How big is bad? - Charles Jencks →
“In the mid-’70s, I tried to wrestle with this question and formulated a law of architecture that explains why the bigger corporate modernism gets, the more boring it usually gets. I called this ‘the Ivan Illich Law of Diminishing Architecture’, after the man who discovered counter-productive growth in other fields.”
Koolhaas - Theory of Bigness
1. Beyond a certain critical mass, a building becomes a Big Building. Such a mass can no longer be controlled by a single architectural gesture, or even by any combination of architectural gestures. This impossibility triggers the autonomy of its parts, but that is not the same as fragmentation: the parts remain committed to the whole. 2. The elevator—with its potential to establish...
Can a project exist that is capable of integrating and at the same time subverting the architectural banality that capitalist tactics seem to elicit? And how might it eliminate the polarized professional positions of “resistance” and “integration” - both of which are concepts remaining from a modernist demagogy that is scarcely relevant in a world dominated by global...
Chemical Archives →
For Caren - “The idea of a poisonous atmospheric archive being unintentionally released—on a global scale—makes me wonder what sorts of news reports we might read in several thousand years’ time, when carbon tombs start to leak their quarantined contents back into the atmosphere. The buried skies of an industrial era, put to pharaonic rest beneath the earth’s surface, will make...
Soft Robots →
A Game-Theoretic Analysis of Skyscrapers →
“The standard urban model emphasizes differentials in access across locations, which determine land price differentials and building heights. This explanation leaves out an important force that appears to have historically influenced skyscraper construction: an inherent value placed on being the tallest.”
Skyscraper Index →
“A 1995 analysis of New York and Chicago experience by Carol Willis estimated that historically, two-thirds to three-quarters of skyscrapers were conceived for rent alone; corporate “edifices” imposing their owners brand name (including most of historical record-holders) were a minority, and they too leased space to tenants.”
Skyscrapers and Business Cycles →
“Architecture simply doesn’t count…. With pitifully few exceptions in the past, New York’s skyscrapers have never reached for anything but money.”
Towers of Debt →
Redesigning Hell →
The title says it all.
Controlling the weather in China →
The World's Top 10 Ugliest Buildings →
Port Authority Bus Terminal comes in at an impressive #5.