modernism


Darryl Chen, 11 06 13


Darryl Chen will be joining the final Failed Architecture event of the season. Also on the panel will be Ole Bouman, Matthias Bottger, Arjen Oosterman and Mark Studholme moving beyond ruin porn and blind futurism to discuss the benefits of failure.

Date: Thursday, June 13, 2013
Time: 20:00 – 23:00 (19:00 doors open)
Location: TrouwAmsterdam
Address: Wibautstraat 127, Amsterdam (more…)

modernism


Darryl Chen, 27 04 09


Everyone knows Golden Lane from the Smithsons, right? We’re talking streets in the sky and those great collages of convivial couples on elevated walkways. Well, it joins the ranks of architecture’s Most Famous Second-Place-Getters eclipsing the actual built scheme. It’s a pity that hardly anyone knows much about the architects who came first – Chamberlin, Powell and Bon, who are otherwise known for the ground- and rule-breaking Barbican development next door. Even fewer would care to realize that the Barbican’s high walkways represent a successful (!) and built (!) example of those streets in the sky. Maybe, those kinds of concepts are best remembered in the imaginary and speculative world of architectural competitions than actual physical realities. Plus, the Smithsons (three noteworthy leaking buildings and a crapload of dogma) are untouchable, aren’t they…? (more…)

modernism


Darryl Chen, 24 03 09


Futurology, future-casting or futurism (with a little ‘f’) used to be a serious business. Now it’s just become business. (more…)

modernism


Darryl Chen, 19 08 08


 

Brasilia’s six-lane motorways embrace yesterday’s promise of the speeding automobile that even taxis suffer. They stop far too often. Forget flagging a cab – you really need a driver. So it should come as no surprise that Niemeyer’s Metropolitan Cathedral at the heart of Brasilia’s central axis is planned around an undergound drop-off lane and subterranean carpark. That leaves just the spectacular roof crown visible above ground, as well as a colonnade of statues aligning a pedestrian axis that goes nowhere. (I said, you are supposed to arrive by car.) Coroporate worship meets the autobahn… Aqui há invenção! 

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modernism


Darryl Chen, 21 07 08


OSCAR NIEMEYER WANTS — the big gesture. the curve of the land. the sensuousness of the female body. the purity of form. the aesthetic experience. the freedom of space.
[The result ---- the master architect. the icon. the averagely-detailed one-liner. impressive from fifty metres, average from five]

LINA BO BARDI WANTS — subversion of society’s repressive structures. art to be sociable. recreation to be productive. the user to know their place in the world.
[The result --- ungainly structures. social condensers. buildings that become more meaningful with inhabitation]

modernism


Darryl Chen, 21 07 08


Today we are ruled by a tyranny of the new. An unflagging faith in progress has been a hallmark of pioneer Modernists of the early 20th century – and even earlier – and this is as felt now as ever given the speed at which we interact with our culture. (Speed it can be argued has even given way to the instantaneous). How the works of our hands will be judged by future generations is told in how our culture values past works of architecture that were performed with the same spirit of freshness and progress.

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