Friday, April 13, 2007


TU Delft organised a series of lectures: Architecture Positions. Two architects with differing opinions were pit against one another, with a critic as a moderator.

And today was one of the most exciting: Bernard Tschumi one of the forefathers of modern architecture, was in town! Topic of debate: Monumentality and public representation. Hundreds of students streamed into zaal A when the doors opened at 5.45pm. Excitement was in the air as students chatted excitedly. Tschumi was coming!
So what did Tschumi say about monumentality? It is a non-issue as far as he is concerned, because "Architecture is not a knowledge of form, it is a form of knowledge." His emphasis was on the logic and ideas of architecture, and how they could be executed as concepts. Tschumi was pit against Hans Koolhof, a german architect passionate for the facades of old, because in these facades you could see the representation of a face. Tschumi was polite and detached, while Hans Koolhof got slightly peeved with a student's question. Deyan Sujdik was the moderator, but I felt he did a pretty poor job moderating, although he gave a passionate speech in the beginning about architecture and power. His statement: Architects may be better off with megalomaniac dictators than they are now with with liberal democrats.
Although I disagree with Tschumi's stance (he is ignoring the outcome of monumentality by focusing on the process of design; seems to me like a case of closing one eye...just because) I am won over by Tschumi's professionalism and politeness. ps: check out Tschumi's work for the Dominican Republic. Oval overkill!