experiencing architecture (1959) – steen eiler rasmussen

thanks for lending me the book, Will Schrimshaw.

  • Architecture is not created as a single, individualized sketch – the sketch is the starting point for something very specific, tangible
  • S. Maria Marriagione steps – kids playing soccer in that space experience the space more than just visually – slopes and relationships of the geometries. Bouncing a ball in the city, you feel the city/play the architecture – new sensations of built environments.
  • form and material ‘softness’ and ‘hardness’ – a soft object can have a hard form, and vice versa. a wedgewood teacup is hard in material, but soft in form. when we see objects, we also feel them in our minds
  • “In Denmark today sidewalks are often paved with several rows of concrete slabs separated by rows of granite cobllestones. It is undoubtedly practical, when necessary to lift the slab of concrete, to be able to rest the crwobar against the hard granite, which is less likely to crumble… Granite and concrete do not mix well; you can almost feel how unpleasant it is right through the soles of your shoes – the two materials are of such different grades of smoothness…”
  • The task of the architect: To bring order and relation into human surroundings
  • Attention / Observation as active: Re-creating a scene via rough sketch of attention/comprehension, then refining of the scene (the case of catching a pretty girl out of the corner of your eye)
  • The golden section (Danish Matchbox). If we call the two parts of a rectangle a and b, then the ratio of a to b is equal to the ratio of b to a+b.
  • Architecture has been called frozen music – rythmic and dimensional proportional relationships
  • Le Corbusier – Le Modulor – Marseille block exactly 4 men high.
  • Alver Aalto – rhythm in architecture, undulation (Finland building, MIT Baker House)
  • Textural effects – painting houses bright colors the result of leftover paint from boats that needed to be painted to prevent rot. wood of a 1700th century chair, and the Bauhaus inspiration of material
  • Psycho-geo-architecture: “The purely physical conditions of the land in Holland were so special that they led to a novel building method. In many towns the houses built on reclaimed land. While in other countries land was simply something that was there, in Holland the people often had to create it themselves. Every square foot was the result of hard and costly labor and therefore it was necessary to use it with the strictest economy. Before building could begin many piles had to be driven into the ground for each wall. The result of all this was limited land and densely built houses rising high into the air rather than spreading out on the ground. In some towns the costliness of land is literally illustrated by the fact that the tall houses expand towards the top so that the upper stories project far out over the streets. Thus the typical old Dutch house was a deep, tall, narrow gabled building. The lower floors were used for dwelling purposes, the upper for storage of goods, thus making it possible to concentrate a great deal within a small area. To procure enough light for the dwelling the lower part of the gabled front was pierced by many large window openings. The deep side walls were often shared with the neighboring houses so that there could be no openings in them. All light had to come from the windows in front and rear. Structurally this was ideal because the side walls supported the floor beams and roof while the gable ends had nothing to support but themselves. The front consisted of a rather thin brick wall above and of wood and glass below.

4627235828_5bed8cc707_b.jpgdanish matchbox golden section.jpgLeCorbusierModulor_Marseille.jpgcorbusier_kitchen.jpg

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