Resist architecture’s role in spectacle culture


The Report of My Death

Sylvia Lavin

July 2012

Excerpt from Log 25, Summer 2012. Anyone Corporation
to life, or to the life in and of buildings as it has increasingly come to be staged. Ironically, the most impassioned “life-lovers” are those who assume a traditionally mournful critical posture: professing to resist architecture’s role in spectacle culture, bemoaning the fact that architecture can offer only “intensity,” and hence simulated experience, their goal is to protect buildings from this sad end. But in order to exercise this benevolence, the analogy between the body of the building and the human body must be resurrected because this mythical identity is the only way to make a “real building” stand in as an alibi for an anachronistic attachment to “real life.” A particularly reified version of embodied experience (nostalgically rooted in 1970s phenomenology rather than the exigencies of the current historical moment) is maintained by the mythologizing of the ecological, entropic, mundane life of a building. Assassination as the ultimate tool of resistance has been replaced by many forms of revivification – from contemporary minimalism to preservation aesthetics and the rhetoric of sustainability – and the result is not spectacle architecture but rather building pressed into service as a spectacle of the real.
Read the full article here.

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