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The Architecture Thread - Page 76

post #1126 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by StorGladStång View Post
Can someone talk about Livio Vacchini, where does he fit in and so forth. I came across this site earlier today and what he does just floors me (as a spectator).

All these labels being bandied about are just that. They are attempts to "define" (esp. by journalists/critics/curators) a variety of work by some perceived or prescribed association, and by lumping various work under some kind of over-arching rhetoric. These attempts are often just not true, or are at best a surface definition, and are often refuted by the practitioners themselves.

The "definitions" of Post-Modernism and Deconstructivism posted here are examples: fairly superficial, fairly exclusionary, and quite general. I realize those are distillations, but nonetheless.... These things get messy, and to try to make them clean is not really the point nor is it necessary. These definitions will doubtless all be revised 100 years from now, and again. Hence I agree more with mordecai's statements here, which I find less prescriptive.

Livio Vacchini is an extremely talented Swiss architect.
(Who will then be labelled as a "Post-War Neo-Rationalist Critical Regionalist of the Ticino School", if that helps clarify his work any. )
post #1127 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by StephenHero View Post
The most important Critical Regionalist building is Rafael Moneo's Museum of Roman Art. It almost single-handedly ended post-modernism.


Come on. Please. It's an incredible building, but I think that's going a bit too far.
post #1128 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
No, the two single greatest contributions were demographic growth (both rapid urbanization and rising birthrate) and the destruction wrought by the war.
I can assure you that you are wrong. The recipe for shitty architecture is a $3/gallon gas tax and a middle class wage for your concrete truck driver. The problem in Europe still exists despite the declined birthrate. It's a very fundamental tradeoff for higher wages and energy conservation. You simply don't know what you're talking about. I've worked in Paris and I'm familiar with the building costs associated with new construction today. An architecture of "couture" quality and ornamental characteristic is completely incompatible with the political structure of most European countries. Beyond that, it's not worth hashing out. Go to wikipedia and look up "postmodern architecture" if you want to finally learn what it means before you start to assert your knowledge.
post #1129 of 3595
Jesus shut up you Canadian dickhole.
post #1130 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by venessian View Post
Come on. Please. It's an incredible building, but I think that's going a bit too far.
That statement came straight from Robert Stern's mouth and I largely agree. Since that building, there has been little to no emphasis on or support of the semiotic value of historical architecture UNLESS it was associated with the phenomenological characteristics and grandeur of the classical inspirations.
post #1131 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by StephenHero View Post
I can assure you that you are wrong. The recipe for shitty architecture is a $3/gallon gas tax and a middle class wage for your concrete truck driver. The problem in Europe still exists despite the declined birthrate. It's a very fundamental tradeoff for higher wages and energy conservation. You simply don't know what you're talking about. I've worked in Paris and I'm familiar with the building costs associated with new construction today. An architecture of "couture" quality and ornamental characteristic is completely incompatible with the political structure of most European counties.
Hmm, the price of gas in France rose 2% each year between 1947 and 1967, while rising wages were offset by an explosion of GDP and Bretton Woods monetary aid from the US which was invested in public works (like, uh, urban housing developments in the Paris suburbs).

Quote:
Beyond that, it's not worth hashing out. Go to wikipedia and look up "postmodern architecture" if you want to finally learn what it means before you start to assert your knowledge.
I asked you to explain a concept and you replied with incomprehensible jargon. That makes you a shitty teacher, but that's about it.
post #1132 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
Hmm, the price of gas in France rose 2% each year between 1947 and 1967, while rising wages were offset by an explosion of GDP and Bretton Woods monetary aid from the US which was invested in public works (like, uh, urban housing developments in the Paris suburbs).
How convenient it was of you to stop tracking energy and labor costs until 1968 in France. I'm not debating with you. I'm simply telling you from experience. Quality architecture across a wide breadth of societal income levels is dependent on cheap fuel and cheap labor, neither of which Europe or America provided from the late 60's to early 80's and it's no coincidence that the results are unspectacular. The building costs in France, isolated by construction type were roughly 150-175% of the cost in the US per square foot when I worked there.
post #1133 of 3595
I don't disagree with that. The postwar building boom ended in the early 70s, which is why post-1960s prices are not relevant. However, nearly ALL of the brutalist/modernist public housing projects in Europe were built in the 50s and 60s, so why price (when costs were relatively low and money was abundant) should have been the primary influence over architectural style during this period is beyond me. As a matter of curiosity, did your costs include the price of land in Paris, or were they additional to it?
post #1134 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
It is disingenuous to lump constructions like Pruitt-Igoe and the Bradbury building together.
Nobody here has done that but you, though to what end I still don't comprehend.

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Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
I take it you have never been to Montparnasse, then. It the worst-designed city space in all of Paris, imo, and the building itself is an affront to the senses in its environmental context. To add insult to injury, half of its units are empty.
Well, every epoch produces successes and failures, not just Modernism.

Quote:
Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
I see. Your explanation was good, though considering that the Stata Center doesn't even fulfill the basic need of keeping water out or letting in natural light via the interior courtyards, I would say that rather than creating spaces adapted to new living patterns at least some of these attempts fail to even meet the fundamental requirements of the architect's profession.
Ah, the "modern architecture leaks" argument....

Quote:
Originally Posted by StephenHero View Post
I can assure you that you are wrong. The recipe for shitty architecture is a $3/gallon gas tax and a middle class wage for your concrete truck driver.
What about shitty architects, shitty clients, shitty contractors, shitty planning boards, shitty etc?

Quote:
Originally Posted by StephenHero View Post
That statement came straight from Robert Stern's mouth and I largely agree. Since that building, there has been little to no emphasis on or support of the semiotic value of historical architecture UNLESS it was associated with the phenomenological characteristics and grandeur of the classical inspirations.
Well, Bob might be part right all of the time, and he might be all right part of the time, but he sure ain't all right all of the time....

Strange that Bob would state that, so unequivocally, because I'm pretty sure Bob has been to Exeter Library.
post #1135 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
However, nearly ALL of the brutalist/modernist public housing projects in Europe were built in the 50s and 60s, so why price (when costs were relatively low and money was abundant) should have been the primary influence over architectural style during this period is beyond me.
There have been significant public housing developments since the 60's. In fact it wouldn't surprise me if the majority are from after that period. The reasoning for those design choices in the 50's and 60's can partially be attributed to the political ideology of brutalist and modernist design. The public housing contracts and design influence were going through LeCorbusier and the Bauhaus members, and the plasticity of concrete was a defining element of the urban planning schemes they championed. Concrete was seen as a non-hierarchical material in relation to class. The dissolution of the class structure was one of the main tenets of their schemes. An international architecture in concrete afforded the same level of living standards to all members of society and oppressed any inclination for members of society to assert their superiority or individuality with more luxurious materials.
Quote:
Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
As a matter of curiosity, did your costs include the price of land in Paris, or were they additional to it?
Yes. All the projects I worked on were public projects with land allotted from previous projects that had been torn down: a fire station, two housing developments, a park, and a theatre.
post #1136 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by venessian View Post
Nobody here has done that but you, though to what end I still don't comprehend.
Er no, it was mordecai who tried to make some sort of equivalence between George Wyman and the Bauhaus.
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post #1137 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
Er no, it was mordecai who tried to make some sort of equivalence between George Wyman and the Bauhaus.
[/quote]
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Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
Modernist architecture is so breathtakingly dull and unimaginative. Geometric heaps of steel, glass, and reinforced concrete piled together like fallen shipping containers. I don't know how this awful trend was resuscitated after thirty years, but I wish it would go away again.
Sigh. One point is that the structures built by these architects, loosely defined as Modernist, were part of a formal and cultural trajectory. They were not imposed on a public that had no use for them, though perhaps the shelf life on that use was much shorter with some forms than it was for others. All of the architects I mentioned are part of that trajectory. You make arguments that seem dismissive to a century of evolving forms, but when pushed further claim that you were obviously just referring to International Style, or brutalism, or whatever.
post #1138 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by venessian View Post
Strange that Bob would state that, so unequivocally, because I'm pretty sure Bob has been to Exeter Library.

Post Modernism didn't really get its engine revved up until after that building, but in retrospect it's definitely a much stronger argument now than it was when it was finished. One of my old professors worked in Kahn's firm and he used to talk about how Kahn became discouraged because of how marginalized he felt he was becoming within the academic community in the final decade of his life.
post #1139 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by mordecai View Post
This holds if you jump from Gothic Revival and Eastlake Victorians to Rem Koolhaus. Less so if you include Burnham & Root, Greene & Greene, Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, George Wyman, John Parkinson, and Walter Gropius. Focusing specifically on the Le Corbusier residential space craft concept in order to dismiss Modernism as wholly ahistorical is inaccurate. Many of the forms that emerged from it are unfortunate, but so were many of the forms that were replaced.
Quote:
Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
Er no, it was mordecai who tried to make some sort of equivalence between George Wyman and the Bauhaus.
Equivalence? I didn't read that into his statement. Evolution, perhaps. I read that mordecai was arguing that there is a continuum over time, that developments/modifications occur, naturally; and I believe he was addressing subtle changes that occur when one looks at the reality of years passing, rather than jumping entire epochs. I see no mention of Pruitt-Igoe (Yamasaki) there.
post #1140 of 3595
Quote:
Originally Posted by StephenHero View Post
There have been significant public housing developments since the 60's. In fact it wouldn't surprise me if the majority are from after that period. The reasoning for those design choices in the 50's and 60's can partially be attributed to the political ideology of brutalist and modernist design. The public housing contracts and design influence were going through LeCorbusier and the Bauhaus members, and the plasticity of concrete was a defining element of the urban planning schemes they championed. Concrete was seen as a non-hierarchical material in relation to class. The dissolution of the class structure was one of the main tenets of their schemes. An international architecture in concrete afforded the same level of living standards to all members of society and oppressed any inclination for members of society to assert their superiority or individuality with more luxurious materials.
Unfortunately, these architects and planners didn't understand that within one generation their projects would breed social outcasts and violent gangs. Newer HLM construction is thankfully more attuned to the needs to integrate the suburbs into the city rather than create concrete dormitories. There was an excellent exhibit about this issue at the Cité de l'architecture et du patrimoine last year.
Quote:
Yes. All the projects I worked on were public projects with land allotted from previous projects that had been torn down: a fire station, two housing developments, a park, and a theatre.
I'm sorry this response is ambiguous. Do you mean that the prices were high because they included the cost of land in Paris (which is the most expensive in the world), or were the figures you quoted only for costs that were above and beyond the cost of land?
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