9.12.11

*** Sidewalk Weekend! ***

Sidewalk Rating: Icy

Dear Concept Of Phenomenology In Architecture As Developed By The Norwegian Theorist Christian Norberg-Schulz,
My boyfriend is an avid bicyclist who rides his bike to and from work every day. Despite my direct pleadings for him to purchase a bike helmet, he has so far refused to wear one. He claims they look silly and are unnecessary if you're a good cyclist. How can I convince him to practice proper bike safety without him feeling like I'm "cramping his style"?
—Concerned in Cleveland

Dear Concerned,
Architecture (insofar as architecture is an art) should contain within it the potential for the revelation of that which is unknown. Changes in our physical environment, particularly in the structure of our cities following the Second World War, have resulted in a loss of a sense of place, as well as a subsequent "empty space" within our perceived experience of our world. This can only be remedied by a renewed sense of human settlements as urbanfoci, and of the role of architect as designer of meaningful sub-places where man can simultaneously experience individuality and belonging. A building is not merely a building but a shared spatial experience—a locality—that embodies and shapes the values of its environment and of culture as a whole. This is not merely a matter of identity in the sense of the development of local characteristics, but also of equality in fostering opportunity to play a part in a greater context. The lived experience of building materials and their sensory properties is, of course, paramount to achieving this understanding.

[Fm The Onion.]

[A tree leans out over the sidewalks of Wall Street in Lowertown, St Paul.]



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1 comment:

Alex said...

They forgot to put Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer in the 80's column.