Hans Hollein died on April 24th 2014.
Hans Hollein, operated along the tenuous line between sculpture and architecture whilst being conscious of the changing definition of what we call our environment.
He argued that ‘architects have to stop thinking in terms of buildings only’ because, for him, ‘everything is architecture’ and what we call our environment has expanded.
In 1963, together with Walter Pichler, about ‘Forms and Designs’, Hans Hollein wrote:
“In architecture we are not concerned with beauty. If we want beauty then we want it less in form or proportion than in a sensual beauty of fundamental power.
“The shape of the building doesn’t develop out of the material condition of its purpose. A building shall not show its purpose. It is not an expression of structure and construction, it is not an enclosure or refuge.
“A building is itself.
“Architecture is without purpose.
“What we build will find its usefulness.
“Form does not follow function. Form doesn’t originate by itself. It is the great decision of man to make a building into a cube, a pyramid or a sphere.
“Today for the first time in the history of mankind, at this moment when immensely developed science and perfected technology offer the means, we are building what we want, making an architecture that is not determined by technique, but that uses technique – pure, absolute architecture.
Today, man is master over infinite space”.
more about Hans Hollein’s work on his website here
On the use of orthographic drawings by Morphosis: the case of the self-built 2-4-6-8 House by Morphosis, complete with assembly instructions.
Axonometrics are used to describe the construction method, as they are is deemed easier to understand. Here they show how the different parts are assembled.
The project also combines plan, reflected ceiling plan, unfolded elevations, axonometric and the additional perspective on a single drawing (first drawing below), thus using the quasi-full palette of traditional conventional architectural drawings on the same page, whilst, surprisingly perhaps, avoiding the cross section (though the plan of course is a section).
The house is one of Morphosis early projects (1978) and can be found, alongside many others, on their research/archive website: morphopedia
description of the project from morphopedia:
“Venice Beach, the context for much of our early work, is one of the few places in Los Angeles with a thriving and eclectic street life. The 2-4-6-8 House gave voice to this happenstantial quality, inflected by the serendipity and combustibility of Venice street life. A sense of play animates the 2-4-6-8 House. Variations on window sizes form the conceptual genesis for the project. A simple cube with a pyramidal roof, the exterior is clad in gray asphalt shingles, while the windows’ yellow cross, blue lintel, and red scupper inject a joyous note of color. The project was schematized in a Revell-model-like that detailed each aspect of its construction in a form any layperson could comprehend. To enhance this playful, do-it-yourself quality, the client was given pocket-sized working drawings. Within the finished space, ventilation and heating are manually operated through gadgets that beckon to be fiddled with.”
“Ennio Brion recounts that Scarpa claimed to be designing the Brion project even in his sleep, fulfilling Gio Ponti’s aphorism that gardens should be based not on designs but on dreams. The Brion sanctuary demonstrates that it may be possible and even desirable to dissolve the distinction between the world we dream and the one in which we dwell or, in the case of Scarpa and the Brion sanctuary, between desiring landscapes and landscapes of desire.”
Dodds, G. (2002) Desiring Landscapes / Landscapes of Desire, in Body and Buildings: Essays on the changing relation of body and architecture, Dodds, G. and Tavernor, R. Eds, MIT Press
Shin Takamatsu’s monumental architecture.
“Speaking in short Japanese sentences, he told of his father, a fisherman, who distrusted people who talked too much, for they scared the fish away. Or as Shin added: ‘Architecture says more than words. I think I should vanish from the site now…’ A very humble attitude for a man who usually makes large, monumental architecture.”
Extract from this site: http://www.classic.archined.nl/news/0202/shin_eng.html
and here for an 80’s video of one of his lectures at Sci-Arc (clearly not a digital recording but you still get to see some of the work)
and a review of Takamtsu’s exhibition and thoughts about technology
Chris Macdonald and Peter Salter ICI Trade Pavilion, at the Royal Agricultural Showground, Stoneleigh, England, 1983
images and text below from Lebbeus Woods blog
“Once upon a time, before computers came to be the pre-eminent architectural design tool, architects made drawings by hand. Instead of leaving it up to the computer’s software to make and assemble the lines defining contours and edges of forms, architects would draw line by line, gradually building up the drawing.”
and even if you do use the computer today, it is important to remember that you are drawing the building, and not the computer…
an interesting archive by Robert A-Gorny : Anti-Vitruv & Super Brunelleschi blog. do take a look.
here is an plan from the blog: Alison and Peter Smithson, Coventry Church Competition Design, Plan, England, 1951
plan for the refurbishment of Mercader street Appartment by Enric Miralles and Benedetta Tagliabue:
includes various floor finishes and bespoke pieces of furniture. From El Croquis 1983-2000
Below is an extract of Raimund Abraham’s article published in Design Quaterly 122, under the heading of “The Meaning of Place in Art and Architecture”, published in 1983.
After refuting the opposition of Art and Architecture, and introducing the idea of site using Charles Olson’s critical study of Melville’s Moby Dick, Abraham writes :
“I believe that where the sky and the earth collide, elements of the earth and the sky produce an intervention – the first architectural event. […]
Architectural space can only be understood as a polarity between physiological space and geometric space. Physiological space is limited to sensory experience; geometric space is the pure invention of our mind , reflecting upon the infinite.
I believe there is a very definite limit to geometry as the idealized language of architecture, and I believe that geometry alone can never produce an architectural idea. Because I think architecture has memory, as this memory is imprinted in the history of matter, geometry can only be a device to idealize it.
Geometry has no memory. Geometry can only produce an architectural idea and not an architectural event. ”
These words resonate with discussions we’ve had in the studio. I subsequently did a bit more research on the internet and found this brilliant article by Geoff Manaugh (from BLDBLG) on the Canadian Centre for Architecture website:
The article is titled ‘I’m exposing matter to the forces of time.’
There he talks about collisions and confrontations in architecture, not least in the process of building, and how Abraham’s architecture is ultimately poetic, imbued with myth and individuality.
‘House without Rooms’
Church on the Berlin Wall
‘House Without Rooms’
‘City of Twofold Vision’
extract from Miralles 1983-2000, El Croquis, 2000