ruminations about architecture and design

Thursday, December 18, 2014

unequal architecture

In the post yesterday it was stated that towers of ilium supports innovation. Let me qualify that a bit: Limited experiments that are tested by the market are the only effective way to achieve progress. Too often, innovators get caught up in the implications of their schemes and assume a level of market disruption that is bizarre. The iPhone is a remarkable toy that has so far failed to disrupt face to face communication. Likewise, the Apple aesthetic will someday be regarded as a design curiosity similar to fins on cars.

In architecture, innovation depends on subtlety, and that often doesn't make for good magazine articles. The awards and press tend to focus on what appear to be disruptive models of design, but are in fact rare events with limited influence. Housing is an area of particular concern to me. The obsession with high density lifestyles is an epidemic in the design profession. Innovative schemes are used to conceal the fact that most modern urban living models depend on bland, repetitive, conventional, and above all, reliable, buildings. Double loaded corridors, simple facades, predominantly private space, and very little ornament.

And the suburb shall be our aspiration..... (more on that later, maybe)

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