Discussion Session 2
09.19.2012 + 09.26.2012
(NAAB criteria A.9, A.10, C.2, C.9)
Unwin, Simon. “Architecture as Identification of Place.” Analyzing Architecture. New York:
Routledge, 2003. Print.
Kahn, Louis I., and Robert Twombly. "The Room, the Street, and the Human Agreement."
LouisKahn Essential Texts. Boston: W. W. Norton & Company, 2003. Print.
1. According to Unwin, architectural discourse has always grappled with two fundamental questions: ʻwhat is architecture?ʼ and ʻwhy do we do it?ʼ (27) He argues in the essay that the identification of place rather than production of buildings lies at the generative core of architecture. (28) Do you agree with this assertion? Further, do you think these terms have similar or divergent meanings to people from different cultural backgrounds? (A.9,
2. According to Unwin, the user is as indispensable to architecture as the designer. Given this statement, what is the role of the designer in this context? Is it to propose “places that accord well with usersʼ perceptions and expectations?” Or is it to challenge the status quo? What are the responsibilities of the designer to the people they serve? (C.9, A.10)
3. Kahn compares architecture to music (14) and Unwin compares architecture to other art forms like sculpture, painting and film and then posits that architecture is the “mother” of all arts. (89) Professor Murphy also made comparisons between film and architecture. Is architecture an art form? Or is it something different? (A.9)
4. Kahn states, “A city is measured by the character of its institutions. The street is one of its first institutions. Today these institutions are on trial … New spaces will come only from a new sense of human agreements…” (15) Professor Murphy also spoke about the city and the street in relationship to digital media. She posed the Internet as an encapsulation of the city, which isolates us from ʻreal experienceʼ. Do you think the virtual world is