Saturday, November 29, 2008

Το τσίρκο συνεχίζει

Το blog συνεχίζεται εδώ..

The Blog continues here..

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

2 sketches

Urban Design 9th semester

Thursday, October 18, 2007

The Constant Experiment

...the fluid, almost abstract function of the circus is being metonymized onto a constant transforming, refreshing and doubtful redefinition of the Circus Idea, through experimentation per place and time. It is an endless architectural experiment but maintaining the same client and generic Idea. The phenomenon of the Circus prevails over the fluidity of the program; Elephants added, guest magicians invited, non-stop moving from place to place, new urban contexts...New symbols, new structural methods, new materials, new -isms and colors, new posters and circus trademarks... (Concrete Circus Context)

Monday, October 15, 2007

An urban détournement

A bricolage of Tokyo, used for the context of the city featuring in an Etgar Keret 's short story called "a hole on a wall" (Μια τρύπα στον τοίχο, Καστανιώτη publications). Here 's a preview of an animation we did as a team of five collegues(Aristoteles Maragkos, Theodosis Hsaias, Chrysoula Korovesi, Fereniki Fotopoulou, Michael Vlasopoulos). The linearity of the City follows the narrative of the story.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Νοηματικό Συνονθύλευμα 01

...Και με μια απλή φωτογραφία ο Charles Jencks επισημαίνει πως ο μοντερνισμός μου πέθανε(Η γλώσσα της μεταμοντέρνας αρχιτεκτονικής 1977). Ο φακός στις 15 Ιουλίου 1972 συλλαμβάνει μια ακραία έκφραση των δυνητικών αναγκών του μετα-μοντέρνου(τουλάχιστον χρονικά) ανθρώπου. Η δυνητική κατακραυγή δηλώνεται στον χώρο που δεν την ικανοποίησε με την μορφή συστάδων δυναμίτη. Για άλλη μια φορά η καταστροφή γίνεται μέρος της αρχιτεκτονικής ακόμα και αν την ακυρώνει ή την γκρεμίζει. Μπουμ, Μπουμ, Μπουμ, ώρα 3.32΄ το απόγευμα. Η αρχιτεκτονική αποτυγχάνει να εκφράσει τον χρήστη, ή χάθηκε, ξεχάστηκε το manual αυτής της "μηχανής (συλλογικής) κατοίκησης". Η στοιχειωτική αυτη "εικαστική καραμέλα" αποτελεί ένα συνονθύλευμα νοημάτων, και παράλληλα με εκπληκτικό τρόπο αφορά τον αρχιτέκτονα με τρόπο προσωπικό, είναι ένα Barthes-έζικο punctum στον χωροχρόνο..Είναι ένα freeze-frame από μια απο τις πολλές οσμώσεις μεταξύ ενός "αργού και βαρούς" δομημένου περιβάλλοντος και των ανέκφραστων βιωμένων ανθρώπινων αναγκών. Ίσως πρέπει να περιμένουμε λίγα χρόνια για να παλιώσει τόσο πολύ η μπετονένια πόλη, ώστε να νοιώσουμε πάλι την ηδονή που προσφέρει το να γίνεται μια έκρηξη μέρος μιας αρχιτεκτονικής ιστορίας..

Friday, September 28, 2007

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Un_Nesessary Automations

A JukeBot..

Stop motion animation puppet featuring in a short movie we did, me and my friend/collaborator Aristotelis Maragkos.

Friday, June 15, 2007

The Concrete Circus

The following project deals with a dichotomy of architecture in "object" and "event". The concept of the Circus as a procedure of rupture between those two.
The Circus is a mobile "ghost" structure. Incomplete, indeterminant and packable. The teleology of the building and destruction of a concrete circus is a metonymization of its legitimate function: the ephemeral erection and the packing within a bunch of trucks. It is a metonymy of the uncertainty of its origin and destination. In other words the tent & truck architecture is being substituted by cement & dynamite, as Sant 'Elia quoted "Burn it every fifty years..". It's calamity becomes part of the show; the best and most trained acrobats and magicians participate in that unique and unrepeatable extravaganza.

Housing of the Event&Packing__________Solidification around the Event&Explosion

The "idea" of the Circus, that legitimize a tensed fabric becomes an ad-hoc built void. The moment that the first concrete circus is been built, through that architectural rupture the figure and the typology of the circus gain substance. The building becomes part of the show. Becomes the paraphernalia of illusion, jokes and the grotesque. It doesn't cover, but houses the circus. It's once fragmented and scattered spaces saturate a dense, centripetal spiral infrastructure. Concrete backstage spaces and open air-roof for rehearsing included.

A series of metonymies begins with the destruction and the building of New concrete Circuses. And while the ephemeral montage-able materials of the circus constitute a generic structural kit that seaks urban voids to unfold and scatter, a permanent monolithic structure will perform the opposite: It shall be a concretization of the transition from the "urban outside" to the working place of a clown, thus the fluid, almost abstract function of the circus is being metonymized onto a constant transforming, refreshing and doubtful redefinition of the Circus Idea, through experimentation per place and time. It is an endless architectural experiment but maintaining the same client and generic Idea. The phenomenon of the Circus prevails over the fluidity of the program; Elephants added, guest magicians invited, non-stop moving from place to place, new urban contexts...New symbols, new structural methods, new materials, new -isms and colors, new posters and circus trademarks...

The Story of the Urban Arc

Once People constructed a dense city...

They packed and folded their culture into a giant Urban Arc and fled..Fled away from danger and a legitimate past bounding them with the Place.
The construction took a couple of years to complete...During that time they embedded their consensus in a diverse, heterogeneous and perverse built environment, praising proximity, difference, multiplicity, congestion, complexion, contradiction as fundamental social values. Since there had been arguements regarding the generic form of their "city" politicians and planners agreed in a theoritical envelope shaped as a bean, through which each individual citizen would inhabit space by the act of deteriorization of the generic bulk.
And there it was..A sperm of urbanity, a floating concrete genius loci sailing over seas and time, looking for the New Place. The shelled-city begun its vigorous voyage. This urban mitochondrion survived through wars, revolutions and social-economical changes. Signs of human hatred, use, inhabitation and dereliction covered the city walls.
When they finally reached the New Place, a cultural Big-Bang ocurred, a Pandora' s box opened and unleashed societies into the vast empty nothingness of the uncharted lanscape. The once unified, dense civilization scattered into fragments of urbanity, ruptured and unfolded. An almost forgotten word has been re-added to their vocabularies and enery-day language: Suburban. New generations evolved and blossomed around the abandoned, wrecked Arc. Artists praised the Era of the Big-Bang with their work. Everybody was happy, peaceful and equilibrial. Everybody except the old men and women who had lived and survived the trip of the Arc. Nostalgia and misery enfilled their hearts. Their inertia infront of the New and Bright future made them return to the "old city". And after several walks through the once filled with life concrete carcass, they died there peacefully slowly and steadily turning the Arc into an informal cemetery...

2+1 Definitions of the City

City 17 is a fictional city from the first-person shooter computer game Half-Life 2 (2004)

"Virtually all theories about the city are true, especially contradictory ones. The city works both as a medieval village with the equivalent of 13st century inhabitants pottering about, and a global network of 24 hour traders." Charles Jencks(1996 :26)

City is:

"...a collection of primary groups and purposive associations...An aesthetic symbol of collective unity that fosters "Personal Dis-integration and Re-integration" through wider participation in a concrete and visible collective whole." Lewis Mumford(1937)

"...the site of barbarous indifference, hard egotism on the one hand and nameless misery onthe other" Engels(1845)

(Maybe the city today occurs somewhere between these two views. The selected bibliography that follows focuses in the analysis of the city and its architecture through paradigms, specific “frames” of the ever-changing form of the city. The history of a city contains a diverse context where accidents, ideas, traditions, needs, ideologies and participation form a complex environment of the inhabitation of space. It is a built calendar of a diverse civilization. Thus, it is characterized by an element of potentiality. The paradigms constitute the paraphernalia of the urban analysis.)


"...But refusing to be obsessed by form, I realize that I have become obsessed with strategy..." Jean Nouvel, Any-thing

Strategy: a word coming from the cosmos of military, just like the word avant-garde. Reminds me the manifestation of architecture through Lebbeus Woods quotation: "Architecture is war" (The end of architecture?> Vienna Conference 1992). "Strategy" indeed has a lasting effect upon the architectural procedure. Through the "lenses" of this word's signification architectural culture over time&space is freed from styles, ideological, aesthetical, historical preoccupations. The successfulness of a piece of architecture has always been related with "strategies" and "solutions", since ancient times and to contemporary ones. Agreed on that, should then begin to realize that actually there are on -isms and -asms dividing history, but solely different answers of the same question, having the context changed and disguised through manifestos and movements...


"The space inside that building, is the meaning of that building". Frank Loyd Wright

Περιεχόμενο> The greek word for what it is inside or included in something. Interestingly enough it also stand for or . That reminds me of another interesting word: Im-portance. Looks like the usage of language implies the same thing as architecture: Being inside of something has to do with deepening in its meaning and thing-ness (M. Heidegger term: what turns one thing into A thing, the condition of its being a thing. "Was das Ding zum Ding be-dingt"). That also has something to do with "interiority" in art and architecture. Between wars it was Theo Van Doesburg and De Stjl' s movement's: "Grand vision of placing man within the painting instead of in front of it".

Utsu signifies the void inside something: a cave in a rocky mountain; the hollow of an old tree; the space of the dugout, or canoe; or the cavity of a pit dwelling. All of these voids where thought to house the sacred spirit. As people' s ideas of the void became more and more ritualized, even a solid gemstone was believed to internalize a void; and a sack of cloth. without holes for hands and feet, was thought to host the sacred God. The more removed an object was from exteriority, the more sacred was considered its internal void. When a certain thing was sanctified, it was then thought to contain an internal void- an imagined void...
"My own recently completed architecture can be defined as utsu (void) + fune (boat) as in the ancient, sacred dugout, which contains a hollow space inside...Utsu is fed by the dynamism of paradox in seeing everyday things as containing a vacuum, or conversely, in visualizing a vacuum as things, as everyday objects."
Arata Isozaki "Any-thing", 2001

These views shared by the japanese New Wave architects(1970) lead to the experimental internal micro-cosmos, as a defensive answer to the aggressive and chaotic urban condition of the post-war Japan.
Curiously and sadly enough the essential task of the architect of constructing internal spaces has been diminished to a Neo-Productivistic, Life-stylistic invention of the term interior design& decoration...

Friday, June 8, 2007

What is a carcass?

A carcass can be the macabre remains of a dead body, as well as a building in the state of construction or destruction. Eitherway it somehow relates with endings and beginnings. The view of a carcass disturbs equally all of us, as it exposes the structural order, the meaning, the "guts" of an organism, without ideological ornaments and insulation materials. Maybe what disturbs us is that we find ourselves infront of a "common skeleton", universal, "objectified", opened, determinant. If we perceive architectural creation as an "organic whole", we should then realize that this "organism" of ours can never succeds in not being dead! Architecture ought to be dead, still, persistent in order to house life. The death of an idea comes with the materialization of it...

Still, the best way to praise a piece of architecture and understand it as a human creation is to visualize it as a carcass, to proceed in an anatomy of space, time, object, that in contrast with the medical term leads to personalised evaluation and aesthetics. Gordon Matta-Clark presents a section of an old house. He is in search of a human-scaled doll-house. Dr.Mantle quotes that there is aesthetics of the insides of a body. To sum up architecture is understood through memories of inhabitation and use as a series of carcasses. We make our own maps, sections, diagrams to orientate and function in buildings and cities.

How do we embed this valuable information in an architectural organism? How do we reveal the idea, the uncommon skeleton to public view? In order to apply a critique on architecture, do we need to exclude the ideological DNA, or focus on the anatomy of it? Let us be microbiologists or anatomists of the contemporary building environment?

Wednesday, June 6, 2007


" I've often thought that there should be beauty contests for the *insides* of bodies. "

These are the words of the character Dr.Elliot Mantle (Mantle vs. Dis-Mantle?) performed by Jeremy Irons in the David Cronenberg's movie "Dead Ringers". (Bari Wood & Jack Geasland book: The twins)

"The meaning of architecture is not in the floor, walls or ceiling, but in the world contained inside." Okakura Tenshin "The book of Tea"

Belonging somewhere has something to do with being "inside" in contrast with being "outside". Architecture evolves when it succeeds to include a meaning, a story, an idea, a system through the production of space...Architecture succeeds in constructing the "inside".
Gordon Matta-Clark is an artist born in N.Y. and studied in Cornell University. It was in Paris that he became aware of the French deconstructionist philosophers and Guy Debord and the Situationists. These cultural and political radicals developed the concept of détournement, or "the reuse of pre-existing artistic elements in a new ensemble." By what means is this guy making architecture? He objectifies the perception of the architect. An architect uses to "cut", "dis-mantle", "de-stroy" space in order to understand it. The greek word ana-lysis (ανα-λύω) stands for "the act of dismantling a unified whole in order to derive the structural information out of it". The anatomy of an architectural object leads to a "diagram of the insides". The building cuts of his constitute "architectural carcasses"...Mr. Mantle wants to be a new Frankenstein. Gordon M. Clark sees buildings as doll-houses...According to a Post-structuralistic approach: "Nothing is new; It is always a recombination of the old"