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Architecture’s Excess Possibilities 

Here's a nice article on Architectural deterrents to its own use. We should perhaps dig past the obvious and proper outrage around these practices to note how architecture generates its own crevices, the attempt to modulate them a sign both of our capacity to exceed plans and the excess that every plan is to itself. …

Posted 36 months ago by

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Story Place 

"Story time," we call it, but it is just as much a place. We have places for our stories. Or is it stories for our places? But isn't this just another way of saying there is a time and a place for stories? And isn't this just another, polite, way of saying there are times …

Posted 72 months ago by

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Getting Schooled for Misunderstanding Architecture 

I'm no classicist. Not my angle. But Seven Misunderstandings About Classical Architecture, by Quinlan Terry, is a masterclass. And what I love about it is that it catches us dismissers of Classical Architecture in our own net. Isn't the problem with Classical Architecture that it doesn't pay attention? Substituting past conventions and formal, abstract rules …

Posted 72 months ago by

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The University’s Desire and the Half-Bridge 

Deleuze & Guattari, in their extraordinary (and admirably concise) book on Kafka, suggest, amongst a series, the following rule of thumb: "a text that can be the seed of a novel will be abandoned if Kafka imagines an animal escape that allows him to finish with it." (38) In other words, if it can be …

Posted 75 months ago by

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Le Corbusier on Education 

Following up on the Surrealist's concise definition of school, I bring you the architect Le Corbusier, from his book Aircraft: The schools are run by 'professors' (the very definition of a school).

Posted 79 months ago by

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The Architecture of Segregation 

Posted 79 months ago by

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Education: Outside In 

Could we imagine that the intersection of the Prairie School of architecture and progressive education marks a particular strategy of reworking the the urban topology? In it's rejection of neo-classical ornament and scale--school as urban citadel--we might see not simply a ruthless break with history, but an attempt to draw to the surface a perennial …

Posted 80 months ago by

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Progressive Architecture 

Last week I found myself trying to lay out for my colleagues—in preparation for an upcoming Colloquium by Kevin D. Murphy, on school architecture—the essential relationship between philosophies of education and architecture. Tricky, since this relationship tends to go deep underground. Into caves, for example. And the challenge is to realize that it is not …

Posted 80 months ago by

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The Tower of Wisdom 

The Tower of Wisdom is found frequently in diagram collections of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. It was part of a tradition of architectural mnemonic aids going back to the "memory palaces" promoted by the Roman author Cicero. It also served as an object of meditation; by internalizing its principles, a patient student (often a …

Posted 80 months ago by

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KNOTS: the architecture of problems « LEBBEUS WOODS 

Here's an interesting lecture, using knots as a way of understanding architectural problems. Of course, the connection between knots/labyrinths and slums goes back to architectural beginnings. But I think we should be careful about how we take this up, in particular being critical of the notion that the critical solution to knots is untying them. …

Posted 81 months ago by

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Information as Design 

I woke up this morning thinking of the café in Gottesman Library at Teachers College. Don't ask me, I can't control these things. It struck me that its use is despite itself. Never mind that the most obvious door, flowing into the life of the college is locked, no doubt because the cafe bridges the …

Posted 81 months ago by

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The Grid: A Brief History 

Here's a short essay I wrote a while back, for a workshop I did for movement educators, on how grids shape our experience, and why that might not be the only alternative. The idea was to show the grid as emergent within a cultural context, rather than being a pre-given frame for understanding movement. So …

Posted 84 months ago by

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“And You will Play the Trouble Maker” 

I've been reading Eyal Weizman's excellent book Hollow Land recently, recommended to me by a colleague. It is a quite striking analysis of what Weizman calls "Israel's Architecture of Occupation," a fluid set of territorial and architectural strategies that effectively constitute a working, material, politics. Architecture as one of the many speeds and faces of …

Posted 86 months ago by

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