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Contemporary Forms Of Architecture

Turkey Architecture News - Jul 21, 2014 - 14:36   23439 views

"My thesis, then, is this: In addition to our immediate consciousness, which is of a very personal nature and which we believe to be the only empirical psyche, there exists a second psychic system of a collective, universal, and impersonal nature which is identical in all individuals. This collective unconscious does not develop individually but is inherited. It consists of pre-existing forms, the archetypes, which can only become conscious second, and give final shape to certain psychic contents. "

Carl Jung's concept of the collective unconscious. [1] 



Modern Architecture was a fad. Covered with a tunic ideological and social imprint urban reconstruction, it is undeniable that the dominant gene of the Modern Movement is its aesthetics.

Everything from the "hygienic" appearance of their villas white, to its revolutionary repertoire glassware, steel and concrete, to its development plans gridded reticle was a style; one stylistic straitjacket fiercely defended by countless manifestos should be interpreted as prophesying thezeitgeist modernist.

Modernism planned an alchemical transformation through fashion; sought to transform positivism, rationalism and Cartesian in an architectural style and aesthetic into a science.


In the early twentieth century, Adolf Loos and Le Corbusier two separate paved roads leading to modernism. If for Loos modernism would be achieved by abandoning the misleading paths of previous styles, for Le Corbusier get dogmatic following five steps.

In 1908, published Loos  Ornament and Crime  as a prayer that proposed end use and production of ornamentation. Its called a formulary purge decoration in order to establish the "rational" design of the new century.

A decade and a half later, Le Corbusier presented five points in his Almanac of Modern Architecture. The piles, the roof garden, free plan, horizontal window and free facade became the five vital organs of modernist anatomy.

Although Loos and Le Corbusier drew two alternate routes on the map to modernity, both Ornament and Crime  and the five points show that, above all, Modernism was a style.


In stark contrast to the modernist dogma, so far has defied contemporary architecture rankings.Despite its unprecedented amount of production-both speculative and materialized-contemporary architecture is discussed under a blanket of abstract terms obscurantist and misleading explanations.

The paradox of architecture today is that despite the lack of a written manifesto, this is a common visual language; a plot that remains unclaimed.


In 1992, Peter Eisenman presented a "work in progress" in front of a battalion of architects, urban planners and respectable critics seriously. The project consisted of a tower-loop would be inserted into the former site of Max Reinhardt in Berlin Schauspielhaus, right in front of the unrealized Mies tower.  [2]

Following the presentation, Rem Koolhaas, who was among the observers tried to disarm-claims Eisenman, a Dutch architect project found "very beautiful." After further intellectual exchange in the debate concluded that while the project was still a work in progress so the words could not describe it effectively, you should allow images to "speak" for themselves.

Ten years later in Beijing Koolhaas presented his project for the contest CCTV headquarters.Although their winning proposal had none of the folds of the facade of the Max Reinhardt Haus and parcel of the project was completely different to the proposal in Berlin, the image of the building, which this time was allowed to speak for itself, had an undeniable fact: the proposal for the CCTV tower was another loop.


In  Delirious New York  (1975) Rem Koolhaas compared to Le Corbusier with a magician who reveals his trick when the American skyscraper disappeared inside of his black velvet bag and took out his "Cartesian rabbit.": horizontal skyscraper  [3 ]  With its proposal for the CCTV headquarters, Koolhaas? became a personification of his own "delusional Wizard '? Or, was it the shape of a sophisticated allegory skyscrapers redundancy loop of contemporary architecture?

When in 2004, OMA claimed in its "Patent Universal Modernization" who "invented" the skyscraper-loop, would they have forgotten that Eisenman had proposed building a similar manner over ten years ago?  [4]  Or, do Pat was one quínica joke ironically outlining the fact that contemporary architecture does not invent, only shares anyway?  [5]


The two versions of the tower-loop-the Max Reinhardt Haus and CCTV-marked a turning point not only in the design of skyscrapers, with the birth of a new archetype, but in the dialectic of contemporary architecture, to show that the Hardcorismo could be more than just a theory of the purest of geometric shapes.

Hundreds of buildings show that when the architecture is no longer constrained by technological and economic constraints, concepts such as scale, function, location, or the program might be finally abolished. Freed from these orthodoxies, a new generation of buildings could be built not only in the form of towers-loop, but in the form of inverted pyramids, Roman and Chinese characters and entire buildings may seem stacked boxes.

In fact, the new constellation of pure forms Hardcorismo makes a kind of contemporary architectural 'Big Bang'; an explosion of forms due to the limited speed in the decision making architecture, are repeated indefinitely. What follows this prolific production and reproduction of forms is a new conclusion to an old philosophical problem: form follows form.


As a formal ontology,  contemporary forms of architecture Hardcorista  shows how some contemporary practices (and their historical predecessors) have found a common language without having a formal statement justifying some ideology or aesthetic trend. Just an initial sample of a repertoire in full swing, the following categories reveal how contemporary architecture gives a similar consistency to the five points of Le Corbusier gave to Modernism.

"Sassy" to architectural discourse, each of the following images displays a set of buildings, grouped by their similar shapes and stripped of their original contexts, are placed in completely new scenarios with the aim of establishing new narratives. Provocations  [6]  Because very often the paintings by Caspar David Friedrich reveal the underlying tension between raw nature and manmade objects, their bare landscapes are taken as scenic backgrounds to highlight the dramatic struggle of a number of architectures that while immersed in the pursuit of uniqueness, are challenged by his sublime display similarities.

Contemporary Landscapes of Hardcorismo I: The Loop

Rather than just up and down in a vertical straight line, the loop connecting two towers on the ground and at higher levels creating a form of continuous visual loop. Although the first known proposal was presented in 1992 by Peter Eisenman, it was not until 2002 when Rem Koolhaas / OMA won the competition to design the CCTV headquarters in Beijing that the loop became a plausible reality.

Max Reinhardt Haus (Peter Eisenman, Berlin, 1992), CCTV (OMA, Beijing, 2002), Campus Center (Oppenheim, Florida, 2008), Phoenix Island (MAD, Sanya, 2009).

Contemporary Landscapes of Hardcorismo II: Stacked Boxes

In the 1960s the avant viewed prefabrication and mobility as the values ??that could transform architecture forever. This faith in new technologies in engineering and construction, mixed with the nostalgia of metabolic systems and science fiction mergers resulted in prefabricated modules and assemblies coming over us from the other in what looks like piles of stacked boxes. Now that the idea of ??mobility has been ruled almost entirely stayed with the proliferation of contemporary images of stacked boxes that will never change position.

Habitat '67 (Moshe Safdie, Montreal, 1967), Skyvillage (MVRDV + Adept, Rodovre, 2008), New Museum (Sanaa, New York, 2007), Vertical Medina (OMA, Tunisia, 2008), Bryghusprojektet (OMA, Copenhagen, 2008), Tate Modern (Herzog & de Meuron, London, 2007).

Contemporary Landscapes of Hardcorismo III: Architectural Fonts

Architecture is a language. Some buildings spell words. Johann David Steingruber Architectonisches Alphabeth published in 1773, drawing building plans in the form of letters of the alphabet. Typography Arquitectonicas resumes Steingruber strategy and transplanted plant to the elevation of the building, creating projects that explain many individual letters when presented alone, or full names when they appear in groups. 

Hamburg Science Centre (O) (OMA, Hamburg , 2004), Koningin Julianaplein (M) (OMA, The Hague, 2002), CCTV Cultural Centre (A) (OMA, Beijing, 2002), Brussels Administrative City (BE) (JDS Architects, Brussels, 2007), W Towers ( W) (BIG Prague, 2008), Vejle Buildings (VEJLE) (PLOT, Vejle, 2004).

Contemporary Landscapes of Hardcorismo IV: Clouds of Steel

Clouds remind steel photomontage with El Lissitzky Wolkenbügel (Cloud-Hanger) rising in cantilever fashion on a Russian city. A revision of the American skyscraper socialist, acrobatic structure Lissitzky was both inspired and constrained by technological and economic limitations of his time. However, new advances in engineering have launched Cloud steel as an archetype for contemporary architecture.  [7] No rest on the top of the building, the clouds today steel project their overhangs at any height of the building.

Wolkenbügel (El Lissitzky, Moscow, 1924-1925), Shenzhen Stock Exchange (OMA, Shenzhen, 2006), China Insurance Group (Coop Himmelb (l) au, Shenzhen, 2008), Tour Dubai (Series and Series, Dubai, 2007 ), IMEC (JDS Architects, Brussels, 2008).

Contemporary Landscapes of Hardcorismo V: Horizontal Condensers

One of the leading architectural strategies that developed in his search for a "form of communal life" during the Bolshevik Revolution is "social condensers" whole segments of buildings dedicated to the group and socialization. [8] A capacitor is then Horizontal a bridge containing the communal space, connecting the individual towers offering programmatic continuity (interior) and visual (elevation) buildings that would otherwise be autonomous. In 1934, Aleksander and Victor Vesnin proposed for the contest Dom Narkomtiazhprom one of the earliest known in the twentieth century horizontal capacitors.  [9] 

Dom Narkomtiazhprom (Vesnin Brothers, Moscow, 1934), Linked Hydrid (Steven Holl Architects, Beijing, 2003-08), European Patent Office (Geyter Xaveer of Architects, The Hague, 2004).

Contemporary Landscapes of Hardcorismo VII: Speleothems

As stalagmites formations or minerals, speleothems consist of groups of buildings whose footprint shrinks on top as either trapezoidal towers or conical shapes. With towers are never identical, but enough to be considered as a group resemble, speleothems have the ability to include mixed-use programs, maintaining a homogeneous formal appearance. The proposed Hanz Konwiarz for Das Alsterzentrum in Hamburg in 1966 can be considered as one of the most notable proposals speleothems 20th century.

Neue Heimat Alsterzentrum (Hans Konwiarz, Hamburg, 1966), Mondri Delano Hotel (JDS Architects, Las Vegas, 2006), Olympic Village Weaving (MVRDV, New York, 2003-04), Vertical Village Mountains (Standardarchitecture, Chengdu, 2012), Gwangyo Power Centre (MVRDV, Seoul, 2007).

Contemporary Landscapes of Hardcorismo VIII: Inverted Pyramids

The pyramids are inverted triangular or quadrilateral buildings with roofs that connect to a trace in a similar way through smaller trapezoidal facades. This structural strategy creates the illusion of a pyramid upside down. One of the first projects to use this formal strategy is the building of the Slovak Radio by Stefan Svetko completed in 1985.

Slovensky Rozhlas (Stefan Svetko, Bratislava, 1962-1985), EPFL Learning Centre (Xaveer of Geyter, Lausanne, 2004) , Kunsthaus (REX, Zurich, 2009), Grand Egyptian Museum (Plot, Cairo, 2002).


[1] Carl Jung, "The Concept of the Collective Unconscious," The Archetypes and the Collective  
Unconscious: The Collected Works, trans. RFC Hull (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1990), 42.

[2] Peter Eisenman, "(K) nowhere to fold", Anywhere, ed. Cynthia Davidson, (New York: Rizolli, 1992), 218-235.

[3] Rem Koolhaas, "Europeans: Biuer; Dali and Le Corbusier Conquer New York "Delirious New York: A Retroactive Manifesto for Manhattan (New York: Monacelli Press, 1978), 253. Translate the author.

[4] For evidence of "Universal Modernization Patent: Skyscraper Loop (2002)" see Rem Koolhaas, Content, (Köln: Taschen, 2003), 511.

[5] Kynicism, as Opposed to modern cynicism (enlightened false consciousness), could be used as a strategy to destabilize the hegemomic powers of the establishment. Often Kynicism Consists of mood (through satire or irony) That Attempts to highlight the absurd intellectual impasse of postures in order to carry out an ideology critique. For more see Peter Sloterdijk, Critique of Cynical Reason, trans.Michael Eldred (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1987). Translation of the author.

[6] is used Brash replacing Cheekines concept. "Cheekiness from below is Effective When It Expresses actual energies as it advances. It must consciously and alertly embody its power to create reality That can be resisted at Most but not ignored. "For more on the concept of cheekiness Strategies quínica see Sloterdijk, "In Search of the Lost Cheekines" Critique of Cynical Reason, 101 -133.  Translate the author

[7]  Like other inherited constructivist buildings, the Wolkenbüge, as argued by Kenneth Frampton was "an attempt to build the American skyscraper into a socialist form. attempt to reconstitute the American skyscraper in a socialist form. "  Kenneth Frampton, "The New Collectivity: Art and Architecture in the Soviet Union: 1918-1932", Modern Architecture: A Critical History, 4th ed. (London: Thames & Hudson, 1980), 178.  extensor For a study on the Wolkenbügel see Gines Garrido and Francisco Burgos, EL Lissitzky: Wolkenbügel 1924-1925, (Madrid: Editorial Rueda, 2004).Translation of the author.

[8]  For more information on the ideals espoused by the forefront during the Bolshevik revolution see Camilla Gray, "1917-1921", The Russian Experiment in Art 1863-1922 (London: Thames & Hudson, 1962), and, Anatole Kopp, Town and Revolution: Soviet Architecture and City Planning, 1917-1935, trans.  Thomas E. Burton (New York: Thames & Hudson, 1970). 

[9]  A detailed explanation of the contest for the seat of Narkomtiazhprom Sun can be found in James Cracraft and Daniel Rowland, Architectures of Russian Identity: 1500 to the Present (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2003), 147.


This article originally published in PLOT

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