssssshhhhhhhhhhhhhhtt..

[/eisenman]

Aug 21, 08 11:55 pm  · 
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evilplatypus

Steve - its just words for words' sake - dont fool yourself

Aug 22, 08 1:40 am  · 
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evilplatypus

architecture is never made from words - they have no mass

Aug 22, 08 1:41 am  · 
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nb072

why are so many people here so hostile to intellectualizing architecture?

architecture CAN just be a craft or a trade or an aesthetic art. perhaps that is truly the heart of architecture.

but it can also be intellectualized. seen as part of a continuum with other humanities disciplines and an important part of our high culture. if people want to do do this, let them. it definitely makes our profession more interesting. those who don't want to intellectualize: move on to the next thread and don't ruin the theory party here.

Aug 22, 08 2:17 am  · 
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Helsinki

ep:"The realm of the philosphers and goofy nut archi-theorists is the anti-reality they construct to give THEIR world purpose, a complex langauge built to give credit to their lingaul constructs - what are they afraid of? Work?"

I couldn't agree more. Most of all that is intellectual wanking.

anyway... Steven Ward is also right, in most cases we work by intuition (the no-nonsense. "superpragmatic". post-critical, and thoroughly diagrammed approaches to creating architecture are as much smokescreens as jargon filled archi-babble) - and have to find ways to define, even to ourselves, the design process - so we can better evaluate what we do, find meaning in what others have done and see new possibilities for moving forward / enjoying our surroundings. Exact language is needed, but when discussing things, keeping things as simple as possible is a skill worth having - superfluous "exact" language just bogs people down. And makes them angry.

Aug 22, 08 2:35 am  · 
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dlb

"architecture is never made from words - they have no mass" -

actually, on a pragmatic level, words have all the mass of a lawsuit and the force of an insurance payout. for the profession of architects, architecture is made from words, as your specifications and your drawings are legal documents. architects don't build, or make architecture - they describe or notate it.

Aug 22, 08 3:44 am  · 
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b3tadine[sutures]

meh, PE does what PE does, what do you do? i too, like Nicholas, believe this to be a joke. i mean PE writes this way, but can you imagine him talking this way? now, that is not to say that there is no value in working through PE to find yourself, but if you are going to parrot him and spit out the same thing - read: wolf in sheep's clothing - then whooppee frigging do.

i am reading hejduk, bakhtin and his analysis of rabelais - Rabelais and His World and then Dialogic Imagination, hopefully with some difficulty no-less, i can stumble through these and learn something.

Aug 22, 08 5:23 am  · 
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