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Reyner Banham and Rem Koolhaas, Critical Thinking

Reyner Banham and Rem Koolhaas, Critical Thinking

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Published by: Asa Darmatriaji on Mar 05, 2011
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06/01/2013

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Reyner BanhamReyner BanhamReyner BanhamReyner Banham
A person who challenges the ideal of 1
st
, 2
nd
, 3rd machine ageHaving a glance back to the 1
st
machine age which occurred approx. in 1900-1950’s was known of itspredecessor, Adoolf Loos, father of all European platitudes, he pleads Ornament is Crime, within this is theage of Capitalism power and in the same time reduction from machine scale which was enormous to humanscale. Its first notion of building example from Walter Gropius and Adolf Meyer, Fagus Factory in1911-1913,Bauhaus Dessau, Weimar, and Berlin in about 1925-1933; Le Corbusier with his Villa Savoye in1928-1931which he expressed a pavilion or villa which was influenced by Amede Ozenfant, purism painter’s; Van NelleFactory in 1925-1931 by Johanes Brinkman and Leendert Van Der Vlugt, Schroeder house in 1924 by GerritRietveld. It was the era of form follow function slogan, international style for the end product of built form,futuristic movement, streamline design, design of everyday life objects. Therefore the 1
st
machine age was anotion which typified the work of most of European architects which cultivated and predominantly as‘machine’ of everyday life. While the 2
nd
machine age (1950-1960’s) was characterized with the age of domestic electronic and chemistry for wealthy customers, Motorola TV, and also cinema was open forpublic. It was the age of common technology for everyone and its famous slogan ‘I shop therefore I am’, inthe same time it was a shift and altered to a new paradigm of the ‘desire and needs' toward the product’rather than its functionality. For example, Eames chair and Ottoman in 1956, Braun Radio in 1955, CitroenDS19 in 1962 were often strived for the beauty, seductive, and desirable characteristic. In certain continuity,it doesn’t supersede the previous notion, but rather display’s it. Within the period of time in 1950’s and1960’s the emerging movement of new independent group of artists or architects, they introduced manculture into debate of a higher culture, in 1955, man, machine, photograph exhibition, and the immense of companies which promoting a product toward desire has been the main notion. The idea of miniaturization,mass consumer culture, branding identifies the product subconscious buying, packaging for selling andmedia as a new theory. Moving forward to the 3
rd
machine age from 1960’s to 1990’s, high hierarchicalsociety, movement from object to event and situations, slogan ‘to worries at and to be there at’, Archigrammovement which steered by Ron Herron, Peter Cook, Michael Webb, in 1970’s and 1980’s the outcome of personal stereo created personalization electronic nomads as the invisible gadget. Whilst in architecturaltheory was questioned by Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown with Complexity and Contradiction inArchitecture, Learning From Las Vegas from both Reyner Banham, Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown,it was in idea to reassessed the symbolism of form and promoting the symbolism space over the form spaceand architecture was shifted toward pop culture.The industrial design was altered beyond its recognition on 1950’s -1960’s , this was what Banham pleadsthat the architects possessed to design all non-structural equipments, lighting, chair, and so forth. Thearchitect’s role has been influenced in terms of furniture design more than the regular customer of itself.Within the same time period, development idea of built-in furniture has been desirable for most of architectsas another solution to keep the integrity of the design as Le Corbusier promoted. The occurrence of appliances such as fridge, washing machine; brand image known out as a virus to the public realm forexample British railways, Citroen, Detroit city as a center of American’s automobile industry, festival of Britainwhich they presumed that the public taste it is not improved, yet their taste its more sophisticated, Italian‘Olivetti’ typewriter, and many other industries are started to recognized with their distinct style as they usedsymbol as their identity. Banham known as the author of the first machine age theory and design in 1960’sand Learning from Las Vegas in 1971, and also Architecture of Four Ecologies (Sufurbia, Foothills, The Plainsof ID, Autopia) and he was a member of post modernism resistance group. He was also an architecturaltheorist and prolific architectural critic and writer. He stated that modernism has to be criticized andevaluated; he argued to what Venturi’s emphasized, known as observation of form as an end and not
 
theorizes them in the sense of actuality. Banham exemplified his method of searching and observing whichwas quite peculiar, by having the example, video of Banham loves LA on pair of eyes, he performed to enjoythe richness and diversity, which he promoted it gives a polymorphous architecture example of opennessand inclusiveness, which in the end the architecture spatial quality distinguish over the representation of painting and sculpture. It is a contrary method to what Venturi’s did, learning from Las Vegas, formlessnessand tastelessness is to challenge the orthodoxies and revoke in the sense of possibilities. Venturi hasmentioned that bicycle shed is a building, Lincoln cathedral is an architecture piece. The comparativemethod of what Venturi and Denise Scott Brown’s did to analyze that Guild House characteristic such as itlooks cheap, it has architectural meaning, it is boring, it is denotative symbol, it is applied ornament, symbolicornament, decoration by attaching the superficial elements, form of symbolism, it is a representational artand evocative architecture, societal message, propaganda, mixture of high and low art, evolutionary usinghistorical precedent, and it is the representation of an old and ordinary words with new meanings. In itscontrary they analyzed that Crawford Manor by Paul Rudolph characterized with its expensive appearance, itis form of expression, connotative symbol, integral expressionism, expressive ornaments, the articulation of integrated elements, it is form of abstraction, abstract expressionism, innovative architecture with its contentand articulation, it is the representation of high art, revolutionary and progressive movement over traditionalarchitecture or anti traditional, it is form of new words and extra ordinary. Banham rather pleads towarddesire design, relooking Vietnam war as a reference of thinking, and hippies movement. However reformist orradical his point of view, he never loses his faith in modernism ‘form in space’. In 1962, his essay towardspop architecture, he found that the relevant of pop aesthetic and ethic in architectural industry, but it needsexploration and adjustment to social life. Pop arts almost conceived without the mechanization and massproduction, it is begun to question the pop taste, in terms of context and content in architectural quality, itwas a breakthrough and success for a kind of sensibility. He described, connection between architectureand painting, it might be true for Renaissance but not for all, architecture deals with property therefore a lotof new branch of commerce, architecture might be involved in its own way, architecture at some point has toaddress financial structure and common enterprises included with gadgets, which in the same time evoke anew question of where to draw the line between pop and architecture itself.In 1965, Banham collaborated with Francois Dallegret whose worked are immense visualizing clear andconcise for example transportable standard, anatomy of dwelling, trailmaster to transcontinental, supercoupe the long weekendwhich evoke that a house determined by its services and an anti house is whereabsolute functionality clear away all thoughts of symbolic fulfillment. It is the logical conclusion to Americantradition that doesn’t bother on the question of aesthetic or style. When a house comprises of pipes, flues,ducting, wires, inlets, outlets, oven conduits, refuse disposers, hi-fi reverberators, antenna, and so manyservices that could stand by itself without any assistance from the house and half of the cost mostly tacklefor these purposes. The 1
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mechanical service is still to new for the slogan ‘form follow function’, accusez lastructure, firmness commodity and delight, truth to material, wenig ist mehr or less is more. The closeststand point was Le Corbusier ‘Pour Ledoux C’etait Facile-Pas De Tubes’ which has stand for the profoundnostalgia for the golden age before piping set in. The emergent of services into a house was derived from theAmerican obsession with cleanliness and it moved toward the psychological motive that people had tobreathe, in 1904, Konrad Meier stated in heating and ventilating the excessive amounts of water vapor, sicklyodor from respiratory organs, unclean teeth perspiration, untidy clothing, the presence of microbes due tovarious conditions, stuffy air from dust carpets cause greater discomfort. In relation to house and its service,Groff Cronklin wrote that in ‘Weather Conditioned House’, the definition of a house is nothing but a hollowshell; shell is all a house or any structure in which human beings live and work. Here we can presume that asingle volume that has to be lighted and heated was strived from American obsession, and the cubicularinteriors is from European. Relooking back to Franklin stove, Kerosene Lamp, the American interiors has tobe better serviced and it was to support the civilized structure. Banham pleads that a house constructed by
 
its services is hard to differ between structure and its services, for example Louis Kahn Laboratory building.The monumental space in America is porch and terrace; they have never established the creation of monumental space in Europe which characterized with large spaces. Therefore the mobile home wasanother solution for American’s which also obsessed with outdoor and lack of architectural solution,standard of living package such as lighting, ice cube maker, and they prefer on spending for services ratherthan the permanent structure, which leads us toward a clear distinction that a housing has its service core.Banham presumed that the growth of electronic gadgets with American culture it is improving the situationsby means of crafty and compact, and it also provoke the consideration of human comfort. For example fromlog homes to mill cut timber by the easy ordering of nails, Coca Cola machines in Latin America and Arabwas misplaced, because it was not the native culture, Montreal and Boston would have died or went down if the gizmo’s was out, it was the life if catalogue, which you can choose what you want. In the same time theimportant notion of this period 1960’s onward was that the American domestic architecture has beendeveloped very well in terms of its services.
Rem KoolhaasRem KoolhaasRem KoolhaasRem Koolhaas
New form of architecture in 20
th
centuryRem Koolhaas is a theorist, architect, journalist, and work connected with sociology, historical terms, and heis one of the most wired man in the world, member of post modernism of resistance, relating to his essay,Junkspace, which he described as a residue of mankind lived on the planet, it is a product of modernization,it was a result of the architecture inability to explain space and preoccupation of architecture, It has broughtus to rethink of its individual part, its continuity, in terms of invention, expansion, the end product, the newenlightenment, the seamlessness, and new infrastructures that could accommodate the dynamic growth of the world toward both developments in terms of physical and non-physical creation. Rem Koolhas wasconcerned about the state of this century which has loosed the battle with the issue of quantity, theurbanism has been unable to invent and implement in the scale demanded apocalyptic demographics, forexample the fluctuation in Lagos from 2 to 7 million people, and it was grown from 12 to 15 million people,Istanbul from 6 to 12 million people, China even more staggering multiplication and in the same timeurbanism has disappeared at the moment when urbanization was happened everywhere by its constantacceleration. Like in the modern age that we could see the failure of modernism has always faced the sameissue of quantity which in the end it was a question of quality and in its abstraction it was repeating the failureof political power, creative movement, logistically, and also the aesthetic are finished due to its tendency loseto computer, it emphasized that the urbanism has to be modified to urge the demanded world of newness.Rem Koolhaas as the author of Delirious New York, S.M.L.X.L, and many other publications with severaluniversities, like his affiliation with A.A. School London, Harvard graduate student, he often demonstrated theact of mixture of OMA which run the architecture, modernization, typology, diagram, office, ideology, whichserving a purpose for a new shift in architecture, and in the other hand, AMO run for the content,globalization issues, identity, logo or symbols, it is a network based investigation, all the efforts to prevail theissue of the city that has failed to run as it supposed to and mere functioned as an instant virtual world, whilehaving the media as the powerful device to represent information, and in the end he promoted the idea of architecture should make people experience the reality, and it is more than the act of doing something.Revert back to what Rem Koolhaas considered that the building has more relation with its programme for itsactuality and current context and content and he pleads that what building can do in the future, it wasbeyond measurement and code, it demonstrates to organized somewhat is real to unreal and it pretends to

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