Architectural Design and Historical Awareness

Time:2023-03-23 Hit:

We are walking at the forefront of the times.. What is the use of looking back on the past when we must break through the mysterious door that prevents us from becoming impossible? Both time and space died yesterday. Today we live in absoluteness, and we have created an eternal universal speed.

——Manifesto of Futurism

1、 The longer a country has a long history, the more it needs to change because there are too many outdated things. The longer a country has a long history, the more difficult it is to change because the power of habit is too strong. In this way, a country that does not change will become weak due to a lack of fresh vitality, and too drastic changes can easily confront strong habitual forces, making the prospects of change uncertain or even premature. This is an extremely difficult art to grasp, it requires a large artist.

Anyway, adapting to the trend of history is an inevitable change. On this point, Bacon once said a very insightful sentence: "If we cannot change things according to time and stubbornly adhere to the old customs, this itself is the source of chaos

The most outstanding reformers are not those who have no knowledge or little knowledge of tradition, but those who have a deep understanding of tradition.

Nietzsche shouted to heaven, 'God is dead!'

The Chinese architecture industry needs a Cobusian style frenzy figure to shout at us: "In architecture, the ancient structural foundation has died. The new prospects can only be restored to the great traditional line after thoroughly revising the current methods and establishing a new logical structural foundation

2、 I don't think it's necessary to discuss the historical context of architecture, the resemblance between spirit and form, and the conflict between tradition and modernity here. These issues have been debated in Japan since the Kenzō Tange era, but we are still here chattering about what to do together. Xiao Riben has an economic mind in the end and is unwilling to waste more words in this regard. Look at what Kenzō Tange said, "I often say verbally that I respect the traditional design of various countries. In fact, I just build Japanese architecture directly in a certain country. Even if I mention the traditions of various countries, it is mainly caused by the climate and customs."

We don't have to worry about the lack of historical awareness among the Chinese people. On the contrary, the Chinese people's historical awareness has always been strong, inexplicably strong, constantly clamoring to embark on the path of new architecture with Chinese characteristics. So, the so-called Chinese characteristics are often referred to as "creating French style" or "classical column style", which is called characteristic? This is called backwardness.

You can't see a history of European architecture, magnificent and magnificent. After the Roman colonnade collapsed in the barbarian fire, what emerged from the ruins was the spire of the Gothic church. The masters of the Renaissance had just perfected the use of the order, and a gust of Baroque wind shattered all the norms of the order. Before Classicism could build several truly rigorous and elegant buildings, the interior decoration of Rococo set off the figures of noble husbands. The classical revival and romanticism that arose with the storm of the Bourgeois revolution, once the historical task was completed, the The Crystal Palace appeared in the middle of the 19th century.

What does China have in comparison? What is the history of our architecture, as a country with a strong reputation for history? For thousands of years after the publication of "Zao Fa Shi", the Chinese architectural style has been inherited almost intact by the craftsmen of all ages, at best, only adding several layers of redundant arch of wooden architecture to the original shape.

I have great respect for Mr. Liang Sicheng. Without him, Chinese modern architecture might have started several years later; Just like without Mao Zedong, the Chinese revolution would have been groping in the darkness for a longer time. But it was precisely because of Mao Zedong that China experienced the devastating Cultural Revolution in the past decade. Mr. Liang, who was supposed to bring back the most advanced design ideas and concepts from abroad, is intertwined with tradition and national essence. He casually drew a picture of China's future architecture, which made the Chinese architecture industry revere and dim, and has not yet emerged from the strange circle.

He reminds me of Lin Qinnan, who has translated a large number of foreign literary and artistic works in Classical Chinese. Many followers of new culture have learned foreign languages because of the enlightenment of Lin's novels. They have given up Classical Chinese because of learning foreign languages. The land outside Classical Chinese is so vast that they have no choice but to return. Lin Qinnan became angry and turned to denounce the New Culture Movement. The sad thing about Lin Qinnan is that he is both the window opener and the gatekeeper.

This is also the tragedy of architecture. Mr. Liang's imagination has left only a small part of our historical consciousness to plagiarize history.

When the postmodern theory of historical context was introduced to our country, plagiarists seemed to have a grandiose excuse, "What we do is to intercept historical symbols and information, and reflect historical consciousness in architecture." Unfortunately, they only learned the superficial knowledge of postmodernism, and had no time to make a fool of themselves. In his book "The Complexity and Contradiction of Architecture," there is an important passage that goes, "The use of tradition in architecture has both practical and artistic value. By using non-traditional methods to combine familiar things with unfamiliar ones, he is changing their environment. He can even achieve new effects by using old-fashioned things

What we have learned is to apply tradition in traditional ways and combine familiar things in familiar ways. Elephants are shouting loudly - look at me! Afraid that the world may not know that they have designed a cultural architecture. Do people have to see the arch of wooden architecture, the big roof and the lattice windows to realize the history?

Our historical consciousness is too superficial and rampant, and what we lack is the historical unconsciousness.

3、 From Freud's psychoanalytic perspective, consciousness refers to the sum of human spiritual activities that are parallel to matter. However, our consciousness as a whole should not stop here, because there is a hypothesis that we recognize all the ideas in our hearts or that only the ideas that are already known to us are consciousness. The so-called unconsciousness is consciousness that is not recognized by our consciousness. But it does exist in our hearts. At a certain moment, one will unconsciously behave, not even realizing it. Architectural design requires such historical unconsciousness.

We may have the understanding that when recalling a distant event, only fragments and images appear in our minds, and history is also reproduced in modern times through memory and fragments. These fragments and images are more about representing a scene, a historical scene.

When you realize history and then go into building historical sites, your mind is already constrained by bars, and your heart is filled with symbols and codes. The scene is alienated into symbols, and the spirit is abstracted into codes.

Rossi mentioned in his "Urban Architecture" that cities exist based on their image, which is a realistic form closely related to human specific life in time and place. It contains history and is a formal expression of human social and cultural concepts. At the same time, places are not only determined by space, but also by the continuous events that have occurred in these spaces throughout history. The so-called "urban spirit" exists in its history. Once this spirit is given form, it becomes a symbol of the place, and memory becomes its structural guide. So, memory replaced history. Therefore, urban architecture is understood in the psychological structure of Collective memory. And this structure is the stage where events occur and provides a framework for future changes.

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