Quick and dirty

by Manfred Wolff-Plottegg

(see „Beyond Art“ Exposition and catalogue, Budapest 1996, Graz 1997)

When generated architecture developed, the previously cultivated anthropocentric approach became repalced to external automatistic events. The computer allowed architecture to get rid of the up-to-then intention to represent world-views, and the most essential characteristics of an up-to-date and modern architecture were formulated. There do not exist any more neither The architect’s handwirting trademark as an individual signature, nor the purpose as fulfilment of an aim, nor predefined functions as metaphor for teleologies. The longlasting predominance of form, body and material has been overcome; architecture is no longer a signifier; unplugged from retrospection, relieved from habits, personal desire and projections, does not render service to the powerful any more. Being no longer derivative, architecture will be autocatalytic.

Within the environment of the CPU, the linear, singular and visual logic of orthogonal projection and perspective are obsolete. Binary lines are cracks void of any content, the namelessness of lines leaving them without any functional purpose, whereas the CPU supplies the vocabulary of forms. The binary house is complete in the CPU, without location in an environment witout point of view, a site without standpoint. For the eye, the presentation is immediate, all images opened are equivalent, the CPU condensing duration of time into simultaneity. The binary house itself has no dimension, it is simultaneous & timeless, non-hereditary, abstract, dematerialized architecture. The plan has died, perspective has died. There’s no more point of view. The flow in the Net defines architecture as instantaneous and placeless.

By browsing in the Net architecture is further accelerated: as the Net is characterised by rapid access to an enormous amount of data stored side by side which are non hierarchic, quasi equivalent, architecture manifests itself by browsing or surfing. in conventional thought each step of designing was a stage of development, an improvement of the former, browsing, because of the huge amount of equivalently coexisting data, now relativizes the illusion of “quality”, the idea of truth and thus also the fiction of improvement. The modern architect is no longer an idealistic do-gooder.

The aspect of rightness is abolished and the architect’s know-all dogmatism has no ground any more. Subsequently, neither compatability of material nor of craftsmanship nor of constuction exist any longer. As a criterion compatability is now replaced by speed, and as a result of speed precision is replaced by superficiality. For this ever faster speed and superficiality, the theory of fuzzy logic has been developed. This means that there should be more generosity. A good architect is a superficial surfer.

Static models of architecture production have run out. Instead, intelligent, interactive surfing in system processes has become important. The formulations of architecture algorithms in the Net will not be aiming at a better world or any other content or ideology. This architecture without teleology will be autocatalytic, algorithmic and emancipated: quick & dirty.

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