If you look at any leaf on any tree branch, it's similar to but not exactly a repetition of the previous branch. So the new science of complexity or showing how an architecture can be produced just as quickly, cheaply and efficiently by using computer production methods to get the slight variation, the self-similarity.
Modern Architecture died in St. Louis, Missouri, on July 15, 1972, at 3.32 p.m. (or thereabouts), when the infamous Pruitt Igoe scheme, or rather several of its slab blocks, were given the final coup de grace by dynamite.
I do believe architecture, and all art, should be content-driven. It should have something to say beyond the sensational.
I'd been to Stourhead and was inspired by the perfect parity between architecture and art: in fact, the architecture is the art. I wrote a piece called 'Not Sculpture Park,' because most of these things become car parks for bought-in sculpture. The artists should be working with the site, not just plonking pieces down.
Mies van der Rohe's architecture and modern architecture in general suffered from not only being repetitive, but not explaining to the populous what the different rooms were for.
Like our attitude to love, truth and goodness, we seem to be confident about knowing what beauty is - certain, even dogmatic - until we think hard about the idea, whereupon all confidence flies away.
If you look at Gothic detailing right down to the bottom of a column or the capital of a column, it's a small version of the whole building: that's why, like dating the backbones of a dinosaur, a good historian can look at a detail of a Gothic building and tell you exactly what the rest of the building was, and infer the whole from the parts.
A placebo is a phony cure that works. This is very hard for the medical profession to get their teeth around because they hate placebos, but scientifically, placebos work in about 30% of cases that are psychogenic diseases.
Science is a victim of its own reductive metaphors: 'Big Bang,' 'selfish gene' and so on. Richard Dawkins' selfish gene fitted with the Thatcherite politics of the time. It should actually be the 'altruistic gene,' but he'd never have sold as many books with a title like that.
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