Built upon Love

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2008-04-30
  • Publisher: Mit Pr
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In Built upon LovePérez-Gómez uncovers the relationship between love and architecture in order to find the points of contact between poetics and ethics--between the architect's wish to design a beautiful world and architecture's imperative to provide a better place for society. The forced polarity between form and function in considerations of architecture--opposing art to social interests, ethics to poetic expression--obscures the deep connections between ethical and poetical values in architectural tradition. Architecture has been, and must continue to be, writes Alberto Pérez-Gómez, built upon love. Modernity has rightly rejected past architectural excesses, but, Pérez-Gómez argues, the materialistic and technological alternatives it proposes do not answer satisfactorily the complex desire that defines humanity. True architecture is concerned with far more than fashionable form, affordable homes, and sustainable development; it responds to a desire for an eloquent place to dwell--one that lovingly provides a sense of order resonant with our dreams. Eros, as first imagined by the early lyric poets of classical Greece, is the invisible force at the root of our capacity to create and comprehend the poetic image. Pérez-Gómez examines the nature of architectural form in the light of eros, seduction, and the tradition of the poetic image in Western architecture. He charts the ethical dimension of architecture, tracing the connections between philia--the love of friends that entails mutual responsibility among equals--and architectural program. He explores the position of architecture at the limits of language and discusses the analogical language of philiain modernist architectural theory. Finally, he uncovers connections between ethics and poetics, describing a contemporary practice of architecture under the sign of love, incorporating both erosand philia.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Opening conversationp. 1
Introduction: Architecture and Human Desirep. 3
Historical origins of eros and philiap. 7
Eros, Seduction, and the Poetic Image in Architecture: Formp. 9
Eros and Creationp. 11
Opening conversationp. 11
Primordial Erosp. 12
Eros as creative power in classical philosophyp. 14
Renaissance incorporationsp. 16
Modern transformationsp. 20
Orphic Eros in late modernityp. 25
Inspiration in contemporary praxisp. 28
Eros and Limitsp. 31
Opening conversationp. 31
Eros, spacing, and jointsp. 32
Erotic space and the origins of Western culturep. 36
Erotic architectural space in the Hypnerotomachia Poliphilip. 39
Chora as erotic spacep. 44
Renaissance incorporationsp. 51
Modern transformationsp. 56
Eros and timep. 65
Eros and the Poetic Imagep. 69
Opening conversationp. 69
Originsp. 71
Marsilio Ficino and the poetic image in the Renaissancep. 73
The poetic image in Renaissance theoryp. 79
Modern transformationsp. 81
The poetic image in modernityp. 94
From Lequeu to Duchampp. 101
Frederick Kiesler's endless architecturep. 104
Daniel Libeskind's Jewish Museump. 105
The poetic image in the contemporary worldp. 107
Interlude: Eros, Philia, and Agapep. 111
Eros and recognitionp. 111
Philia, ethics, and communionp. 118
Philia, eros, and agapep. 120
Philia, Compassion, and the Ethical Dimension of Architecture: Programp. 123
Opening conversationp. 123
Philia, Ritual, and Decorump. 125
Originsp. 125
From decorum to characterp. 133
Architecture at the Limits of Languagep. 137
Opening conversationp. 137
Language and architecturep. 139
Architecture as languagep. 143
The Language of Philia in Architectural Theoryp. 147
Vitruvian theoryp. 147
The sequelp. 153
A Tale of Two Brothers: Jean-Louis and Charles-Francois Vielp. 167
The poetic architecture of Jean-Louis Vielp. 168
The political architecture of Charles-Francois Vielp. 173
Interweavingsp. 184
Poetry and Meaning from within a (Western) Architectural Traditionp. 187
Opening conversationp. 187
Architecture from withinp. 187
Architecture as poetic writingp. 192
Architecture as critical poemp. 196
The Ethical Image in Architecturep. 203
Opening conversationp. 203
Hermeneutics and ethical intentionsp. 204
On endless desirep. 211
Notesp. 215
Indexp. 243
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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