14 February

"He was apprehended, and sent by the emperor [Claudies II] to the perfect of Rome, who, on finding all his promises to make him renounce his faith ineffectual, commanded him to be beaten with clubs, and afterwards to be beheaded, which was executed on February 14, about the year 269. Pope Julius I is said to have built a church near Ponte Mole to his memory, which for a long time gave name to the gate now called Porta della Popolo, formerly Porta Valentini."

1571 death of Benvenuto Cellini

1678 death of Abraham Bosse

1880 death of Francois Léonce Reynaud


Horace Trumbauer, Whitemarsh Hall (Wyndmoor, PA: under construction, 1917.02.14).

on Unbuilding
2004.02.14

Re: of castles, fortifications, etc.
2004.02.14 14:07     3900h 4715

non-event cities
2006.02.14 10:17     4500k
2006.02.14 11:23     3900k
2006.02.14 12:48
2006.02.14 14:47
2006.02.14 15:24
2006.02.14 18:43     3900k

Architecture as a Cult
2006.02.14 14:47

14 February
2013.02.14 11:22     3301r s t 3730k 3899c 4300i 4411e 4500s

how people see : eyetracker & architecture
2013.02.14 12:00

This is Why We Can't Have Nice Things
2015.02.14 22:02     3310d

2013.02.14 11:22
14 February

1983:
It's Monday, and I'm at Intergraph headquarters in Huntsville, Alabama; the Space Shuttle was designed and drawn here. I'm here for eight days of CAD training, sent by Cooper & Pratt Architects of Philadelphia. I've been working as an (un-licensed) architect for just over a year, and next month I'll be 27 years old. I already know that the time I spend at Intergraph has the capacity to change the direction of my life.

Training started in a windowless classroom; oh what a joy. Bernie (my co-worker from Philadelphia) and I are the youngest trainees; the rest (about 8) are older architects, heads of their own firms; they all wondered why our employers chose to send the relatively inexperienced two of us. Right away we recieved several manuals in fully loaded binders; it's exhausting just looking at those things. Nevertheless, I manage to pay somewhat close attention to what is being taught, but really only looking forward to the first hands-on session scheduled for the second part of the afternoon class.

Two 14" monitors, floating command menu, 12-button cursor, large digitizing table. Blank screens can be, I find out, just as intimidating as the proverbial blank sheet of paper. After testing most of the basic drawing commands I notice that some of the other's monitors have point grids on the screen. I ask the TA watching me from behind how I can do that; he quickly showed how to turn the grids on and off and how to customize the grid to whatever module I wanted. Having a point of reference is suddenly the key that unlocks it all. So, what's my first CAD drawing going to be?

Through of an essay on geometry I'd written in 1979, I knew Palladio's plan of the Villa Rotunda followed a geometry of concentric circles within squares. If I got the circles/squares on the screen, then I could easily and accurately draw the plan of the Villa Rotunda from memory. I was the first in the room to have an actual whole plan on the screen. Upon seeing it, one of the older architects kind of jealously asked, "So, does your office do classical architecture or something?" I had to stop myself from laughing, but still thought, "What an idiot."


A much more precise reenactment.

Tommorrow I'll be drawing the plan of my own most recent design, from memory.



2004.02.14 14:07
Re: of castles, fortifications, etc.
Architect Aldo Rossi also held the lighthouse typology in high regard. If you are not familiar with his many architectural sketches (many of which are published in a fair number of books), you might find lots of inspiration related to your own work. His collecting of favorite typologies is much akin to your own collecting of the 'architecture of electricity'.
Last evening Philadelphia was witness to a great 100' to 150' column of fire. Ten minutes before 5 o'clock a small crew of water workers at the intersection of Olney and Ogontz Avenues (about 2.5 miles directly west from where I live) accidentally broke open a 20" gas main, and within a half minute there erupted an enormous explosion resulting in a tremendously powerful vertical jet of flame. Miraculously, no one was injured, and after four hours the pressure within the gas main was shut off, and the column of fire was gone.

Your thoughts about the place of fiction in the reality of modern life is poignant. Late last night I watched the movie (based on the book) Remains of the Day, and it's story seems to relate to what you say.
From amazon.com: "The novel's narrator, Stevens, is a perfect English butler who tries to give his narrow existence form and meaning through the self-effacing, almost mystical practice of his profession. In a career that spans the second World War, Stevens is oblivious of the real life that goes on around him--oblivious, for instance, of the fact that his aristocrat employer is a Nazi sympathizer. Still, there are even larger matters at stake in this heartbreaking, pitch-perfect novel--namely, Stevens' own ability to allow some bit of life-affirming love into his tightly repressed existence."
What I saw in the film is that the aristocrat employer was just as oblivious as his butler, an oblivion, moreover, manifest by grandly organized pretense. In the movie, Christopher Reeves plays a U.S. Congressman from Pennsylvania. Before he visits the manor for a circa 1936 foreign affairs conference, the aristocrat and some of his compatriots wonder as to the source of the Congressman's family's wealth--"Perhaps they made their money from trolley cars." This is an obscure reference to the Philadelphia Wideners, for whom Lynnewood Hall by Horace Trumbauer was built.

Horace Trumbauer, Lynnewood Hall (Elkins Park, PA: 1898-1900).
I spent the better part of yesterday afternoon (just across the street from the now derelict Lynnewood Hall, which was once just as grand as the Manor House in the movie) at Our Lady of Prouille, the quondam Elstowe, estate of the Elkins Family, now a retreat house run by the Dominican Sisters of St. Catherine de Ricci. I had the good fortune of speaking with Sister Caroline who is now in charge of the place. We even discussed Louis Kahn's unexecuted design for a Motherhouse which the Sisterhood had commissioned. Before going home, I went to the art library at Temple University's Tyler School of Art (which is right next to where I spoke with Sister Caroline, whose office is within what used to be the estate squash courts). Because I was looking up books about the art treasures that used to be within Lynnewood Hall (now the Widener Collection within the National Gallery, Washington DC), the librarian also brought out of the rare book room a most unexpected item--the 1946 auction catalogue of the estate of Eva Stotesbury.

2006.02.14 10:17
non-event cities
Are "events" now-a-days actually well masked advertisements?
Is "history" now-a-days a record of well masked advertisements?
Are "non-event cities" now-a-days the bulk of reality?
Is there a reality to "architect as event planner?"


2006.02.14 12:48
non-event cities
I don't see King's article about CAC's "failure" as much as I see it about the "failure" of the "buzz." What concerns me is that the buzz too easily becomes the history, and then we're left with a record that is more virtual than real.
King brought a lot of (personal) history of the place in the article. He has personal experience about the place before there even was CAC, and I think he make a valid comparison between the past and the present, and it seems that CAC didn't change all that much as per the buzz. Let's not overlook that fact that this part of Cincinnati really wasn't all that bad before CAC.


2006.02.14 14:47
Architecture as a Cult
Historically speaking, "ducts and pipes and switches" are very new to architecture, and certainly haven't been around for millennia.


2006.02.14 15:24
non-event cities
buzzwords:
skyrocketing, payoff, edginess, branding a city, nodding to nostalgia, cave-in, bilbao effect


2006.02.14 15:59
non-event cities
...is it a reality now-a-days that only architecture by star architects will even generate buzz? Who exactly is benefiting most from the buzz, from the masked advertisments?

10021401 ICM Stagnum Agrippae Thermae Alexandri Severi


13021401 Governor's Palace all scans aligned each floor separate elevation scans aligned
13021402 Governor's Palace plans and scans all in register (relative to the site plan)


2013.02.14 12:00
how people see : eyetracker & architecture
I don't know if you'll find anything regarding "architects assuming they control viewer's gaze pattern," but Architecture and Visual Perception is the theme of Via 6 (1983), the journal of the Graduate School of Fine Arts University of Pennsylvania.
Some essays:
Buildings as Percepts
Visual Perception in Architecture
Eye and Archetype (by Anne Tyng)
Aspects of Spatial Form and Perceptual Psychology in Soviet Architecture of the 1920s
Le Nostre and Optical Illusion


15021401 Bldg 9594b @ GAUA 1100x550
15021402 Bldg 9594c @ GAUA 1100x550



2013:
Log 26 came in the mail two days ago; I read Scolari's "Representation" early this morning. In a somewhat typical way, he says some judgmentally naive things about CAD drawing like, "A computer delocalizes our memory because the entire information library doesn't belong to us, because it's not inside us; it has little to do with our feelings and our mind--that is with our memory." The name of every CAD drawing file I create is simply the date it was created, thus each of my drawings is a very precise, well stored memory easily shifted into random access memory.
Scolari does say, however, some nice things about drawing/not drawing Calvino's Invisible Cities. It got me thinking that what I've been doing for more than half of the last 30 years is drawing/not drawing an invisible museum of architecture.


16021401   Olivetti Headquarters plan conference room model   2216i13
16021402   Palais des Congrès level 4 plan stage set model   2198i26
16021403   Maison Dom-ino Composition Three models   2140i13
16021404   Maison Dom-ino Legacy models vw=-90,,30 shadow light=03.20 14:00 76/40 buffer=14.0x   2140i14
16021405   Stirling's Muses plans   2234i04



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