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December 4, 2006

architecture, a complex meaning

From Tuesday’s lecture I came to understand a new side of architecture: that of the virtual and informational realm. Emotions, relationships, feelings, desires, information, and ideas have so much more to do with architecture than I had previously considered. Ozayr’s definition of virtual reality as “designed dreams,? I believe to be very fitting towards Louis Kahn’s lecture and Neil Gershenfeld’s lectures.
Gershenfeld’s class at MIT quite literally designs dreams and therefore creates virtual reality. He explains that Information has become a huge realm of our world more so today than ever before. Physical things are made from information and with information. Knowledge is built into material that tells it how to construct itself and ultimately recycle itself upon destruction. Paradigms have been shifted from mass production to uniqueness in a building or product. The products are no longer supplied to the masses but are now being replaced by instructions, information, and tools to allow them to create their own products. This is because no person likes a product in the same manor. Ever person has their own uniqueness and should be able to create whatever they like. Gershenfeld’s class emphasizes that their fab labs create products on a “one-market based user: the creator.? Any given person’s dreams can be designed with the fab labs, and by using information and tools, virtual reality is created.
Kahn, in his Silence and Light lecture, emphasizes very much on relationships and ideas as a bases for architecture. He indirectly describes architectural works as designed dreams through all of his philosophies on what architecture really is. His first section in particular examined the idea of light as the “giver of all presences.? We depend on light to be able to see and appreciate architectural works.
Architectural works to Kahn are designed dreams that come to life first through the mind and then into actual presence. People have the desires to live and express themselves through art, which he says is the highest form of expression because it is “the least definable.? Architecture never began through practical issues so much as through the mere feeling of having a world within a world. On a different note than Gereshenfeld, Ideas and feelings are the things that create designed dreams, not information.
It is to my understanding that architecture is neither solely information based, nor solely idea and relationship based. Architecture is created through the relationship of both of these things. Architecture must be built through the mind with conscious consideration of relationships such as light, columns and other structures, and nature. It should never be built within the constraints of mass production because architecture is always an expression. Each client should be held on a case to case bases and never treated the same way as we all want different things. I find fab labs quite useful in their philosophies of the one creator as the market based user. I agree that architecture never began to be built for practical purposes but for the feeling to be “in a world within a world.? (Kahn) I would then go as far as to say architecture fits into the physical realm and the mental realm, but is largely if not all within the realm of virtual reality and information.