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Noles avound lIe BoppIev EJJecl and OlIev Moods oJ Modevnisn

AulIov|s)· BoIevl SonoI and SavaI WIiling
Souvce· Fevspecla, VoI. 33, Mining Aulonon¸ |2002), pp. 72-77
FuIIisIed I¸· TIe MIT Fvess on IeIaIJ oJ Fevspecla.
SlaIIe UBL· http://www.jstor.org/stable/1567298
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72 / SOMOL & WHITING
No matter how
often
I tell
myself
that chance
happenings of
thiA kind
occurfar
more
often
than we
suspect,
since we all move, one
after
the
other,
along
the same
roads
mapped
out
offor
us
by
our
origins
and our
hopes, my
rational mind is
nonetheless unable to
lay
the
ghosts of repetition
that haunt me with ever
greater
frequency. Scarcely
am I in
company
but it seemn as
if
I had
already
heard the
same
opinions expressed by
the same
people
somewhere or
other,
in the same
way,
with the same
worda,
turns
of phrase
and
gestures
...
Perhaps
there is in this as
yet unexplained phenomenon of apparent duplication
some kind
of anticipation
of
the end,
a venture into the void,
a sort
of diAengagement,
which, like a
gramophone
repeatedly playing
the same
sequence of
notes,
has les to do with
damage
to the
machine
itself
than with an
irreparable defect
in its
programme.
W.G. SEBALD, THE RINGS OF SATURN
I would like to show that these unitie
form
a number
of
autonomous,
but not
independent
domains,
governed by
rules, but in
perpetual transformation, anonymous
and without a
subject,
but
imbuing
a
great many
individual works.
MICHEL FOUCAULT, THE ARCHAEOLOGY OF KNOWLEDGE
MINING AUTONOMY / 73
FROM CRITICALTO PROJECTIVE
In
1984,
the editors of
Per,pecta,
Carol Burns and
Robert
Taylor,
set out an ambitious
agenda
for
issue 21: "Architecture is not an isolated or autono-
mous medium, it is
actively engaged by
the social,
intellectual, and visual culture which is outside
the
discipline
and which
encompasses
it ... It is
based on a
premise
that architecture is
inevitably
involved with
questions
more difficult than those
of form or
style."
While this orientation bears a
curious connection to the "realist" or
"grey"
tradi-
tion of an earlier Yale
generation,
it also serves as a
sign
of the nascent mixture of a critical, neo-Marx-
ism with a celebration of the vernacular or
everyday
with which Yale would soon become
synonymous.'
Published in that same issue, K. Michael
Hays's
canonic
essay
"Critical Architecture: Between Cul-
ture and Form" offered a useful corrective to the
editorial
position
of the issue
by indirectly imply-
ing
that the editors were
insufficiently
dialectical
in their
understanding
of
engagement
and auton-
omy. Hays's sophistication
has
always
been to rec-
ognize
that
autonomy
is a
precondition
for
engage-
ment.
Using
Mies as a
paradigm, Hays argued
for the
possibility
of a "critical architecture" that
would
operate
between the extremes of concilia-
tory commodity
and
negative commentary.
Twelve issues and seventeen
years later, the
editors of issue
33
have returned to the theme of
interdisciplinarity.
This time, however, the
topic
is
explicitly underwritten by the terms established
in
Hays's 1984 essay: "PerApecta 33
is built around
the belief that architecture stands in the critical
position
between
being
a cultural
product
and a
discrete autonomous
discipline." Yet, while
Hays
was
suggesting
that
only
critical architecture
oper-
ated in his
privileged
"between"
position,
the edi-
tors of
33 imply
that all architecture now automati-
cally occupies
a de facto critical status. What for
Hays
was then an
exceptional practice,
has now
been rendered an
everyday
fact of life. If
nothing
else, however, this inflation of critical
practice by
the editors of
33
has
perhaps unconsciously
iden-
tified a fact of the last
twenty years: namely,
that
disciplinarity
has been absorbed and exhausted
by
the
project
of
criticality.
As
Hays's
first articu-
lation of critical architecture was a
necessary
cor-
rective to the realist
position
of
Pernpecta 21, it
may
be
necessary (or, at least, useful) to
provide
an alternative to the now dominant
paradigm
of
criticality,
an alternative that will be character-
ized here as
projective.
As evidenced
by Hays's insightful polemic,
critical architecture, under the
regime
of textu-
ality, required
the condition of
being
"between"
various discursive
oppositions.
Thus "culture and
form" can
alternatively
be
figured
as "kitsch and
avant-garde" (Clement Greenberg),
"literal and
phenomenal" (Colin Rowe), "objecthood
and art"
(Michael Fried), or
"capitalist development
and
design" (Manfredo Tafuri). Within architecture,
Rowe's and Tafuri's discourses most fully enable,
if never
completely realize, the critical
project
of
"betweeness," whether within
history/theory,
as
with
Hays,
or in terms of
design,
as with the work
of Peter Eisenman.
It is from Rowe's and Tafuri's
conceptual
genetic
material that architecture's critical
proj-
ect has been formulated. For both authors, there
is a
requisite assumption
of contradiction or ambi-
guity, regardless
of whether it is subsumed or
sublated (dialectical materialism) or balanced (lib-
eral formalism). Even before
examining
the vari-
ous
reconfigurations
of Rowe and Tafuri, however,
it is
important
to
recognize
that the
opposition
between them is never as clear as would be
imag-
ined: Rowe's
ostensibly
formal
project
has
deep
connections to a
particular
liberal
politics,
and
Tafuri's
apparently engaged practice
of dialectical
critique
entails a
precise
series of formal a
prioris
as well as a
pessimistic prognosis
with
regard
to
architectural
production.
Seen in this
way,
there is
no more
political
writer than Rowe, and none more
formalist than Tafuri.
The
criticality
of
Hays
and Eisenman main-
tains the
oppositional
or dialectical framework in
the work of their mentors and
predecessors,
while
simultaneously trying
to short-circuit or blur their
terms. In their various
attempts
to
hybridize
Rowe
and Tafuri in order to fashion a critical
position,2
both
Hays
and Eisenman
rely
on dialectics - as is
immediately
evidenced in the titles of the
journals
each was responsible for founding: Oppositions
ROBERT SOMOL
SARAH WHITING
74 / SOMOL & WHITING
Right and below right
"1909 theorem: the Skyscraper
as
utopian device for the production
of unlimited numbers of virgin sites
on a single metropolitan
location."
From Rem Koolhaas,
(NY: Monacelli, 1994), p.83.
"Dom-ino house prototype.
Le Cor-
busier: Perspective." From Peter
Eisenman, "Aspects
of Modernism:
Maison Dom-ino and the Self-
Referential Sign," Oppositions 15/16.
and
AAAemblage. Despite
their
implicit critiques
of Michael Fried's aesthetics,3 both Eisenman and
Hays ultimately
fear literalism as much as Fried
does; both warn
against
the
isomorphic remap-
ping
of life and art. For both, disciplinarity
is
understood as
autonomy (enabling critique, rep-
resentation, and
signification),
but not as instru-
mentality (projection, performativity,
and
prag-
matics). One could
say
that their definition of
disciplinarity
is directed against
reification rather
then toward the
possibility
of
emergence.^
reification concerns itself with the
negativ
tion of
qualitative experience
to quantificat,
emergence promises
that serial accumulation
may
itself result in the
production
of new
qualities.
As
an alternative to the critical
project
- here linked
to the indexical, the dialectical and hot
representa-
tion
-
this text
develops
an alternative
genealogy
of the
projective
- linked to the
diagrammatic,
the
atmospheric
and cool
performance.
FROM INDEXTO DIAGRAM
In the
significant production
of both
Hays
and
Eisenman, as
parallel realignments
of Rowe and
Tafuri, the critical
project
is
inevitably mediated;
in fact, it is
perpetually
obsessed
by,
and inextrica-
bly
linked to, reproduction.'
This obsession mani-
fests itself both in
Hays's
account of Mies van der
Rohe's Barcelona Pavilion and Peter Eisenman's
rereading
of Le Corbusier's Dom-ino, where both
authors
adopt
the
technique
of the
index.5Mi"
WlRsLCLY- eLlI_m i
Il
llm with signi-
fication: in other words, it exists as a
physically
driven
sign,
one that is not
culturally
or
visually
determined, as are the
symbol
or icon. For
Hays,
Mies's architecture situates itself "between the
efficient
representation
of
preexisting
cultural
values and the
wholly
detached
autonomy
of an
abstract formal
system."
This status of
being
in
the world
yet
resistant to it is attained
by
the
way
the architectural
object materially
reflects its
specific temporal
and
spatial context, as well as
the
way
it serves as a trace of its
productive sys-
tems.
Hays
describes the Barcelona Pavilion as
'an event with
temporal duration,
whose actual
existence is
continually being produced,"
or whose
meaning
is
continually being
decided. This act of
decision is both in fact and
etymologicallythe
crit-
ical
gesture par
excellence.
In Eisenman's discussion of the Dom-ino, it
is the
design process
itself that is
being registered
rather than the material
productive
and technical
systems
or
specific
context discussed
by Hays.
In
marking
the status of its existence, in its
ability
to
function as a self-referential
sign,
the Dom-ino is
one of the first modernist and critical
gestures
in architecture: "Architecture is both substance
and act. The
sign
is a record of an intervention
-
an event and an act which
goes beyond
the
pres-
ence of elements which are
merely necessary
con-
ditions." For Eisenman and
Hays,
the Dom-ino and
Barcelona Pavilion are at once traces of an event,
indices of their
procedures
of
design
or construc-
tion, and
objects
that
potentially point
to a state of
continual transformation. In both cases, the criti-
cal forms of
self-referentiality
are demonstrated
via serial
reproductions:
be
they
Eisenman's re-
drawn axonometrics of the non-existent Dom-ino
perspective,
or the historical
photographs Hays
uses to extract the
experience
of the defunct, orig-
inal Barcelona Pavilion. Just as the architectural
artifacts are indices of a
missing process
or
prac-
tice,
the
objects
themselves are also
significantly
missing
in both cases, so that a series of
reproduc-
tions must stand in as their traces. This
process
of infinite
regress
or deferral is constitutive of the
critical architectural
project:
architecture inevita-
bly
and
centrally preoccupied by
its status as
rep-
resentation, and its simultaneous commentary
on
that condition.
As an alternative to Eisenman's reflections
on the
high European frame,
which situated the
frame within the context of the critical-indexical
project
of the
1970S,
one
might
look to Rem Kool-
s's
appropriation
of the mass cultural Amer-
frame at the same moment. As
suggested
above, Eisenman understands Le Corbusier's Dom-
ino as the trace of a transformative process,
and
in so
doing
he deviates from Rowe
by animating
the
grid. Just as the indexical
project
assumes
or invents a
particular
kind of
reading subject
for architecture, its
imagination
of architectural
movement relies on a narrative for the
grid. Thus,
although
the indexical
program
for architecture
may proceed through diagrams,
it is still tied to
a semiotic, representational
and
sequential
ambi-
..
**
.
-
.
.' l
r
,
-
,
.
3 j;
. **- _
MINING AUTONOMY / 75
tion. Koolhaas's invocation of the "cartoon-theo- notion of
interdisciplinarity,
which seeks to
legiti-
rem" from
Life magazine
-
as well as the section mize architecture
through
an external
measuring
cut from the Downtown Athletic Club
-
alterna- stick, thereby reducing
architecture to the
entirely
tively
enlists a vision of architecture as contrib-
amorphous
role of absorber of
heterogeneous
life.
uting
to the
production
and
projection
of new A
projective
architecture does not
shy away
from
forms of
collectivity.
These New York frames exist
reinstating
architectural definition, but that def-
as instruments of
metropolitan plasticity
and are inition stems from
design
and its effects rather
not
primarily
architecture for
paying
attention to; than a
language
of means and materials. The
Dop-
they
are not for
reading,
but for
seducing,
becom- pier shifts the
understanding
of
disciplinarity
ing, instigating
new events and behaviors. The as
autonomy
to
disciplinarity
as
performance
or
skyscraper-machine
allows the
projection
infi- practice. In the former, knowledge
and form are
nitely upward
of virtual worlds within this world, based on shared norms, principles,
and traditions.
and in this
way
extends Michel Foucault's reflec- In the latter, a more Foucaultian notion of disci-
tions on
heterotopias
and
prisons.
Gilles Deleuze
plinarity
is advanced in which the
discipline
is
argues
that Foucault understands
Jeremy
Ben- not a fixed datum or
entity,
but rather an active
tham's
Panopticon
not
simply
as a machine for
organism
or discursive
practice, unplanned
and
surveillance, but more
broadly
and
productively ungovernable,
like Foucault's "unities
formling]
as a
diagram
which
"imposes
a
particular
form of a number of autonomous, but not
independent
conduct on a
particular multiplicity."
Koolhaas's domains, governed by rules, but in
perpetual
investigation
of the frame structure is
diagram-
transformation."9 Rather than
looking
back or crit-
matic in the same
way. icizing
the status
quo,
the
Doppler projects
for-
From these two inventions of the frame struc- ward alternative (not necessarily oppositional)
ture in
mid-7os
architectural discourse, one can
arrangements
or scenarios.
discern two orientations toward
disciplinarity: projective
architecture does not make\a
that is, disciplinarity
as
autonomy
and
process,
claini for
expertise
outside the field of architc-
as in the case of Eisenman's
reading
of the Dom- ture nor does it limit its field of
expertise
Qw
ino, and
disciplinarity
as force and effect, as in absolute defittt aetitecture. Design
iswht
Koolhaas's
staging
of the Downtown Athletic Club.
keeps
architecture from
slippingstoa
cloud of
Moreover, these two
examples begin
to differen-
Peterogeneity.
It delineates the fluctuatinf bor-
tiate the critical
project
in architecture, with its ders of architG9's- disCe aiand expertise f
connection to the indexical, from the
projective,
So w en architects engae pic that are seem-
which
proceeds through
the
dfigram.
The
diagram ingl
outside oMciteure's historically-defined
is a tool of the
_rtualet
the sce -
questions
of economics or civic
politics,
index is the t?eWe
real.7
for example
-
they
don't
engage those topics
as
-< \ ~~ /
^^~ \^ ~ ~ \^^~
^
experts on economics or civic poltlcl
b4t,patief, )
^^?-"
'^aS~~~~s rts
on
dqilnd
how
design may
affect
h-FlO D I A L E C T I C rv-r
hOF,
F LE k c
th--Se itfter
Ratherthaen
the
oppositionars-
nsi
-attionshiptothfi/
- - ~~~~~~~~~~~~~%_
other
disciplines,
rather than as critics.
Design
encompasses object qualities (form, proportion,
materiality, composition, etc.) but it also includes
qualities
of
sensibility,
such as effect, ambiance,
and
atmosphere.
An
example
of a
projective
architecture that
engages
the
strategy
of the
Doppler
effect in lieu
of that of the dialectic is ww's IntraCenter, a
40,000
ft.2
community
center located in
Lexington,
Kentucky.
The IntraCenter's client
provided
ww
with a
program
list of
dizzying operational
hetero-
geneity: daycare,
athletic facilities, social services,
cafe, library, computer center, job training
facili-
ties, shops,
etc. Rather than
figuring
these multi-
ple programs
so as to
provide
each with its own
formal identification, or rather than
establishing
a neutral field so as to allow the
programs
to define
the
project,
the IntraCenter elides the
expected
of critical dialectics, the
projective employs
some-
thing
similar to the
Doppler
Effect
-
the
perceived
change
in the
frequency
of a wave that occurs
when the source and receiver of the wave have a
relative
velocity.
The
Doppler
Effect
explains
the
change
in
pitch
between the sound of a train as
it
approaches
and then moves
away
from the lis-
tener.8 If critical dialectics established architec-
ture's
autonomy
as a means of
defining
architec-
ture's field or
discipline,
a
Doppler
architecture
acknowledges
the
adaptive synthesis
of architec-
ture's
many contingencies.
Rather than
isolating
a
singular autonomy,
the
Doppler
focuses
upon
the
effects and
exchanges
of architecture's inherent
multiplicities: material, program, writing,
atmo-
sphere, form, technologies, economics, etc. It is
important
to underscore that this
multiplying
of
contingencies
differs
greatly
from the more dilute
Above
Projective Architecture: diagram
of overlap of A (architecture) with P (politics),
E (economics) and T (theory).
Middle
The Doppler Effect.
7
e__.
"
--PiW
76 / SOMOL & WHITING
overlap
between form and
program.
Their lack
of
alignment
leads to a
perpetual Doppler
shift
between the two. This
strategy
of non-concentric-
ity generates
other
Doppler Effects, including
the
many
reverberations
among overlapping
constit-
uencies as well as material and structural condi-
tions. The IntraCenter is
projective
rather than
critical in that it
very deliberately
sets into motion
the
possibility
of
multiple engagements
rather
than a
single
articulation of
program, technology
or form
(contemporary
architecture's commodity,
firmness and
delight).
The
Doppler
Effect shares some attributes
with
parallax, which, as Yve-Alain Bois notes,
comes from the Greek
parallaxis,
or
"change":
"the
apparent change
in the
position
of an
object
result-
ing
from the
change
in the ...
position
from which
it is viewed."10
Claiming
that Serra
consciously
responded
to the
possibilities
of
parallax,
Bois
cites as an
example
Serra's
description
of his
sculp-
ture entitled
Sight
Point: "[It seems at first]
to fall
right
to left, make an x, and
straighten
itself out
to a truncated
pyramid.
That would occur three
times as
you
walked around."1 In other words, par-
allax is the theatrical effect of a
peripatetic
view
of an
object tjs xo at ihof
tL
a
building's
material
palette
or site. As the nov-
elist W.G. Sebald
explains,
each one of us
experi-
ences moments of
repetition,
coincidence or
dupli-
cation, where echoes of other
experiences,
conver-
sations, moods and encounters affect current ones.
Such
momentary
echoes are like tracks out of
alignment, hearing
and
seeing
out of
phase
that
generate momentary deja vus, an
overlap
of real
and virtual worlds.
FROM HOT TO COOL
Someone should eAtabliAh an
anthropology of
hot and cool...
lean Baudrillard
Overall, one
might
characterize the shift from crit-
ical to
projective
modes of
disciplinarity
as a
pro-
cess of
cooling
down or, in Marshall McLuhan's
terms, of
moving
from a "hot" to a "cool" version
of the
discipline.
Critical architecture is hot in the
sense that it is
preoccupied
with
separating
itself
from normative, background
or
anonymous
condi-
tions of
production,
and with
articulating
differ-
ence. For McLuhan, hot media like film are
"high-
definition", conveying very precise
information
on one channel or in one mode.
By contrast, cool
media, such as television, are low-definition and,
since the information
they convey
is
compromised,
they require
the
participation
of the user. In this
regard,
the formalist-critical
project
is hot in its
prioritization
of definition, delineation and dis-
tinction (or medium
specificity).
One alternative,
minimalism, would be a cool art form; it is low-
definition and
requires
the context and viewer to
complete it, lacking
both
self-sufficiency
and self-
consciousness. Minimalism
explicitly requires
participation
and is related to Smithson's
promo-
tion of
entropy.
While
cooling suggests
a
process
of
mixing (and thus the
Doppler
Effect would be
one form of cool), the hot resists
through
distinc-
tion, and connotes the
overly difficult, belabored,
worked, complicated.
Cool is relaxed, easy.
This
difference between the cool and the hot
may
be
amplified by briefly examining
a medium McLu-
han does not discuss:
performance.
In his
obituary
on the actor, Dave
Hickey
writes that with Robert Mitchum
you get perfor-
mance,12 and
performance,
he
says,
not
expressed
(or represented),
but delivered. The Mitchum effect
relies on
knowing something
is back there, but
not
being
sure
exactly
what it is.
Hickey says
that
what Mitchum does, then, is
always surprising
and
plausible.
And it's
exactly
this trait of
surpris-
ing plausibility
that
might
be
adapted
as a
projec-
tive effect, one which combines the chance event
with an
expanded
realism. There are two kinds
of actors, Hickey argues.
First are some who con-
struct a character out of details and make
you
believe their character
by constructing
a narra-
tive for them. One could
say
that this is the school
of the "Method," where the actor
provides gesture
and motivation, and
supplies
a sub-text for the text
of the
script.
The second
group
of actors create
plausibility by
their bodies; Hickey says they
are
not
really acting,
but rather
"performing
with a
vengeance."
While Robert De Niro is an actor in
the first
category,
Mitchum is in the second.
In the
nineteen-eighties
and nineties, archi-
tecture's relationship
to
philosophy
was like that
of De Niro to his character. In other words, a kind
of Method
acting,
or Method
designing,
where
the architect
expressed
a text or where architec-
ture
represented
its
procedure
of formation. As
with the "critical
project,"
Method
acting
was con-
nected to
psychoanalysis,
to
calling up
and reen-
acting
memories and
past
events. In contrast, Mit-
chum, Hickey says, is,
Like Coltrane, playing
a Atandard, he iA
inveating
the text with hiA own aubversive viLion, hiA own
pace
and senAe of
dark
contingency.
So what we
Aee in a Mitchum
performance
iA less the character
portrayed
than a
propoAitional
alternative: What
if
someone with Mitchumrn
AenAibility grew up
to be
a sea
captain?
a
private eye?
a school-teacher?
13
a _ x is in
that it is not
purely optical.
Predicated on waves
that can be
auditory
or visual, the
Doppler sug-
gests
that the
optical
and
conceptual
are only
two
of
many
sensibilities.
Additionally,
it is not a read-
ing strategy
- that is, it is not
just
an
unfolding
reading
of an artwork - but an
atmospheric
inter-
action. It
foregrounds
the belief that both the
subject
and the
object carry
and
exchange
infor-
mation and
energy.
In short, a user
might
be
more attuned to certain
aspects
of a
building
than others. He or she
might
understand how the
building responds
to a formal
history
of archi-
tecture or deploys
a
specific technology
or he
or she
might
have
particular
associations with
MINING AUTONOMY / 77
re " , edited by Deborah Berke and
1997).
iisenman
misread Rowe and
;isreading as poetic influence:
tic poets
-
always proceeds by a
ton that is actually and necessarily
WF ..njfBn nfluence: A Theory of Poetry (NY: Oxford
Fried
was a trical anathema that undermined modern-
: Frei.ci.ameson's
theorization of mediation as an active
ageAi,. 'i~0ion
between two subjects or between a subject
pas..
Feen that operates as pure conciliation between
McLUt'
jnriderstanding
of mediation as mass media's
.0:hoQw:;Chitecture
can resist, rather than reflect, an external
Ha;ys:,.?i'etween
Culture and Form," Perspecta 21 (Cambridge,
e?Pet-r' Eisenman, "Aspects of Modernism: Maison Dom-ino
1'!.liOpOsitions
15/16 (Winter/Spring, 1979).
see Deleuze and Guattari: "Diagrams must be distinguished
tporial signs, but also from icons, which pertain to reter-
bols, which pertain to relative or negative deterritorialization.
:this way, an abstract machine is neither an infrastructure
t instance nor a transcendental Idea that is determining in the
plays a piloting role. The diagrammatic or abstract machine
It, even something real, but rather constructs a real that is yet
y." A Thousand Plateaus (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota
wvered by the Austrian mathematician and physicist, Christian
wledge.
.onary, "A Picturesque Stroll Around Clara-Clara,"
":'"'- m
'-' 'ambridge:
MIT Press October
ember/October 1997): 10-13.
Opposite page
IntraCenter, ww, 2001.
Form-Program Diagram 1,
IntraCenter, ww, 2001.
Left
Robert Mitchum.
.*
-i::
arios, not
psychodramas.
The
:.;.
?;:
of the
unhomely
has been
replaced
wil
:";
-'
;:rop'ositional alternative of the
untimely.
:
;
i.^
i
'
Within -ect of deli
:.f.'''
..':': ........
".
'
;
., Ot"
;'
a~e;
~'
"n.
oEA
. :ii
?:",.;,.i:i.
~;.?.:,i:::;!i':-:':v':~,...<:::,::.

but in perpetual transformation. in the same way. since we all move.. which. my rational mind is nonetheless unable to lay the ghosts of repetition that haunt me with ever greater frequency. a sort of diAengagement. W. has les to do with damage to the machine itself than with an irreparable defect in its programme.72 / SOMOL & WHITING No matter how often I tell myself that chance happenings of thiA kind occurfar more often than we suspect. SEBALD. MICHEL FOUCAULT. Scarcely am I in company but it seemn as if I had already heard the same opinions expressed by the same people somewhere or other.. anonymous and without a subject. along the same roads mapped out offor us by our origins and our hopes.G. but not independent domains. one after the other. but imbuing a great many individual works. Perhaps there is in this as yet unexplained phenomenon of apparent duplication some kind of anticipation of the end. like a gramophone repeatedly playing the same sequence of notes. turns of phrase and gestures . THE ARCHAEOLOGY OF KNOWLEDGE . governed by rules. THE RINGS OF SATURN I would like to show that these unitie form a number of autonomous. with the same worda. a venture into the void.

' Published in that same issue."Yet. while Hays was suggesting that only critical architectureoperated in his privileged "between" position. As Hays'sfirst articulation of critical architecturewas a necessary corrective to the realist position of Pernpecta21. Rowe'sand Tafuri'sdiscourses most fully enable.that disciplinarity has been absorbed and exhausted by the project of criticality. the editors of issue 33 have returned to the theme of interdisciplinarity.. required the condition of being "between" various discursive oppositions.and none more formalist than Tafuri. It is based on a premise that architecture is inevitably involvedwith questions more difficult than those of form or style. For both authors.MINING AUTONOMY / 73 ROBERT SOMOL SARAH WHITING FROM CRITICALTO PROJECTIVE In 1984. or "capitalist development and design" (Manfredo Tafuri)." While this orientation bears a curious connection to the "realist"or "grey" tradition of an earlierYalegeneration.Hays'ssophistication has always been to recognize that autonomyis a preconditionfor engagement. neo-Marxism with a celebrationof the vernacularoreveryday with which Yalewould soon become synonymous. Using Mies as a paradigm.it also serves as a sign of the nascent mixture of a critical. Twelveissues and seventeen years later.there is no morepolitical writerthan Rowe. Hays argued for the possibility of a "criticalarchitecture"that would operate between the extremes of conciliatory commodityand negative commentary. however. critical architecture. has now been rendered an everydayfact of life. CarolBurns and Robert Taylor. Even before examining the various reconfigurations of Roweand Tafuri. and visual culture which is outside the discipline and which encompasses it . at least. intellectual.This time. Michael Hays's canonic essay "Critical Architecture:Between Culture and Form"offered a useful corrective to the editorial position of the issue by indirectly implying that the editors were insufficiently dialectical in their understandingof engagement and autonomy. It is from Rowe's and Tafuri's conceptual genetic material that architecture's critical project has been formulated. The criticality of Hays and Eisenman maintains the oppositional or dialectical frameworkin the workof their mentors and predecessors.set out an ambitious agenda for issue 21: "Architecture not an isolated or autonois mous medium. regardless of whether it is subsumed or sublated (dialectical materialism)or balanced (liberal formalism). however.pecta. and Tafuri'sapparentlyengaged practice of dialectical critique entails a precise series of formal a prioris as well as a pessimistic prognosis with regard to architecturalproduction. there is a requisite assumption of contradictionor ambiguity." whether within history/theory. while simultaneously trying to short-circuitor blurtheir terms. Within architecture. "literal and phenomenal" (Colin Rowe). Thus "cultureand form"can alternatively be figured as "kitsch and avant-garde"(Clement Greenberg). useful) to provide an alternative to the now dominant paradigm of criticality. K. the critical project of "betweeness.2 both Hays and Eisenman rely on dialectics . As evidenced by Hays's insightful polemic. an alternative that will be characterized here as projective. What for Hays was then an exceptional practice. If nothing else.. as with Hays.the topic is explicitly underwritten by the terms established in Hays's1984 essay: "PerApecta is built around 33 the belief that architecture stands in the critical position between being a cultural product and a discrete autonomous discipline.or in terms of design. In their various attempts to hybridizeRowe and Tafuriin orderto fashion a critical position. it is actively engaged by the social.this inflation of critical practice by the editors of 33 has perhaps unconsciously identified a fact of the last twenty years: namely. under the regime of textuality.as is immediatelyevidencedin the titles of the journals each was responsible for founding: Oppositions . it may be necessary (or. the editors of Per. if never completely realize. the editors of 33 implythat all architecturenow automatically occupies a de facto critical status.however.Seen in this way. it is important to recognize that the opposition between them is never as clear as would be imagined: Rowe's ostensibly formal project has deep connections to a particular liberal politics. "objecthoodand art" (Michael Fried). as with the work of Peter Eisenman.

here linked to the indexical. Le Corbusier: Perspective. ." whose is continually being decided. indices of their procedures of design or construction. r . reproduction.. the objects themselves are also significantly missing in both cases."ForEisenman and Hays. In Eisenman's discussion of the Dom-ino. and its simultaneous commentaryon that condition. Despite their implicit critiques of Michael Fried'saesthetics. In markingthe status of its existence. which situated the frame within the context of the critical-indexical project of the 1970S. original Barcelona Pavilion. representation. One could say that their definition of disciplinarityis directedagainst reification rather then toward the possibility of emergence.Eisenman understands LeCorbusier'sDomino as the trace of a transformative process.the Dom-inoand Barcelona Pavilion are at once traces of an event. and pragmatics). as parallel realignments of Rowe and Tafuri. so that a series of reproductions must stand in as their traces.linked to the diagrammatic. it is still tied to a semiotic. disciplinarity is understood as autonomy (enabling critique. . the dialectical and hot representation .Right and below right "1909theorem: the Skyscraper as utopian device for the production of unlimited numbers of virgin sites on a single metropolitan location." This status of being in the world yet resistant to it is attained by the WlRsLCLY. . FROM INDEXTO DIAGRAM In the significant production of both Hays and Eisenman. For both.5Mi" Il i llm with signiother words." Oppositions 15/16. . it exists as a physically fication: in driven sign. and in so doing he deviates from Rowe by animating the grid. one that is not culturally or visually determined. This act of meaning decision is both in fact and etymologicallythe critj. "Dom-ino house prototype.83. one might look to Rem Kools's appropriationof the mass cultural Amerframe at the same moment. its imagination of architectural movement relies on a narrativefor the grid.'This obsession manifests itself both in Hays'saccount of Mies van der Rohe's Barcelona Pavilion and Peter Eisenman's rereading of Le Corbusier'sDom-ino. as well as the way it serves as a trace of its productive systems. The sign is a record of an intervention an event and an act which goes beyond the presence of elements which are merely necessary conditions." From Rem Koolhaas. For Hays. ** . and objects that potentially point to a state of continual transformation. ical gesture par excellence. Mies's architecture situates itself "between the efficient representation of preexisting cultural values and the wholly detached autonomy of an abstract formal system. and signification). (NY: Monacelli. the Dom-inois one of the first modernist and critical gestures in architecture: "Architectureis both substance and act.it is the design process itself that is being registered rather than the material productiveand technical systems or specific context discussed by Hays. - - . or the historical photographs Hays uses to extract the experience of the defunct. in its ability to function as a self-referential sign. "Aspects of Modernism: Maison Dom-ino and the SelfReferential Sign. performativity. emergencepromises that serial accumulationmay itself result in the productionof new qualities. Just as the indexical project assumes or invents a particular kind of reading subject for architecture.^ reification concerns itself with the negativ tion of qualitative experience to quantificat. whose actual or existence is continuallybeing produced. Thus. the critical forms of self-referentiality are demonstrated via serial reproductions: be they Eisenman's redrawn axonometrics of the non-existent Dom-ino perspective. it is perpetuallyobsessed by. 1994). As suggested above. as are the symbol or icon.' l waythe architecturalobject materiallyreflects its specific temporal and spatial context.this text develops an alternative genealogy of the projective. representational and sequential ambi- 3 .3both Eisenman and Hays ultimately fear literalism as much as Fried does.where both authors adopt the technique of the index. p.eLlI_m . but not as instrumentality (projection.the atmospheric and cool performance. in fact. In both cases.the critical project is inevitably mediated. Just as the architectural artifacts are indices of a missing process or practice. This process of infinite regress or deferralis constitutive of the critical architecturalproject:architectureinevitably and centrally preoccupiedby its status as representation. As an alternative to Eisenman's reflections on the high European frame.and inextricably linked to.**-_ and AAAemblage. although the indexical program for architecture may proceed through diagrams. Hays describes the Barcelona Pavilion as 'an event with temporal duration. As an alternative to the critical project ." From Peter Eisenman. both warn against the isomorphic remapping of life and art.

the IntraCenterelides the expected Above Projective Architecture: diagram of overlap of A (architecture) with P (politics). social services.these two examples begin to differentiate the critical project in architecture. Koolhaas's invocation of the "cartoon-theorem"from Life magazine . etc. relative velocity. atmople programs so as to provide each with its own sphere.MINING AUTONOMY / 75 tion. as in Koolhaas'sstaging of the DowntownAthletic Club. a Doppler architecture Kentucky. the Doppler projects forward alternative (not necessarily oppositional) arrangementsor scenarios. ) how design may affect rts on dqilnd c k th--Se itfter " --PiW e__. in pitch between the sound of a train as An example of a projective architecturethat change it approaches and then moves away from the lisengages the strategy of the Dopplereffect in lieu tener. E (economics) and T (theory). Fromthese two inventions of the framestructure in mid-7os architectural discourse. The Doppier shifts the understanding of disciplinarity as autonomy to disciplinarity as performance or practice. library. with its connection to the indexical. projective architecture does not make\a claini for expertise outside the field of architc- ture nor does it limit its field of expertise Qw absolute defittt aetitecture. they are not for reading. governed by rules. for example . Design thing similar to the DopplerEffect . rather than as critics. becoming. program. writing. shops. Gilles Deleuze argues that Foucault understands Jeremy Bentham's Panopticon not simply as a machine for surveillance.a ture's autonomy as a means of defining architec40.) but it also includes when the source and receiver of the wave have a qualities of sensibility. form.as well as the section cut from the Downtown Athletic Club . but not independent domains.the Dopplerfocuses upon the effects and exchanges of architecture's inherent ties."Koolhaas's investigation of the frame structure is diagrammatic in the same way. In the former. The DopplerEffect explains the and atmosphere. etc."9 Ratherthan looking back or criticizing the status quo. cafe. as in the case of Eisenman's reading of the Domino. the projectiveemploys someother disciplines.LE the oppositionars- h-FlO D IA LECT IC experts on economics or civic poltlcl b4t. In the latter.disCe aiand expertise f So w en architects engae pic that are seemingl outside oMciteure's historically-defined sce .computer center. etc. Ratherthan isolating a geneity:daycare. change in the frequency of a wave that occurs materiality.2 communitycenter located in Lexington. and in this way extends Michel Foucault'sreflections on heterotopias and prisons. which proceedsthroughthe dfigram. Design iswht architecture from slippingstoa cloud of keeps Peterogeneity.they don't engage those topics as 7 the index is the t?eWe -< \ ~~/ ^^~ \^ ^^?-" ~\^^~ ~ ^ '^aS~~~~s F rv-r hOF. from the projective. instigating new events and behaviors.These NewYorkframes exist as instruments of metropolitanplasticity and are not primarilyarchitecturefor paying attention to. or rather than establishing a neutralfield so as to allowthe programsto define the project.questions of economics or civic politics. Thediagram is a tool of the _rtualet real. unplanned and ungovernable. disciplinarity as autonomy and process. It delineates the fluctuatinf borders of architG9's. economics. . Moreover. It is important to underscore that this multiplying of contingencies differs greatly fromthe more dilute formalidentification. and traditions.principles. ambiance.patief.alternatively enlists a vision of architecture as contributing to the production and projection of new forms of collectivity. but that definition stems from design and its effects rather than a language of means and materials. but rather an active organism or discursive practice. and disciplinarity as force and effect. proportion.athletic facilities.the perceived encompasses object qualities (form.composition.000 ft. Middle The Doppler Effect. ture's field or discipline.knowledge and form are based on shared norms. Rather than figuring these multimultiplicities: material. nsi Ratherthaen -attionshiptothfi/ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~%_ of critical dialectics. A projective architecturedoes not shy away from reinstating architecturaldefinition.7 notion of interdisciplinarity. job training facilisingular autonomy. such as effect. technologies.The IntraCenter'sclient provided ww with a programlist of dizzying operationalheteroacknowledges the adaptive synthesis of architecture'smany contingencies. but more broadly and productively as a diagramwhich "imposesa particular form of conduct on a particular multiplicity.which seeks to legitimize architecturethrough an external measuring stick. a more Foucaultian notion of disciplinarity is advanced in which the discipline is not a fixed datum or entity. like Foucault's "unities formling] a number of autonomous. one can discern two orientations toward disciplinarity: that is.8 If critical dialectics established architecof that of the dialectic is ww's IntraCenter. but for seducing. therebyreducing architectureto the entirely amorphousrole of absorberof heterogeneous life. but in perpetual transformation. The skyscraper-machine allows the projection infinitely upwardof virtual worlds within this world.

"Methodacting was connected to psychoanalysis. they require the participation of the user. as Yve-Alain Bois notes. He or she might understand how the building responds to a formal history of architecture or deploys a specific technology or he or she might have particular associations with .it is not a reading strategy . delivered.parallax is the theatrical effect of a peripatetic view of an object tjs xo at _ a a building's material palette or site. "the comes fromthe Greekparallaxis." and motivation. As the novelist W. is always surprising and plausible. of moving from a "hot"to a "cool"version of the discipline.he says.or "change": in the position of an object resultapparentchange ing from the change in the . are low-definition and.but an atmospheric interaction. In contrast. architecture's relationship to philosophy was like that of De Niro to his character. it is not just an unfolding reading of an artwork. Their lack of alignment leads to a perpetual Doppler shift between the two.. Hickey says they are not really acting. where the architect expressed a text or where architecture represented its procedure of formation. a user might be more attuned to certain aspects of a building than others. As with the "criticalproject. cool media."While Robert De Niro is an actor in the first category.In other words.12 performance.G. Hickey argues. In his obituary on the actor.While cooling suggests a process of mixing (and thus the DopplerEffect would be one form of cool). firmness and delight).Mitchumis in the second.one might characterizethe shift from critical to projective modes of disciplinarity as a process of cooling down or.. Cool is relaxed. There are two kinds of actors. the hot resists through distinction. Predicated on waves that can be auditory or visual. position fromwhich it is viewed. First are some who construct a character out of details and make you believe their character by constructing a narrative for them.and supplies a sub-textforthe text of the script. worked. each one of us experiences moments of repetition. to calling up and reenacting memories and past events. the Doppler suggests that the optical and conceptual are only two of many sensibilities. Bois responded cites as an example Serra'sdescription of his sculpture entitled Sight Point: "[Itseems at first] to fall right to left. it is lowdefinition and requires the context and viewer to complete it. This difference between the cool and the hot may be amplified by briefly examining a medium McLuhan does not discuss: performance. Onecould say that this is the school where the actor provides gesture of the "Method. The second group of actors create plausibility by their bodies. coincidence or duplication.he iA inveating the text with hiAown aubversiveviLion. complicated. such as television. which.hiAown pace and senAe of dark contingency. the formalist-critical project is hot in its prioritization of definition. and with articulating difference. a kind of Method acting. since the informationthey conveyis compromised. This strategy of non-concentricity generates other DopplerEffects.And it's exactly this trait of surprising plausibility that might be adapted as a projective effect.that is. belabored. conversations.Sebald explains.hot media like film are "highdefinition". FROM HOT TO COOL Someoneshould eAtabliAh anthropologyof an hot and cool. lean Baudrillard Overall. delineation and distinction (or medium specificity). Hickeysays... is. moods and encounters affect currentones. Mitchum. Minimalism explicitly requires participation and is related to Smithson's promotion of entropy. The IntraCenteris projective rather than critical in that it very deliberatelysets into motion the possibility of multiple engagements rather than a single articulation of program. hearing and seeing out of phase that generate momentary deja vus. but not being sure exactly what it is.technology or form (contemporaryarchitecture's commodity."1In other words. including the many reverberations among overlapping constituencies as well as material and structural conditions. but rather "performingwith a vengeance.76 / SOMOL & WHITING overlap between form and program. The Doppler Effect shares some attributes with parallax. in Marshall McLuhan's terms. In this regard. Like Coltrane. or Method designing. Such momentary echoes are like tracks out of alignment. It foregrounds the belief that both the subject and the object carry and exchange information and energy. By contrast. an overlap of real and virtual worlds. In the nineteen-eighties and nineties.TheMitchumeffect relies on knowing something is back there. For McLuhan. where echoes of other experiences. and connotes the overly difficult. one which combines the chance event with an expanded realism. So what we Aeein a MitchumperformanceiAless the character alternative:Whatif portrayedthan a propoAitional someone with Mitchumrn AenAibility grew up to be 13 a sea captain?a private eye?a school-teacher? ihof x tL is in that it is not purely optical. conveying very precise information on one channel or in one mode. lacking both self-sufficiency and selfconsciousness. Additionally.backgroundor anonymous conditions of production. Dave Hickey writes that with Robert Mitchum you get perforand mance. then. In short. would be a cool art form. That would occur three times as you walked around. One alternative. and straighten itself out to a truncated pyramid. not expressed but (orrepresented). Hickeysays that what Mitchum does.playing a Atandard. easy."10 Claiming that Serra consciously to the possibilities of parallax. Criticalarchitectureis hot in the sense that it is preoccupiedwith separating itself from normative. minimalism. make an x.

see Deleuze and Guattari: "Diagrams must be distinguished tporial signs.. . McLUt' jnriderstanding of mediation as mass media's can resist..' .. .ameson's theorization of mediation as an active between two subjects or between a subject ageAi.MINING AUTONOMY / 77 re " .. Ha. Left Robert Mitchum.!i':-:':v':~." ":'"'m '-' 'ambridge: MITPress October "n.. :..The of the unhomely has been replaced wil :. ember/October 1997): 10-13...." Thousand Plateaus (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota .::. but also from icons.njfBn WF Fried was a trical : Frei.. which pertain to reterbols.isreading as poetic influence: tic poets . oEA :ii ~.i:i. Form-Program Diagram 1. ww. ~' . ?.: -' :". iisenman misread Rowe and .not psychodramas.Chitecture Culture and Form. 2001..liOpOsitions15/16 (Winter/Spring.i:::. 'i. . "A Picturesque Stroll Around Clara-Clara."Perspecta 21 (Cambridge.... ?:". but rather constructs a real that is yet A y.always proceeds by a ton that is actually and necessarily nfluence: A Theoryof Poetry (NY: Oxford anathema that undermined modern- .onary. ". Christian by wledge... ... an external .. rather than reflect. 1979).:rop'ositional alternative of the untimely. an abstract machine is neither an infrastructure t instance nor a transcendental Idea that is determining in the plays a piloting role.ys:. wvered the Austrian mathematician and physicist... "Aspects of Modernism: Maison Dom-ino 1'!. 2001. The diagrammatic or abstract machine It. which pertain to relative or negative deterritorialization.* -i:: arios. . :this way. 'i~0ion Feen that operates as pure conciliation between pas.even something real. edited by Deborah Berke and 1997).^ i Within -ect deli of .<:::.''' .?..?i'etween e?Pet-r' Eisenman. IntraCenter. ww.:.0:hoQw:.':': :. Opposite page IntraCenter.f.' Ot" a~e.ci..