Body and Building: Essays on the Changing Relation of Body by George Dodds, Robert Tavernor

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By George Dodds, Robert Tavernor

Due to the fact Greek antiquity, the human physique has been considered as a microcosm of common concord. during this ebook, a world team of architects, architectural historians, and theorists examines the relation of the human physique and structure. The essays view famous structures, texts, work, embellishes, and landscapes from the point of view of the body's actual, mental, and non secular wishes and pleasures. issues contain Greek temples; the church buildings of Tadao Ando in Japan; Renaissance fortresses and work; the physique, house, and living in Wright's and Schindler's homes in North the United States; the corporeal measurement of Carlo Scarpa's landscapes and gardens; concept from Vitruvius to the Renaissance and Enlightenment; and Freudian psychoanalysis. The essays are framed through an appreciation of architectural historian and theorist Joseph Rykwert's influential paintings at the topic.

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Historical and literary phenomena from non-European cultures, and a disinclination to privilege any one art form—or, for that matter, any one form of knowledge—over any other. ”19 Faithfully following this injunction, Rykwert took as his theme the curiously insistent and morally compelling idea of the origin of architecture. He explained first the extent to which such an apparently anachronistic idea has preoccupied some of the most notable of twentieth-century architects and then traced the complex lineage of the idea back through the centuries to antiquity.

MS. Cod. 126000, f. B. Vienna, twelfth century. 14 There is little doubt that the phenomenon of microcosm poses serious difficulties to modern thinking. Yet if we ignore the problematic speculations, the excessive level of mysticism, and the excessive physical or naturalistic analogies (such as “man’s hair is like a grass, his veins and arteries like rivers and canals and his bones like mountains”),15 then we are likely to be rewarded by a surprising richness and depth of understanding of the relation between the human body and the world—their common corporeality and meaning.

That is, like most of his contemporaries, he has lost confidence in the efficacy or legitimacy of grand intellectual systems or systematic social or historical projects. By the same token, he is of a generation that abandoned teleological notions of progress in history and has particularly eschewed any interest in the once apparently potent forms of instrumentality in human affairs. All this having been said, Rykwert’s oeuvre, given the formulation of his characteristic method described above, has nevertheless been deeply marked by his conviction as to the power of the subconscious in history—in some respects, even of a subconscious that in some sense is collective.

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