Today is a slight trip into the academic world of architecture with John Hejduk. For those of you who don't know him, he was an extremely influential American architect. And as I know of him from being an alumni, the long standing dean of The Cooper Union School of Architecture. And that is a brutally short version of his biography.
Through colliding architecture with poetry, he extended it. Extended the understanding of it in an ontological sense. And in my mind extended the possibilities for it. This was often, and I'm being very general here, accomplished through themes of the mythical, the pathos of history, narration, and anthropomorphism. As in the case of this project where there are 67 architectural structures or victims proposed for Berlin. Or rather perhaps, proposed to inhabit Berlin. Though the project is not built, it is complete in the sense that it is also a book, a text, and a record. It provides allowance for architecture to be something other than casting a shadow.
Now, there are a million places to go with the above paragraph and this project. Too many for this blog post. So I'm going to excuse myself with a direct quote which is far better than I could write.
'I believe in books and the written word, therefore I fabricate works with the hope that they will be recorded in books. I am pragmatic and believe in keeping records. I believe to record is to bear witness. The book I wrote, Victims is to bear witness and to remember. I believe in the density of the sparse. I believe in place and the spirit of place.'
The below drawings were performed in a course by architectural theorist K Michael Hays at The Harvard University Graduate School Of Design by me, about five years ago. They represent to my knowledge some of the first 3 dimensional investigations into the project as a whole.
tmds1.comArchitecture And The Poetic, John Hejduk, Victims. Detailtmds1.comArchitecture And The Poetic, John Hejduk, Victims. Site Elevation