“…simple closed curves which divide the plane into two regions: an interior and an exterior. in everyday use, the term “circle” may be used interchangeably to refer to either the boundary of the figure, or to the whole figure including its interior; in strict technical usage, the circle is the former and the latter is called a disk.”

16/07/2012 § 1 Comment

tezuka architects, fuji kindergarten (2007)

 

let’ s be clear: this is not a circle.  but its close.  maybe it was last weeks posts about circles, and spirals and u, but i have noticed a lot of circles in contemporary architecture.  see here, here, here, here, here, and i’m sure many more places.  are we slowly moving back to pure euclidean geometry?

anyways, this building is more than just a squished circle.  its a park on top of a kindergarten.

 

seeing circles

a young hare

 

 

notes:

[title]     today’s title comes from a wiki entry on circles.  deep, right?

[image]     today’s image comes from somewhere on the internet.  can’t remember where exactly.

“they say there’s nothing more difficult than to define a spiral in words; they claim it’s necessary to use the unliterary hand, twirling it in a steadily upward direction, so that human eyes will perceive the abstract figure immanent in a wire spring and a certain type of staircase. but if we remember that to say is to renew, we will have no trouble defining a spiral: it’s a circle that rises without ever closing.” fernando pessoa [1]

13/07/2012 § Leave a comment

toyo ito, white u (1976)

 

yesterday’s post concerned circles and mindless task of drawing.  so, while on the subject of circles and the act of doing: a u is a circle split with both ends pulled away and held parallel to each other.  white u is a house which no longer exists.  more specifically: it was a house designed by toyo ito for his grieving sister who’s husband had recently passed away.  less specifically: it was a white circle split with both ends pulled away and held parallel to each other, never to intersect again.  currently: white u is a set of images disintegrating under the process of print, scan, post, repeat.

 

 

a year ago (plus or minus a week), i made a promise (which claudette recently reminded me of, thanks!) to print, scan, post, repeat.  a process that has no serious goal in sight, other than the task of seeing what will happen and i’m pretty sure i know what will happen.  which reminds me:

“look,” said rumfoord, “life for a punctual person is a like a roller coaster.”  he turned to shiver his hands in her face.  “all kinds of things are going to happen to you!  sure,” he said, “i can see the whole roller coaster you’re on.  and sure – i could give you a piece of paper that would tell you about every bogeyman that was going to pop out at you in the tunnels.  but that wouldn’t help you any.” [2]

the fun part is doing, because while this process is cyclical, the result is more of a spiral than a circle.  this process is not a closed circuit; each iteration loops away from the origin.  i’ve already begun to notice small bits of information disappearing or maybe another way to think of it would be, the noise is starting to fade and the sentiment is coming forward.

 

 

this time around, as the white light of the scanner passed over the freshly dried ink of the 8.5×11 sheets of paper, i began to think about a recent lecture i read by john sarkowski concerning journalistic photography.  at one point he said:

the history of photography as a radical picture making system, can be defined as the history of the definition of new subjects.  sometimes these new subjects are extensions of ideas that exist in latent form in the work of exceptional photographers of an earlier generation.  sometimes they are genuinely primitive ideas mothered by a new technical breakthrough or a new market demand.  but in either case, the picture’s new meaning and its new appearance are the same. [3]

there seems to be a new subject arising today in photography: scanned imagery.  every day images in books, catalogues whatever are being uploaded to blogs, tumblrs, twitter, facebook, whatever.  point being, we are all essentially photographing photographs.  which might mean we are all following in the footsteps of sherrie levines [4] but then again it feels like we are also circling away from her.

 

spiraling controllably

a young hare

 

 

notes:

[1]     Pessoa, Fernando. The Book of Disquiet. [s.l.]: Penguin, 2003. P: 107. Print.

[2]     Vonnegut, Kurt. The Sirens of Titan. London: Millenium, 1999. P: 54.  Print.

[3]     for the entire lecture check out this american suburb x post.

[4]     specifically after walker evans.

[images]     the original photographs were taken from this toyo ito monograph:  Scheider, Ulrich, Hayakema Sakamao, Manfred Speikl, and Toyo Ito. Toyo Ito: Blurring Architecture 1971-2005. Milan: Charta, 1999. Print.

“the following things in the room were blue. the blue checks in the blue-and-black-checked shag carpet…. two of the unsettling attached lamps that kept its magazines unread and neatly fanned were blue, although the two blue lamps were not the lamps attached to the two blue chairs. dr. charles tavis liked to say that you could tell a lot about an administrator by the decor of his waiting room…. the premie violets in an asymmetrical sprig in a tennis-ball-shaped vase on the coffee-table were arguably in the blue family.” – david foster wallace [1]

11/07/2012 § 2 Comments

horace benedict de saussure, cyanometer (c1760)

misha de ridder, wissen brunnen (2009)

florian maier aichen, the best general view (2007)

unknown, maly semyachik  (date unknown) (via)

fabian schuber, hank schmidt in der beek painting in the zillertal alps (2009)

merel van den berg, the marker project (2009)

yutaka yoshinaga, 96-c-5 (1996)

david ireland, folded paper landscape (1973)

guillermo kuitca, neufert suite (sausage factory equipment) (1999)

casa, hakuei residence (1996)

xdga, house in brasschaat (1990-92)

benthem crouwel, schipol airport (date unknown) (via)

photographer unknown, thierry mugler residence (1981) (via 2thewalls)

maarten van severen, blauwe bank (1997)

 

bas jan ader made a point of only wearing international klein blue.  the color blue which artist yves klein patented and used through out his art works.  sometime between learning about bas jan ader and yves klein i came across horace benedict de saussure’s cyanometer.  horace created the cyanometer as a way of measuring the blueness of the sky in order to test a theory about the blueness of the sky being related to the moisture content of the air [2].  then last week, while catching up on radiolab podcasts i found out that (broadly speaking) according to philologists, red is always the first color to appear in a human language and blue is (usually) always the last color to appear in a human language.  weird.  so i decided to make a tumblr of blue themed images.  and inspired by horace benedict de saussure it presents a gamut of blues.  blues captured by cameras, painted on to a surface, fading away, washing buildings, and coloring furniture.

 

what would you add?  send ayounghare [at] gmail one or a few blue images [3].  if there are enough responses i could make a second blue tumblr post.

 

what is it about blue?

a young hare

 

 

notes:

[1]     wallace, david foster. infinite jest: a novel. boston: back bay books, 1996: p. 508 – 509. print

[2]     for more on the topic of blue and horace benedict de saussure check out this article on the royal society of chemistry’s website.

[3]     oh, the silly things we have to do to avoid spam bots.

[more series, more color]     this marks the third time ayh has presented a tumblr post.  previous posts involved the making of a plan and an ode to a gamut of reds inspired by the then pantone color of the year – honeysuckle.

“appropriate links provide instant pathways to locations within and outside the project that are likely to increase readers’ understanding of the topic at hand. when writing or editing an article, it is important to consider not only what to put in the article, but what links to include to help the reader find related information, as well as which other pages should carry links to the article. care should be taken to avoid both underlinking and overlinking, as described below.”

10/07/2012 § 1 Comment

photography:  deconcrete (2012)
installation:  francisco lopez, mies pavilion – sonar 2012 (2012)

 

you may have noticed the growing blogroll to your right… okay,  maybe not.  anyways, yesterday’s mention of the blog centre for the aesthetic revolution reminded me that i’ve been meaning to add more links to ayh.  here goes a first push:

 

mammoth – a great blog covering urbanism, infrastructure, landscape and all the hybrids between.  a recent favorite post involved the unintended deep swimming hole in indiana created by the empire state building.

deconcrete – in a similar vein to mammoth, deconcrete focuses on the politics of the built environment involving urbanism, infrastructure, architecture, and more.  i can’t remember when i first came across this blog, but whoever manages to connect jacuzzi bubbles to economic bubbles has to be brilliant.  they’ve also been involved, as well as, documenting some great projects occurring throughout europe – today’s image comes from deconcrete’s lense.

pruned – there’s a theme developing here.  pruned covers issues of landscape architecture and more.  it was dormant for a while, but they seem to be back!  a recent post on the old tradition of flooding piazza navona is a great reminder of what urban space can become and how we need to revive the past.

kuu – breaking this landscape + urbanism trend is a simple blog by the shanghai base architecture firm kuu.  this has become a constant source of simple, but powerful images, thoughts and architecture.  point in case: a post on a young sejima’s manifesto and a beautiful house in singapore.

centre for the aesthetic revolution – previously mentioned above and yesterday.  this great blog covers latin american artists in galleries across europe and latin america.  here are a couple of posts documenting the events/exhibitions at el eco.

 

phew.  that’s it for now.  more to come later in july.

 

instant pathways

a young hare

 

 

notes:

[title]     today’s title comes from wikipedia’s page on the guidelines for linking.  i suppose it makes sense that they would have a page on the etiquette of linking and pitfalls of over/underlinking.  please don’t over link or under link.

[image]     as noted above, today’s image comes from deconcrete’s post on partytopias.

“returning to the building program, it becomes apparent that these individual boxes, much like the compartments of a bento box, do not necessitate a particular program – bedroom or laundry room, rice or pickled radish. while each building has been demarcated with a particular program in the plans of the complex, these are by no means definitive, as earlier renditions of the plan indicate.”

22/08/2011 § Leave a comment

nicolas allinder, diagrams of moriyama house (2010)

 

chopsticks at the ready, moriyama house is a bento box with individual pristine and paper-thin containers carefully laid out on the table of a tokyo block.  in contrast, imagine the traditional japanese house as a bento box in its pre-consumption state, well-stacked and organized in a perceptibly rational and efficient manner.  ryue nishizawa’s moriyama house is a fragmented set of simple, unadorned structures whose interior space and program, much like a skyscraper, is unapparent from the exterior.  therefore in order to understand the moriyama house, one must focus on the layout, each individual building’s program, and the structure and envelope of the buildings.

 

pre- or post-consumption?

a young hare

 

 

notes:

[title, images and text]    all come from an analysis of the moriyama house produced by nicolas allinder.

“anonymity is compensated for by a certain number of expedients (at least this is how they look to us), whose combination forms a system. one can figure out the address by a (written or printed) schema of orientation…”

19/08/2011 § Leave a comment

nicolas allinder, moriyama house site context (2010)

 

the streets of this city have no names.  there is of course a written address, but it has only a postal value, it refers to a plan (by districts and by blocks, in no way geometric), knowledge of which is accessible to the postman, not to the visitor: the largest city in the world is practically unclassified, the spaces which compose it in detail are unnamed.  this domiciliary obliteration seems inconvenient to those (like us) who have been used to asserting that the most practical is always the most rational (a principle by virtue of which the best urban toponymy would be that of numbered streets, as in the united states or in kyoto, a chinese city).  tokyo meanwhile reminds us that the rational is merely one system among others.  for there to be a mastery of the real (in this case, the reality of addresses), it suffices that there be a system, even if this system is apparently illogical, uselessly complicated, curiously disparate: a good bricolage can not only work for a very long time, as we know; it can also satisfy millions of inhabitants inured, furthermore, to all the perfections of technological civilization.

anonymity is compensated for by a certain number of expedients (at least this is how they look to us), whose  combination forms a system.  one can figure out the address by a (written or printed) schema of orientation, a kind of geographical summary which situates the domicile starting from a known landmark; a train station, for instance.  (the inhabitants excel in these impromptu drawings, where we see being sketched, right on the scrap of paper, a street, an apartment house, a canal, a railroad line, a shop sign, making the exchange of addresses into a delicate communication in which a life of the body, an art of the graphic gesture recurs: it is always enjoyable to watch someone write,a ll the more so to watch someone draw: from each occasion when someone has given me an address in this way, i retain the gesture of my interlocutor reversing his pencil to rub out, with the eraser at its other end, the excessive curve of an avenue, the intersection of a viaduct; though the eraser is an object contrary to the graphic tradition of japan, this gesture still produced something peaceful, something caressing and certain, as if, even in this trivial action, the body “labored with more reserve than the mind,” according to the precept of the actor zeami; the fabrication of the address greatly prevailed over the address itself, and, fascinated, i could have hoped it would take hours to give me that address.)  you can also, provided you already know where you are going, direct your taxi yourself, from street to street.  and finally, you can request the driver to let himself be guided by the remote visitor to whose house you are going, by means of one of those huge red telephones installed in front of almost every shop in the street.  all this makes the visual experience a decisive element of your orientation: a banal enough proposition with regard to the jungle or the bush, but one much less so with regard to a major modern city, knowledge of which is usually managed by map, guide, telephone book; in a word, by printed culture and not gestural practice.  here, on the contrary, domiciliation is sustained by no abstraction; except for the land survey, it is only a pure contingency: much more factual than legal, it ceases to assert the conjunction of an identity and a property.  this city can be known only by an activity of an ethnographic kind: you must orient yourself in it not by book, by address, but by walking, by sight, by habit, by experience; here every discovery is intense and fragile, it can be repeated or recovered only by memory of, the trace it has left in you: to visit a place for the first time is thereby to begin to write it: the address not being written, it must establish its own writing.

 

roland barthes’ essay no address has been on my from the moment i read it several years ago.

 

how do you piece together place

a young hare

 

 

notes:

[title]     today’s title and essay come from:

Barthes, Roland, and Richard (Schriftsteller) Howard. Empire of Signs. New York: Hill and Wang, 1982. Print.

[image]     today’s image was created by a young hare and inspired by the work of armelle caron.

“the knowledge gained through still photographs will always be some kind of sentimentalism, whether cynical or humanist. it will be a knowledge at bargain prices – a semblance of knowledge, a semblance of wisdom; as the act of taking pictures is a semblance of appropriation, a semblance of rape.” – susan sontag [1]

08/07/2011 § 4 Comments

toyo ito, white u (1976)

 

wednesday cy twombly died.  i’ll spare you my average interaction with the artists work and direct you straight into the arms of greg allen who wrote a nice piece about cy twombly’s impact on his own life.  though as a quick note: if you happen to be in houston, texas, visit the menil collection which has not only the rothko chapel, but the ethereal cy twombly pavilion.  i assume greg visited the menil before the cy twombly pavilion existed.  greg writes about his interaction with cy and how this experience fostered an appreciation for living artists.  he ends on a rather poignant note stating:

maybe it’s being involved with art of our time–of my time–that came into focus that day.  the artists whose work we admire, the people whose ideas influence us, are around for a while, and we can engage them.   and then at some point, they’re gone, and we’re left with just their works and their words.  and with our own experiences and memories.

maybe it’s because last week’s posts concerned preservation but i’ve been thinking a lot recently about the relationship of people to art and architecture over time.  eva hesse’s work is slowly decomposing and soon all that will be left is the description of her pieces.  more than likely, future generations will come into contact with her work through the words of another person, giving their own take on the her work.

 



this idea of appropriation reminds me of another post a couple of weeks back about alteration through repetition and the game of telephone.  from the moment that llama pema spoke to the first person in the telephone line information was being lost, and continued to change as people passed on to the best of their memory (though some intentionally obfuscated) the phrase at hand.   accompanying the text to that essay was a series of photographs from sam jacob’s exercise with his students in which a description of an existing famous piece of furniture was given.  the person listening to the description would draw what was described.  the drawing was modeled and then 3-d printed.  the result was a series of mutant pieces of furniture oddly reminiscent of the original.  but as llama pema said at the end of the telephone game:

a central teaching of buddhism is that everything is ephemeral…. what salman [rushdie] read was one hundred per cent pure wrong.  yet there was one right word and that was the gist of the message.  in the end, the words were not my message – those got completely lost.  but it was very fascinating because coincidentally, accidentally, the listeners got the sentiment.  and then they created their own words.

while it could seem tragic that we are forever slowly drifting away from the original it’s refreshing to think of it as a continuous revival and reinvention and actually an appropriation (though not through rape, sorry susan sontag).  we connect closer to the object through the act of translation.

 

 

today’s post is also nod to my own past.  while at rolu i wrote about several things, one of which was all white japanese residential architecture.  at some point in time i came across white u.  a house designed by toyo ito for his grieving sister.  you can read more about that story here.  the important thing to know is the house is gone, demolished in the amazing way japanese culture goes about constantly destroying and rebuilding.  all that is left of white u is a series of photographs.  the photographs are deliriously whimsical, projecting a world outside of normal routine life experiences – unless you happen to be a small japanese girl running through a house shaped like a curving hallway.  there are no humanizing photos of bathrooms, bedrooms or kitchens.

when i discovered these photographs, i was at a university library.  being that i wasn’t a student i had to photocopy the images (the scanner was broken), bring them to the office, scan, and then post the images online.  it became this hilarious process in which the image of white u was altered.  so, today i decided to continue this process.  before re-posting these images i printed them, scanned them, and then posted them without adjusting the color levels.

 

 

i could see myself making this a yearly event.  slowly the images would change into something much more extreme.  middle tones will be lost.  whites will be whiter.  darks will be darker.  but maybe the spirit of toyo ito’s original thought, which he sketched, modeled, drew as plans and sections, possibly with the assistance of others interpreting his thoughts and intentions, and these technical drawings based on sketches of a thought were used to guide a crew of construction workers, and their finished product was eventually interpreted through photographs, which were eventually culled into a set of appropriate images for a monograph[2], which was then printed and shipped to minnesota and left on a shelf for several years, handled by students and professors during those several years, at which point i picked up the book and photocopied the images, scanned them and posted the images online, only to then download them, print them, scan them and post the images again at which point maybe in that mayhem of projections and translations from thought, to line, to wall, to photo, to glowing image nearly forty years later ito’s original thought is still visible in these worn images.

 

embrace the long sentence.

a young hare

 

 

notes

[1]     Sontag, Susan. On Photography. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1977. Print.

[2]     the monograph in this particular instance is:  Scheider, Ulrich, Hayakema Sakamao, Manfred Speikl, and Toyo Ito. Toyo Ito: Blurring Architecture 1971-2005. Milan: Charta, 1999. Print.

“kobe (神戸市 kōbe-shi) is the sixth-largest city in japan and is the capital city of hyōgo prefecture on the southern side of the main island of honshū, approximately 500 km (310.69 mi) west of tokyo.”

27/06/2011 § Leave a comment

hiroaki ohtani, layer house (2005)

 

somewhere in the streets of kobe, architect hiroaki ohtani built a better form of structuralism.

 

a good rhythm fades away

a young hare

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