apposing the shells of architectural thought
If we focus on the corporeal presence that Hejduk gives to his troupe of institutions, personalities, and urban forms--such as Senate/Council, Cultural Center, Mayor/Cardinal, and Typical Street--it is possible to discern the existence of a second troupe, an extensive repertoire of architectonic types, elements, and devices that are immensely powerful in their own right. In designing these figures, Hejduk mobilizes architecture as a medium in a way that draws on two practices that have been opposed over the past two hundred years: allegory and expression. If the Clock/Collapse of Time signals the folding together of cyclical and linear time into a state of timelessness, then Hejduk's conception of the medium of architecture likewise folds together devices associated with representational theories of architecture, such as mimesis (imitation), and tactics that were developed as architects sought to step outside of representation and memory. Hejduk's work revisits modern architecture's problematic relationship to mimesis, which, since the collapse of confidence in classicist representation during the eighteenth century, has haunted the discipline and confused its social role. Hejduk's work negotiates a recuperation of representation by absorbing the results of anti-mimetic research about the nature of architecture and of perception into the representational devices of type, memory, body, and image, thereby collapsing into a revitalized theatricality two centuries of effort aimed at transparency of "form" and "expression." Hejduk passes techniques once considered transparent to meaning back into the opacity of the mask: these shells are capable of evoking in ways that are both direct and indirect, that engage conventions and associations as well as the perceptual apparatus of the body.
Quondam © 2020.03.08