Sunday, November 18th, 2007

Quote, Unquote

I noticed this 1964 quotation amongst the many articles written to mark the death of Norman Mailer.

Modern architecture . . . tends to excite the Faustian and empty appetites of the architect’s ego rather than reveal an artist’s vision of our collective desire for shelter which is pleasurable, substantial, intricate, intimate, delicate, detailed, foibled, rich in gargoyle, guignol, false closet, secret stair, witch’s hearth, attic, grandeur, kitsch, a world of buildings as diverse as the need within the eye for stimulus and variation. For beware: the ultimate promise of modern architecture is collective sightlessness for the species. Blindness is the fruit of your design.

Topics: Architecture and Design, Urban Culture

3 Responses to “Quote, Unquote”

  1. CorrND says:

    arenn — just wanted to say that I have a new respect for your ability to keep up the almost-daily postings for close to a year, especially ones as detailed and expansive as yours tend to be. I’m still pushing, but it’s getting tougher and tougher to keep it up every day, not only the actual writing, but the content ideas.

    Kudos to you.

  2. The Urbanophile says:

    Thanks for the kind words. It’s time consuming, obviously – and that’s the key barrier to posting. I’ve actually got quite a backlog of ideas, but many of them take a while to work up.

    I’m definitely going to tweak the blog format as I come up to the one year anniversary. I’m not sure exactly what I’m going to do yet, but I will likely reduce the posting frequency.

  3. Donna says:

    “modern architecture…tends to…”

    Well, sure, BAD modern architecture does those things! Good Modern architecture gives you appreciation for quiet. And don’t we need a bit more quiet in our world?

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Aaron M. Renn is an opinion-leading urban analyst, consultant, speaker, and writer on a mission to help America’s cities thrive and find sustainable success in the 21st century.

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