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Post Modernism In Architecture Essay

570 words - 3 pages

An architect’s goal is to design appropriately to the time. In the mid to late twentieth century post-modernist such as Venturi found the purism and oversimplification of modernism lacking. Venturi recognized that the world is not simple in nature, but full of complexity and contradictions. Post-modernists aim for an implicit richness of meaning through complexity and contradiction rather than an oversimplified blatant clarity of meaning. A building is basically comprised of a variety of paradoxes, such as outdoor and indoor, primary spaces and secondary space and so on. In Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture, Robert Venturi states that “Blatant simplification means bland architecture” and elaborates on the necessity of complexity and contradiction architecturally appropriate for modernity (Venturi, 25).
“A valid order accommodates the circumstantial contradictions of a complex reality” (Venturi, 46). According to Kahn, “it is the role of design to adjust to the circumstantial,” however, modern architecture has “operated too long under the restrictions of unbending rectangular forms” (Venturi, 56). Modernists were obsessed with order, rhythm, geometry and elements such as rectilinear forms and curtain walls. For example, in the design of the Seagram building, “Mies and Johnson completely deny circumstantial requirements of diagonal wind-bracing in favor of rectilinear expression” (56). In order to appropriately design and meet the complexity of modern circumstances, contradiction through a sort of defamiliarization is required.
According to Venturi, there were a few modernists, such as Kahn, Le Corbusier, and Alvar Aalto whom were more progressive than the rest of the modernists. These architects addressed the complexity of modernity by considering circumstantial and contextual problems in their design process. For example, Le Corbusier incorporates...

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