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Monthly Archives: December 2010

I departed from the deconstructionism in text, and how the reader became the author of a text and the changing power relations in the modern society with the modification of the author-function that Foucault talks about in his “What is an Author” writing.

Here is a short excerpt from my paper on the subject;

“What does it matter who is speaking, what does it matter who is speaking? As the catharsis of the tragedies suffered a change through time and space, the identity of the stage and the interplay evolved into a new form of space and dialogue; leading the audience turn into a tele-reader of the stage and the critique of the heavy sentiment it has been creating for years. The challenge was signed and examined by two nonlocal and eccentric playwrights, the Irish avant-garde dramatist Samuel Barclay Beckett and the German theatre practitioner Bertolt Brecht, giving rise to a mid-20th century idea of an “epic theater” with the disentangling of the pre-designated melodrama of a traditional activity of pure watching. Absorbing the audience, the play came to be talking to the audience, keeping them aware that they are watching a play by the trial of a distancing effect, alienation, or in Brechtian language Verfremdungseffekt. “Distancing is not destruction, it is an opening up: a rethinking of place.”(Benjamin, A., Deconstruction, p.85) Not a great success though, the method rendered the audience or -reading the stage as a text, what Roland Barthes would do- rendered the reader to be focused on the text itself, rather than the ontology of the writer nor the actor. Author was nodded to be the creator and the executioner of the writing, and the subject of criticism of the reasonable traditional Western was the author-figure itself until then Mallarmé, for the first time in flesh, restored the place of the reader within the text, from a passive regression to an active transgression. The criticism began at the crash of the writings and the reader space, every voice was destructed, the author entered into his own death, writing began. (Barthes, R., Death of the Author)”

… and in the further analysis of the concept, the power relations I’ve mentioned above, I referred to the Czech director’s short movie Dimensions of Dialogue, below. All of Svankmajer’s movies are worth watching, if you haven’t yet, now’ll be a good startpoint.



“Postcards from a Green Future” depicts an insightful peep into an unrevealed spectacle. Though the beautiful images are so very indicative of a sustainably green future, a certain element of disarray still prevails owing to unspecific boundaries that are supposed to exist in the future. Both the artists, Liam Young form Tomorrow’s Thoughts Today and Darryl Chen, have remained as secretive as they could be in their projections.


The postcards attracted my attention mostly because of my graduation project, which my few last entries were also relevant to. My project covers a utopian narrative of a city, with different zones, all recycling themselves and the other zones in the city that they’re related to within a garden like environment. I was influenced, ideally, by the garden-city utopia of Le Corbusier; it’s about the possibility and sustainability of a dense setting in a park/garden city. To make the city dense yet less crowded is defined in his utopia as ascending or growing vertically; hightening the buildings yet now they’re far away from one another, different from the settling in these above and below scenes of a green future.

“These speculative scenes of “a green future” show us an over-the-top, solar-powered utopia of detached single-family houses and wind turbines, woven together with light rail and renewable energy technologies; it’s an Eden of sprawl spreading out into London’s most distant scattered cityscape.”

la ville contemporaine

This reminded me naturally of Le Corbusier’s La Ville Contemporaine, which I found not really feasible for the already alienating modern society. He proposes a 3-million populated urbanization within a park. That clearly why it’s utopic since there are hundreds of meters of distance between the buildings which renders neighborhood and socialization impossible; and leaves public space as a rotten concept. (below are the images)

Zaha Hadid was born in Iraq, studied at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London in which later she started teaching as an Instructor, in architecture. Later was she became an honorary member of the American Society of Architects. A great story of success she experience in the arena of architecture, she recieved a lot of prices until she came to a state of being referred as a modernist architecture through her references from futuristic paintings and painters in her architectural works. Her architectural drawings are counted as artworks or paintings to be more clear, by many, rather than being technical drawings.

Two competing sides of modernism in architecture can be called as the Bauhaus and the avant-garde De Stijl in Russia, which Hadid’s framework is more referring to. De Stijl, compared to the industrial-based Bauhaus, is more aiming for creating new radical forms for and of a society. Malevich, being a headliner in this arena, is one of the biggest influences on Hadid’s early drawings.

Malevich's Arkitekton,1923

Malevich is the creator of the Suprematist movement in painting. His abstraction was in a higly mode of “change”, a spiritual change we are mostly talking about. Hadid was strongly amused by this suprematism, about which she has written her thesis, as a beginning point, choosing her territory as London, where she educated herself.  “Placing it along and across the Thames in central London, she left no doubt—to the cognoscenti, at least—as to her ideological position: she was reviving a neglected, almost stillborn modernist ideal and inserting it into the contemporary world.”

Hadid- Malevich's Tektonik London Project,1977

Zaha Hadid, Office Building, Berlin, 1986
Zaha Hadid, Vitra Firestation design stidy, 1990


“The change in Zaha Hadid’s drawings—fragmentation giving way to fluid form—was already evident in her drawings analyzing the farming landscape around the Vitra factory site for the Firestation project. These impart a linear dynamic that comes together in the powerful thrust of the little building. The vision here is no longer about breaking up and scattering. Rather, it is about gathering together and directing. It is also about the making of unified, and unifying, forms. As with other questions about which she has given no explanation or insight, we are left to puzzle out the reasons for this change in her drawings and the designs they describe.”

— Lebbeus Woods


” The instant city is an urban intervention in a rural town. A zeppelin floats into town, hooks into the center and bombards the town with art, events, temporary structures, media infrastructure such as billboards, projectors and screens, and other stimulations, then eventually drifts off after installing a wide range of communications infrastructure that hooks the town into the new urban network. The intention being intensive and deliberate cultural urbanisation.

Instant City is a mobile technological event that drifts into underdeveloped, drab towns via air (balloons) with provisional structures (performance spaces) in tow. The effect is a deliberate overstimulation to produce mass culture, with an embrace of advertising aesthetics. The whole endeavor is intended to eventually move on leaving behind advanced technology hook-ups. “


The Walking City was an idea proposed by British architect Ron Herron in 1964. In an article in avant-garde architecture journal Archigram, Ron Herron proposed building massive mobile robotic structures, with their own intelligence, that could freely roam the world, moving to wherever their resources or manufacturing abilities were needed. Various walking cities could interconnect with each other to form larger ‘walking metropolises’ when needed, and then disperse when their concentrated power was no longer necessary. Individual buildings or structures could also be mobile, moving wherever their owner wanted or needs dictated.”

British architect Ron Herron in 1964 suggested an idea called, “The Walking City”. The Walking City is a gigantic mobile structure which would behave like an automated robot. Guided by artificial intelligence, it would roam to areas where required resources are located; moving to suit the needs of its owner. These cities can interconnect to form larger cities when needed.

For Archigram, mobility was important and omnipresent, even for the urban landscape that became a “Walking City”. Buildings can form new clusters anywhere to deal with the changing demands of a city. Yesterday’s offices could change into tomorrow’s museums and kindergardens.


Plug-In City, project, Axonometric

Peter Cook, a founding member of Archigram, was instrumental in fostering the British counterculture in the 1960s. He promoted the view that the preceding modernist period’s functionalist architecture was worn out. His proposed remedy, the Plug-in City, was a visionary urban megastructure incorporating residences, access routes, and essential services for its inhabitants. Intended to accommodate and encourage changes necessitated by obsolescence, on an as-needed basis, the building nodes (houses, offices, supermarkets, universities), each with a different lifespan, would plug into a main “craneway”, itself designed to last only forty years. The overall flexible and impermanent form would thus reflect the needs and collective will of the inhabitants.



Cities as living organisms

Plug-in city, Peter Cook

Fumihiko Maki, Golgi Structure, 1967. Digital photograph of model. Courtesy of Maki and Associates.