The history of discourses has been developed for centuries, and architecture have entered a phase of re-evaluation. Because of the prevalent technology and media of creation in the virtual world, contemporary architecture is dematerialized to be images and abstract ideas. The definition of architecture has become even more subjective, obscure, ambiguous and limited. We took advantages from photography and the technology of visualization. But the excessive trust on the visual sensation has somehow blinded our eyes and becomes the obstacle for understanding space and architecture. Photographers and designers selectively frame an object to depict a most exaggerated angle or to capture a most exciting moment. Audiences lost their autonomy in discovering the truth, because there is no other materials available except the illusions. The resulted biased understanding to architecture contradicts to Juhani Pallasmaa’s theory. He reaffirmed Merleau-Ponty’s philosophy, the human body is the centre of experiential world, in his book: The Eyes of The Skin. He argues that multi-sensory experience allows the human body perceiving the qualities of space, matter and scale in a more profound manner. However, the multi-sensory experience does not apply to those intangible architecture. The obsession of rendering has enervated the importance of materiality. Materiality means mapping or tiling ‘texture’ over the flat surface in the simulation program, disregarding physical properties, thickness, stiffness, elasticity, and density, of each specific material. We recklessly over simplify materiality. In renderings, stainless steel means highly reflective and shiny; wood means brown and static; brick means pixelated facade. Material has been degraded to be a piece of veneer or wallpaper, fragile and dispensable. This encourages substituting one material with another material. It is not rare to use hollow metal with shiny coating to
Bibliography: 1. Antoine Picon, “Architecture and the Virtual: Towards a New Materiality,” PRAXIS 6: New Technologies://New Architectures (2004), 114-21. 2. Colin Rowe and Robert Slutzky, “Transparency: Literal and Phenomenal, Part I,” Perspecta 8 (1964), republished in Todd Gannon, ed. The Light Construction Reader (New York: Monacelli Press, 2002), 91-101. 3. Walter Benjamin, The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction, and other writing on media (Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University, 2008), 19-55. 4. Elizabeth Diller, “Architecture is a technology that has not yet discovered its agency,” log 28 (Summer 2013). 5. Ole W. Fischer, Atmosphere - Architectural Spaces Between Critical Reading and Immersive Presence, (www.field-journal.org), vol.1 (1) 6. Beatriz Colomina, Architecture Reproduction, (Princeton Architectural Press, 2011), 7-99. 7. Juhani Pallasmaa, The Eyes of The Skin: Architecture and the Senses, (Wiley Academy: John Wiley and Sons Ltd, 2005).