letter to Erasmus
"I'm sending you my nowhere, which is nowhere well written" and including a prefatory poem that points out, "The Ancients called me Utopia or Nowhere because of my isolation. . . . Deservedly ought I to be called by the name of Eutopia or Happy Land."

2008.10.06 10:39
Mixing Design Elements of Different Style Homes-Your Opinion
forget utopian and go ottopian

2009.06.28 11:03
what is the difference between paradise & utopia?
The entire January 1972 issue of Du magazine (Swiss) is devoted to "Utopia: Visionärer Städtebau gestern und heute" (Utopia: Visionary Urban Design yesterday and today). Unfortunately, all the text is in German with not even an English summery.
Off hand, the only specific architect[ural] rendition of Paradise I can think of is Terragni's Paradiso (room) within the Danteum.
There are, however, many oasis reenactments (i.e., paradise) within architectural design. Learning from Las Vegas notes the 'oasis' aspect of the outdoor pool areas of the various hotels, and even Dubai (and it's artificial islands) and Abu Dhabi may be considered reenactments of the oasis/paradise paradigm rather than following an utopian model.
Paradise as the ultimate in real estate?

2009.06.28 12:00
what is the difference between paradise & utopia?
Perhaps also related is Robert Geddes's "The Forest Edge" in A.D. 52 11/12-1982. The opening paragraphs:
"In 1753, Marc Antoine Laugier, the French theorist, proposed the primitive hut as the foundation of architecture in his Essai sur l'architecture. The frontispiece of his second edition shows the muse indicating architecture's true source and origin by pointing to a hut at the edge of the forest made of four trees acting as columns.
I suggest an additional interpretation of Laugier's engraving. I believe the muse is directing our attention not only to the building as the reconstructed forest [or the forest reenacted], but also to the edge of the forest itself. She is pointing out the ideal habitat of man, the forest edge, where the woodlands and grasslands meet."
and later...
"While the current focus of ecological and conservationist movements has given new life to Thoreau's view of wilderness, these political movements do not propose that man should live in the wild. The hold that man is a visitor and should leave no trace of his passing."
Without having now (re-)read all of "The Forest Edge", I nonetheless get the sense that the text may evoke ideas that are both paradisic and utopian, ending with examples of practical design applications.
Is the current "green" movement in some ways an advanced combination of the paradise and utopian paradigms?

2009.06.28 16:43
what is the difference between paradise & utopia?
I'd say both paradise and utopia are man-made [intellectual] constructs, but paradise is metaphoric and utopia is paradigmatic.

2009.07.01 15:36
what is the difference between paradise & utopia?
...I found your intitial query thought provoking in that, as you say, one doesn't really hear about architects designing (a) paradise.
When PG,UB suggested research into landscape design of the Middle Eastern and Islamic world, I began to think about the Alhambra--a fortress/palace/city as paradise.
Regarding heterotopia, for some reason, I began to think of the novel Platform--notions of sex tourism within 'paradise'. Also got out my Foucault Reader and read "Space, Knowledge and Power" where Foucault says a few things about ancient Roman baths and their eventual demise throughout Europe--not exactly places of paradise, but public, social places centered around activities of pleasure.
You say you are planning to design a paradise. Care to share a little more about that?



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