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Old September 7th, 2013, 05:29 PM   #3841
El_Greco
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bolg View Post
Why not?
Are you serious? Sprawl is the worst thing to happen to urbanity.
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Old September 7th, 2013, 06:16 PM   #3842
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Originally Posted by El_Greco View Post
Are you serious? Sprawl is the worst thing to happen to urbanity.
dito!

But still, there are areas that should be brought back to their former glory(usually the real old town), while others, like 19th ctry crap that's almost the same in every city can, if already destroyed by war or other kinds of disaster, be replaced with contemporary architecture. I am also a fan of modern architecture that has self esteem, even in historic surroundings, but no simple boxes please.
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Old September 7th, 2013, 06:37 PM   #3843
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I still ask an old question amidst the debate on the value of modernist replacements of historic/heritage architecture. How often does anyone see keepsake replicas (desktop pieces, bookends, souvenirs, artwork, etc) of modernist glass and steel structures? Almost never. What we do see are miniatures of classic churches, monuments, palaces, government buildings, etc. No one builds a city/village under their Christmas tree of cement block houses; rather classic designs of former times.

An excellent example of this is the Innside Hotel on Rampische Str. Very modern building in the midst of the rebuild area. Acceptable, but modern. YET....all the interior artwork on the walls are historic photos of old Dresden and the buildings that preservationists and anti-modernists wish to rebuild and/or restore. Here is a modern infusion to the classic area essentially confessing the past architecture was a superior visual appeal.
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Old September 7th, 2013, 06:50 PM   #3844
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Originally Posted by El_Greco View Post
Are you serious? Sprawl is the worst thing to happen to urbanity.
Well, if you by sprawl mean keeping old 4-7 story residentials and letting the city grow organically with higher and newer structures then I'm all for it. As long as the block-structure of the city is kept intact.

No one likes suburbia and towers-in-a-park though
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Old September 8th, 2013, 04:12 PM   #3845
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Originally Posted by bolg View Post
Why not?
Doesn't it have a very large footprint ?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urban_sprawl
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Old September 9th, 2013, 09:26 PM   #3846
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I think blog is saying that urban sprawl, even if unattractive and utilitarian for commercial and residential needs, is far more acceptable than changing the historic city centers and near-centers to achieve the updated, modern results contemporary architects are trying to achieve.
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Old September 9th, 2013, 09:57 PM   #3847
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I think blog is saying that urban sprawl, even if unattractive and utilitarian for commercial and residential needs, is far more acceptable than changing the historic city centers and near-centers to achieve the updated, modern results contemporary architects are trying to achieve.
Basically, even though you managed to phrase it better than me.

And also I don't think that the historic districts are that bad when it comes to density. Vasastan which is a Neustadt-district of Stockholm with mostly post-industrial, pre-ww2 structures has a population density of about 20 000 ppl/km^2 while still being a cozy place to live with small cafés, shops and calm back streets.
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Old September 9th, 2013, 11:50 PM   #3848
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Quote:
Originally Posted by El_Greco View Post
Rogers is a big admirer of old architecture and often talks about it, so I don't think contemporary architects are philistines dreaming of destroying the heritage. Besides wasn't all architecture 'loud'? What about St Peter's in Rome? Haussmann's Paris? Houses of Parliament in London? In many cases they destroyed beautiful old structures.
I'd have to disagree about that. A lot of modern architects have an anti-past approach to architecture, especially starchitects (who's fame is about as worthy as the fame of Miley Cyrus.)





Also, it is a tempting but simple approach to assume "loud" architecture in the past is the same as it is today. It isn't. "Loudness" back then was about building the grandest structure you could. The goal wasn't to shock people or create an environment of dissonance. It was about creating awe, to stimulate our natural need for beauty and to leave the viewer without words (for the right reasons).

These beautiful buildings that were destroyed were replaced by equally or even more beautiful structures. Then, after WWII the replacement of older buildings was always associated with a loss of beauty. Why do you think there are such fierce historic preservation efforts now? Do you honestly believe that people find entire segments of cities worth preservation simply because they are old? No. People are desperately trying to preserve not necessarily history, but beauty.

If the Chicago fire occurred in the 1970's rather than 1871, do you believe Chicago would be as beautiful as it is now?

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Each case should be judged on its own merits. If its just another bland box then yes it is ugly and probably won't add anything interesting to the built environment, but if a replacement is an exciting design (ie Guggenheim Bilbao or Central Library in Seattle etc), then why shouldn't it be built?

Neither of those structures are exciting. They are architectural jokes, ego boosters, whatever you want to call them. To those that are slaves to fads and peer pressure they are "cutting edge" and "brave", yet they are already hideous to the true individual who is not fooled by the emperor's new clothes.

Exciting is an in the moment feeling, a passing and quickly changing idea. These buildings will be around for centuries and should be designed not on "what's hip" or "bold", but on making sure it is beautiful for the years to come.



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Architecture does not really matter that much, the most important thing is the public realm. A street lined with old buildings but completely filled with signs and other clutter is just as ugly and damaging as a concrete monstrosity.
Then why is it that people gather in the ruins of old Gothic churches, Roman forums, and manors? Yet, they are absent from decaying 1960's and 1970's messes (save for ghost hunting).

You have to destroy a street of traditional buildings to equalize it with the appeal of a modernist street on its best day. But, if you give a street of traditional buildings and a street of modernist buildings equal treatment, the former will always be more beautiful than the latter.
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All architecture is 'faddish', be it Baroque or Art-Nouveau and at the end of the day it all boils down to what you would rather see built - boring or exciting architecture.
Boring or exciting? That's an oversimplification. Baroque and Art-Nouveau were considered stylish, but their designs were not based on being as bizarre or "unique" as possible. Even with their deviation from traditional styles they borrowed heavily from the styles before them and used the best of former styles to create a new one. Modernist architecture seeks to be a complete divorce from the past and would rather re-invent the wheel than truly progress architecturally. (much like a new religion)

No, I don't want faddish and juvenile "bold", I want GOOD architecture. I want architecture that is based not on the childish ego of man and the desire of an architect to shock, but a design based on beauty, order, and timelessness. Architecture based on SKILL.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 12:29 AM   #3849
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No, I don't want faddish and juvenile "bold", I want GOOD architecture.
Give me examples of what you consider 'good' architecture, because I get the idea that for you 'good' architecture is old architecture or one that pretends to be such. The Prague and Dresden examples you posted is exactly the kind of stuff we should be building. The Classical styles are not going to come back, the World has moved on. What we need is architecture that is exciting and brave and one that does not feel the need to apologise for being modern - a dull box - which is what you propose and which, ironically, you guys rave against.

People visit Roman ruins because they are famous. People also visit modernist buildings. But that is irrelevant as you completely missed the point of my post - that it is the public realm that is important and not architecture. There's plenty of well preserved streets which look ugly not because of some concrete tower block looming behind but because the street is full of clutter and traffic. There's also plenty of modern streets which look attractive despite not having a single old building (ie Shenzhen a city of 30 years). So yes architecture is completely irrelevant it is public realm that matters.

Your claim that pre-modern structures never shocked is simply not true. Ever wondered why Wren kept St Paul's dome hidden until the last moment? Or how much ridicule Nash's All Souls Church received? Art-Nouveau was a fad, ridiculed by most, loved by some and then forgotten.

At the end of the day the choice is very simple. We either get Zaha and Gehry or we get a box. We either demolish the old or we upgrade it with some new additions. Developers are not going to build what you want.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 03:41 AM   #3850
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Quote:
Originally Posted by El_Greco View Post
Give me examples of what you consider 'good' architecture, because I get the idea that for you 'good' architecture is old architecture or one that pretends to be such. The Prague and Dresden examples you posted is exactly the kind of stuff we should be building. The Classical styles are not going to come back, the World has moved on. What we need is architecture that is exciting and brave and one that does not feel the need to apologise for being modern - a dull box - which is what you propose and which, ironically, you guys rave against.
No, we should not be building such structures. Such structures are the tastes of a small part of society, the tastes of a group who have to "educate" humans away from their natural aesthetics so they find the ugly beautiful. It is a perversion of our senses, a bastardization of true architecture.

Classical architecture is usually vastly superior to modern architecture. But not even just Western architecture. Traditional Muslim, Chinese, Indian, Egyptian, etc., etc., is also quite beautiful. Why? They are based on human nature, they mimic the beautiful, organic, and intoxicating flow and beauty of the world around us and beyond. The ornamentation one finds in the slightest intricacies of a forest or even in the human body is celebrated in the old designs.

The world has not "moved on" as much as modernists like to claim. There is in many ways a revival of classical styles. Not only in major public buildings such as the Schermerhorn in Nashville or the Palladium on the outskirts of Indianapolis, but also in the common architecture. The houses, the stores, and even the public infrastructure is returning to the styles of before. However, they are not copying them, they are simply letting go of the fears modernist architecture placed upon us. A fear and prohibiting of ornamentation, a fear of using any positive element of the past, or a fear of appearing "uneducated" when we do not praise the hideous.

Modernists hate to admit that the reason modernist architecture was so prevalent was not the organic and natural flow of architectural evolution, but due to a direct assault on architectural tradition. Only with the emperor's new clothes can the style survive. Modern art is no different. They become quite pugnacious when you say that their legitimacy is questionable. People like Libeskind are hardly worth calling architects. Showing not only a complete disrespect for the hard work of another architect, he also depends on gaining fame through the defacement of beauty. His "addition" to the Dresden war museum is more like a parasitic insect gaining sustenance at the cost of his host.

It is so much easier to be famous for doing something badly than it is for doing something right.



Quote:


People visit Roman ruins because they are famous. People also visit modernist buildings. But that is irrelevant as you completely missed the point of my post - that it is the public realm that is important and not architecture. There's plenty of well preserved streets which look ugly not because of some concrete tower block looming behind but because the street is full of clutter and traffic. There's also plenty of modern streets which look attractive despite not having a single old building (ie Shenzhen a city of 30 years). So yes architecture is completely irrelevant it is public realm that matters.
No, I got your point. I just disagree. Though I'll agree there is far more appeal in a clean and well kept street, I do not agree that it is more important than the architecture. Shenzhen has clean roads, but I'd hardly call it a beautiful city. The buildings are dull, plain, and stripped. A clean older city with traditional buildings would be far, far, far more beautiful.


Quote:

Your claim that pre-modern structures never shocked is simply not true. Ever wondered why Wren kept St Paul's dome hidden until the last moment? Or how much ridicule Nash's All Souls Church received? Art-Nouveau was a fad, ridiculed by most, loved by some and then forgotten.
It did shock, but not in the same way. People often say that since people were surprised by a building constructed in the past that it justifies their poor designs (especially in the midst of public outcry). It is a false correlation. Today when people are shocked by a design it is generally not for good reasons.
Quote:

At the end of the day the choice is very simple. We either get Zaha and Gehry or we get a box. We either demolish the old or we upgrade it with some new additions. Developers are not going to build what you want.
It isn't that simple. It is far more complex than that.

We DO have choices and more and more people are beginning to take advantage of that.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 04:22 AM   #3851
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Yes we should be building like this and yes the World has moved on - the overwhelming majority of new buildings being built in the World today are modern. Doric columns is and will remain a minority sport.

And you still haven't told me what you consider 'good' architecture.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 09:04 AM   #3852
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Yes we should be building like this and yes the World has moved on - the overwhelming majority of new buildings being built in the World today are modern. Doric columns is and will remain a minority sport.

And you still haven't told me what you consider 'good' architecture.
I agree time of the doric columns is gone, but can we learn something from the masters ? Good proportions, rythm, order etc ?

No one can say a house by Palladio is ugly, but you can easily say it about several deconstructivist buildings...even many constructivist buidings are ugly.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 09:13 AM   #3853
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Originally Posted by keepthepast View Post


I think blog is saying that urban sprawl, even if unattractive and utilitarian for commercial and residential needs, is far more acceptable than changing the historic city centers and near-centers to achieve the updated, modern results contemporary architects are trying to achieve.
You have to start picking up architects that can make high density architecture that fits into old..engineering wizards and real estate money makers can't do it...you need multi talented architects.

Sprawl is not sustainable.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 09:19 AM   #3854
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I'd have to disagree about that. A lot of modern architects have an anti-past approach to architecture, especially starchitects (who's fame is about as worthy as the fame of Miley Cyrus.)




I think these two examples present quite different (I'd even say, opposite) approaches to the historical environment while constructing new buildings. The latter one, in Dresden is what you're mostly talking about: an aggressive ignorant invasion, almost a crime. Such things could look interesting and funny as concepts or models but horrify in reality. But the first one, the Dancing House in Prague, is absolutely different. While not copying old time architecture it manages to blend with the environment (rather mediocre by Prague standards at that particular place) almost perfectly, not roughly contradicting to it, just adding some prominent accent to the whole ensemble.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 09:26 AM   #3855
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The Prague and Dresden examples you posted is exactly the kind of stuff we should be building.
To say that Dresden example is the kind of stuff we should be building means we should keep spoiling what our predessors have built.
I agree in the case of Prague though.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 09:28 AM   #3856
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Modernists hate to admit that the reason modernist architecture was so prevalent was not the organic and natural flow of architectural evolution, but due to a direct assault on architectural tradition. Only with the emperor's new clothes can the style survive. Modern art is no different. They become quite pugnacious when you say that their legitimacy is questionable.
Probably the popularity of modernism had something to do with the fact that it was simply cheaper

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I'd have to disagree about that. A lot of modern architects have an anti-past approach to architecture, especially starchitects (who's fame is about as worthy as the fame of Miley Cyrus.)

Basically, Prague (and other cities relatively unhurt by war) is a city where experiments, such as "Dancing House" are acceptable. The problem in Dresden is that it ceased to exist and is being reclaimed to life, like Frankenstein. And to that goal "Dancing House" is not enough.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 01:40 PM   #3857
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To say that Dresden example is the kind of stuff we should be building means we should keep spoiling what our predessors have built.
I agree in the case of Prague though.
The Dresden example is just another boring Classicist building.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 02:10 PM   #3858
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Libeskind's extension of the Military Museum is imho a really great and impressive piece of architecture! Or should I say piece of art?

image hosted on flickr

MHM Dresden / Keil by 96dpi, on Flickr

image hosted on flickr

MHM Dresden by 96dpi, on Flickr

image hosted on flickr

MHM Dresden by 96dpi, on Flickr

It can be (if necessary) removed in the future, so it doesn't actually harm the historic building and it doesn't hurt any historic cityscape, as the Military Museum stands on its own in a park area.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 02:12 PM   #3859
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Agreed. Without the extension this would be just another forgettable old building.
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Old September 10th, 2013, 04:22 PM   #3860
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And now it's a disfigured old building.
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