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Support the Anyone project Our Chances. How Bernard Tschumi’s retrospective quietly reaffirmed the case for architectural conjecture during the summer of fundamentalism Jeffrey Kipnis The Silent Witness Gustavo Alonso Serafin A Conversation with Odile Decq Cynthia Davidson The Polis of Gestures Paola Nicolin The Big Convention Dora Epstein Jones Whiplash Sanford Kwinter Sebald’s Burning Train Stations and Monstrous Courthouses Kurt W. Forster Log 31 Launch & Discussion at SCI-Arc July 17, 7 PM The Pas de Chat: A Modern Tale of Discipline and Reward Dora Epstein Jones The Shanghai Expo and the Rise of Pop-Arch Mark Jarzombek What Kinds of Copies? Urtzi Grau & Cristina Goberna Log 31 Launch & Discussion at Columbia GSAPP July 10, 6 PM Beyond the Querelle Bryony Roberts The Architectural Project and the Historical Project: Tensions, Analogies, Discontinuities Daniel Sherer New Ancients Dora Epstein Jones & Bryony Roberts Call for Observations: Log 32 A Conversation with Elia Zenghelis Cynthia Davidson #hashtag Benjamin Burdick The Critical Problem, Or, Talking Shop Peggy Deamer Can tectonics grasp smoothness? Wes Jones Chandigarh, Noted David Huber Dom-ino: Archetype and Fiction Antoine Picon Letter from Charles Edouard Jeanneret to Auguste Perret, March 21, 1916 Charles Edouard Jeanneret (Le Corbusier) Architectural Coexistence: Twins, Logs, and the Ecology of Things Pia Ednie-Brown Log's Dom-ino Promotion Observations on Architecture and the Contemporary City Cynthia Davidson Mercedes-Benz Museum UNStudio Involution, Ambience, and Architecture Emmanuel Petit Campus Restaurant and Event Space Barkow Leibinger LCV C+S architects Possibilitarianism Sarah Whiting TID Tower 51N4E Herta and Paul Amir Building, Tel Aviv Museum of Art Preston Scott Cohen, Inc. Faster, But Slower Sam Jacob O-14 Reiser + Umemoto Villa Buggenhout OFFICE Kersten Geers David Van Severen EDF Archives Center LAN HL23 Neil M. Denari Architects Lying Fallow Sylvia Lavin Element House MOS In Pursuit of Architecture
September 21, 2013
I am for tendencies Jeffrey Kipnis I want to argue that contemporary scholarship be cast as a sort of ongoing counter-memory to familiar historical narratives Felicity D. Scott I am trying to imagine a radical free-market urbanism Patrik Schumacher I am interested in a project of engaged autonomy Sarah Whiting I do not mind people being innocent, but I hate when they're naive Bernard Tschumi Architecture is a technology that has not yet discovered its agency Elizabeth Diller If I can take a ride in a driverless car on a public street, then I see no reason why my building can't wiggle a little Greg Lynn Taking Stock: Architecture 2013 Anthony Vidler Log Tote Bags Now Available Phyllis Lambert in Conversation with Cynthia Davidson at Van Alen Books
May 2, 7 PM
Georges Teyssot at Van Alen Books
April 24, 7 PM
Le pari(s) de BKK Francois Roche Hong Kong's Shifting Grounds Julie Rose Projects for the Post-Ironic City Emmanuel Petit Piles, Puddles, and other Architectural Irritants Timothy Hyde The stupid matter, or, some thoughts that rhyme and don't Malak Helmy "Nothing Serious" Tom Daniell The Theology Of Tabula Rasa: Walter Benjamin And Architecture in The Age of Precarity Pier Vittorio Aureli Two Hundred and Eighty-Eight Lines Mark Morris Wild Physics: Design at the Outskirts of Town Brian Boigon Building Scenarios: Milstein Hall Cynthia Davidson Signs of Their Time: Calculated Formal Excesses of Digital Ornament, Part I Ingeborg M. Rocker Sleeper(s) Christopher Pierce Representations Massimo Scolari Digital Darwinism: Mass Collaboration, Form-Finding, and the Dissolution of Authorship Mario Carpo Modernity's Opiate, or, The Crisis of Iconic Architecture Simone Brott A Conversation with Yona Friedman Manuel Orazi The Tragedy of the Commons? Sanford Kwinter In the Cause of Architecture: Traversing Design and Making Iain Maxwell & Dave Pigram Architecture as a Practice of Biopolitical Disobedience Beatriz Preciado Volatile Formation Roland Snooks The Report of My Death Sylvia Lavin Architecture on the Wire: Resilience Through Vitality Pia Ednie-Brown Reclaim Resi[lience]stance //......R2 Francois Roche Never Demolish:
Bois-le-Pretre Regrows in Paris
Craig Buckley Contextual Counterpoint in Architecture Charles Jencks The Historicity of the Modern Daniel Sherer Of Raspberries, Rawhide, and Rhetoric Todd Gannon The Return of the Repressed Tom Daniell Location Location Location – or, for whom they built holes Jeffrey Kipnis Tenderness Sylvia Lavin Up Against the Wall: Colin Rowe at La Tourette Anthony Vidler Digital Syle Mario Carpo 53 Questions for Preston Scott Cohen Labor and Architecture: Revisiting Cedric Price's Potteries Thinkbelt Pier Vittorio Aureli Design Hacking: The Machinery of Visual Combinatorics Andrew Witt Wagnerism Embodied Joseph Clarke English Pastoral Andrea Phillips Requiem in White Nicholas de Monchaux What Plastic Wants Brennan Buck Esprit futur Simone Brott 53 Questions for Robert A.M. Stern Luca Farinelli Log part of ARCHIZINES exhibition at Architectural Association 53 Questions for Stan Allen Luca Farinelli Log 23 Launch with Nicholas de Monchaux at Van Alen Books, October 27 Results: Log's Second Ever Postcard Competition Event: Log in Conversation with Mario Carpo at Van Alen Books
September 29
Caroline O'Donnell Gets Ugly . . . The Second Ever Log Postcard Competition Superstudio Resurfaces with its Book of Exorcisms Log and San Rocco: Text vs. Image
at Van Alen Books Thursday, August 9 at 7pm
Sylvia Lavin Exposes Excess Book Talk and Signing:
The Possibility of an Absolute Architecture by Pier Vittorio Aureli
Tom Daniell Tells a Story of Names Ingeborg M. Rocker Traces
The Idea of Style
Patrik Schumacher Campaigns for Parametricism Mark Jarzombek Curates Critical Impossibilities Rem Koolhaas Forges Into Preservation Walter Benjamin's Unconscious Detlef Mertins Anycorp Featured in Exhibition at CCA Observations On Resistance Ariane Lourie Harrison Taking Note of Transformation Sylvia Lavin The Real and the Virtual Cynthia Davidson Meet the Nelsons Wes Jones A Conversation with Charles Gwathmey Cynthia Davidson and Charles Gwathmey test

Piles, Puddles, and other Architectural Irritants

Timothy Hyde

March 2013

Excerpt from Log 27, Spring 2013

An "ugly feeling" such as anxiety emerges not from explicit causation but from the layered stimuli of a given situation, and is further induced by the lingering proximity of its source, condensing and confusing the interlaced causes and elements of the situation rather than apportioning them clearly as would the sharp emotion of anger. The ugly feeling provoked by the South Bank Arts Centre thus summarizes several different instances of a felt antipathy into a generalized but vivid mood: irritation. And the passive manner of irritation, or any ugly feeling, can only be overcome by a complete transformation of the situation from which that feeling emerges. In the absence of that transformation, irritation persists as a simultaneous pulling-together and pushing-apart of person and architecture.

This persistent irritation enables ugly architecture to participate dynamically in the mutable experiential configurations of the city. The diffuseness of the affect and its concomitant lack of narrative resolution are a sharp contrast to the didactic performance of buildings that offer legibility through form or style, and for that reason remain viable during the inevitable evolution of the city. The person who experiences irritation at the South Bank Arts Centre is not the solitary individual, not Pevsner as he skirts puddles to navigate labyrinthine passages. Irritation is the experience of the metropolitan body politic, personified by the man on the omnibus, that standard of reasonableness who figures a sequence of probable choices and outcomes, or to put it more generally, a course of anticipation through a given situation.

At the South Bank Arts Centre, the customary legal formulation that the man on the omnibus "would have anticipated that . . ." meets with the frustrating deferrals of an ugly architecture indeterminate in form and appearance. The social function of the man on the omnibus is not to provide summary judgment but to define a measurement of expectation. The temporal orientation that he brings is not in-the present but rather in-the-future, or more precisely a future anteriority, a future expectation drawn into the decisive context of the present. His irritation does not cast an aesthetic judgment, but proposes expectation, the certainties of the future anterior, and it is these that are disconcerted by the ugliness of the South Bank Arts Centre. Here is a social potential worthy of elaboration, because in its capacity to synthesize different dimensions of vagueness--the irregular form, the stained surface, the irritating affect--ugly architecture is neither unconditionally affirmative nor self-exhaustive, a consequence that solicits a subjective engagement with the mutability of the city.

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Undercroft of South Bank Arts Centre, 2008. Photo: Timothy Hyde.