Category Archives: Creativity

Everything is Architecture…

Everything is Architecture: Bau Magazine from the 60s and 70s – An Exhibition at the ICA

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Some times there is a gap in the clouds and radical sunshine from the past shined through with surprising brightness. Perhaps it is indeed the case that a truly clear thought always holds its charge and can speak from the depths of the past with a sparkling relevance.

Hans Hollein and Walter Picher writing in 1962 penned a manifesto called ‘Absolute Architecture’ in which they declare, to paraphrase: that physically and psychically we repeat, transform and expand our physical and psychical sphere. We determine our “environment” in its widest sense. The spring board of this thought leads us down the walk way of fashion-is-architecture; jewellery-is-architecture; makeup-is-architecture and of course shoes-always-feel-like-architecture, a crossover already extensively explored by Zaha Hadid, Oscar Niemeyer and Julian Hakes. But this declaration goes further than just packaging the body either spatially or stylistically, it declares architecture as a way to communicate a new vision. The optimism of revolution is imbedded in this suggestion that everything is open to be restructured, or constructed in new and exciting ways. ‘Everything is Architecture’ is offering the possibility, that if only we could build our ideals and dreams then they would become real is tantalisingly attractive. This new ‘architecture of everything’ would offer a way to physical and psychological health, through the desired shelter and protection of society itself.

If everything is architecture, then we are all architects. This collapses the hierarchy and elitism of Architecture and suggests that we are all empowered with valid social visions and already have the skills to implement them. In todays context this sounds like the rallying cry for a social media movement, a sort of new build optimism where everything is constructed by the masses for the masses to quote the sci-fi film THX 1138. Twitter, Facebook and the internet have provided the architectural tools to empower people to consider new ways of building societies. The now fading ‘Arab spring’ seemed to offer a new architectural style, as have the new people’s movements such as Podemos in Spain and Syresia in Greece, who have only recently become  dampened and constrained by the uncomfortable realisation that money-is-also-architecture, and that those who already have it, often get to decide the form of what gets built. The rancorous public debate around Jeremey Corbyn’s leadership bid for the Labour party reveals how those already in power are horrified at possible new styles of building.

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www.uncubemagasine.com

So maybe the contradiction that undoes the brave new architectural world is embedded at the heart of the statement, lying dormant waiting to sabotage new building like a virus deep in a hard drive. All of us positive and negative ‘according to his needs and wishes uses the means necessary to satisfy these needs and to fulfil these dreams. He expands his body and his mind. He communicates. – ALLES IST ARCHITEKTUR.’ Indeed, unfortunately we do.

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Playing to the Gallery review – Grayson Perry delivers a passionate defence of art | Art and design | The Observer

Grayson on Patience

Playing to the Gallery review – Grayson Perry delivers a passionate defence of art | Art and design | The Observer.

A powerful defence of the act of creation, and of blurring categories …


Rebellion by design: when ceramics and textiles get radical – FT.com

 

 

Duncan Grant's studio at Charleston house Sussex UK

Duncan Grant’s studio at Charleston house Sussex UK

Rebellion by design: when ceramics and textiles get radical – FT.com

Design has shown a rebellious streak in recent months. At the opening of the Subversive Design exhibition at Brighton Museum and Art Gallery on England’s south coast late last year, curator Stella Beddoe defended the ability of applied and decorative arts to challenge convention and tackle serious social issues.   …

Oliver Winchester, chief curator of the Design Museum in London, cites Italian furniture design of the 1960s and 1970s as a hotbed of political thought. “Italy was always thinking about the object itself in antithesis to the American focus on mass production,” he says. In the museum’s permanent collection is the “AEO chair”, designed in 1973 by Paolo Deganello, co-founder of the Archizoom group in Florence. Deganello was not interested in beauty, but in comfort, hailing a new era of functional aesthetic in furniture design. “Each constituent part was designed to be as comfortable as possible,” says Winchester. “The focus is on putting the parts together, transferring the power of construction to the user.” By using a network of small-scale suppliers who would produce the individual parts of the chair, Deganello connected craftsmanship to mass production.

What Deganello shared with his contemporary designers was a desire to see the consumer actively participate in his politics. Italian designer Enzo Mari was also a proponent of the blueprint, producing self-assembly kits for chairs and beds throughout the 1970s. He was opposed to mass production and believed home furniture could be a statement of an individual’s social beliefs. “[Mari] was interested in the art of constructing furniture as a way of educating people and encouraging them to appreciate the art of manufacturing design,” says Winchester.

Michael Marriott, a London-based furniture designer, dislikes the current hunger for “eye-catching work that often ignores ecological concerns. Design is now driven by image and a desire for the new as opposed to [the] better”. For Marriott, good design needs to withstand time and passing fashions; that something is robust is the most important facet of an object.

An excellent article by Harriet Baker – that highlights a shift in current design and craft.


To encourage creativity, Mr Gove, you must first understand what it is | Ken Robinson

 

An excellent articl by Ken Robinson … Again

To encourage creativity, Mr Gove, you must first understand what it is | Ken Robinson.


Lies, damned lies and Crafts statistics – Nesta

Lies, damned lies and Crafts statistics – Nesta.

this is very interesting,

 


Visual Directions: Reflective Writing text version

 

Visual Directions: Reflective Writing text version.

 

A very useful resource on reflective writing …


PILOTS: Navigating Next Models of Design Education on Vimeo

PILOTS: Navigating Next Models of Design Education on Vimeo on Vimeo

via PILOTS: Navigating Next Models of Design Education on Vimeo.

 

 


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