12/10/2003

12-10-03 - 1

12-10-03

Architecture is almost too powerful an art form. You can make a painting or a photograph that is uncomfortable, sad, bleak, grotesque, sickening. Sure, it may be moving when you look at it, but you can simply look away, and return to the space you're in. When you go into a physical space that makes you feel that way, it sneaks up on you, and then creeps into you, and you feel it from the inside, and you can't escape it - you have to leave. Because of this, the emotional palette of architecture has been limitted to positives - cozy, grand, impressive, elegant, cheery, quiant, etc. We had a brief expansion with Bauhaus and the International style, where a slightly broader palette of positives was introduced - pure, starkly beautiful - though there was something bad about the beginning of the modern period, which was that some architects started making buildings that appealed to critics instead of spaces that could be felt by the average people who were in them. Spaces should be visceral things which are felt at a base level by anyone with a sensitive spine and tingling hairs on the back of their neck (probing the air like antenae). They should not be things you have to ponder and compare to previous works, think of their allegorical meaning, their symbolism or message, that's intellectual snobbery and masturbation.

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