|Published online: April 4, 2014||$US5.00|
Designers of territorial projects or urban interventions have been inspired by new geographical research, especially by the possibility of mapping and critically engaging with the most fluid aspects of postmodern reality. Yet other designers, especially those using parametric techniques, are primarily interested in aesthetic effects, dismissing the site-specific aspects of cultural, social, economic, or political issues. This paper argues that such a shift from critical to non-critical attitudes in architecture is motivated by a subconscious desire to provide mental comfort to people unsettled by the dynamically changing world. It claims that contemporary parametric forms, much like earlier kaleidoscopic compositions in Victorian England, substitute self-referential effects for an awareness of the actual complexity of the world in which we live. Thus it is necessary to distinguish between design practices that promote mental denial and those that critically inform conceptual processes.
|Keywords:||Architecture, Urbanism, Geography, Parametric Design|
Spaces and Flows: An International Journal of Urban and ExtraUrban Studies, Volume 4, Issue 2, June 2014, pp.39-50. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: April 4, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1004.941KB)).
Professor, School of Architecture, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA