Six Canonical Projects by Rem Koolhaas
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Six Canonical Projects by Rem Koolhaas

By Ingrid Böck
Free
Book Description


Dutch architect, architectural theorist and urban thinker Rem Koolhaas (born 1944) has been a protagonist of the international architectural avant-garde since the 1970s; his numerous worldwide awards include the Pritzker Prize in 2000 for his lifetime achievement. Through a series of essays, this book interprets his many buildings and projects by drawing on Koolhaas' own theoretical oeuvre of polemics, manifestos, interviews, books such as Delirious New Yorkand his so-called "design patents." In these writings, Koolhaas articulates a design method that links theory and practice, whereby an idea is applied to several projects over a period of time, so that it can continuously evolve. This book not only orients this method within architectural history, but also shows how it repositions the function of the authors or the architects themselves.



Print and epub editions available from Jovis.

Table of Contents
  • Cover
  • Title
  • Contents
  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • Biographical Notes
  • 1. Wall: Exodus, or the Voluntary Prisoners of Architecture, London 1972
    • The Wall as a Means of Division, Exclusion, and Difference
      • Good Half and Bad Half of the City: Exodus, or The Voluntary Prisoners of Architecture
      • Decision-Making and the Authority of the Plan
      • Somatology and the Fictitious Entity of the Prison
      • Deterministic Form and Flexibility
      • Delimiting the World and Enabling Difference
      • Taking Place and the Sacred Nature of City Walls
    • The Ideal City and Other Models of Utopian Life
      • The Closed and the Open Society as Ideal Worlds
      • Nova Insula Utopia, or The Nowhere Place
      • Urban Vacancy and the Disappearance of Public Space
      • Reinventing Utopia, or Daily Life Beyond Necessity
    • Utopia Zero Degree, or Freedom Beyond Planning
      • The Manhattan Skyscraper as Utopia Zero Degree
      • The City as Script and Social Condenser
      • Amplifying the Program within Structures of Control
      • The Wall as a Means of Freedom Beyond Planning
  • 2. Void: Ville Nouvelle Melun-Sénart, Paris 1987
    • Failed Agencies of Modern Urbanism
      • Planning Makes No Difference
      • Chaos and Nothingness: Ville Nouvelle Melun-Sénart
      • Metropolis and Disorder, or The City Without Qualities
    • Void and Future Development
      • The Watertight Formula of the Modern City
      • Tabula Rasa and Prospective Preservation
      • The Grid as Field of Projection
    • Void as Environment of Control and Choice
      • Infrastructure and Kit-of-Parts Architecture
      • Experiments of the Non-Plan and the Unhouse
      • The City as Social Work of Art
    • The Armature of Genericity
      • Critical Theory and the Architect’s Status
      • The End of the Dialectic City
      • The Operating System of the Roma Quadrata
      • City Planning and Bricolage Technique
  • 3. Montage: Maison à Bordeaux, France 1994–1998
    • Dismantling Modernist Fragments
      • The Armature of Modernism: The Maison à Bordeaux
      • Architectural Promenade and Sequential Perception
      • Dismantlement and Disappearance
      • Between Modernist and Surrealist Ideas
      • Transgression and the Accursed Share in Architecture
    • The Rational and Irrational Side of Architecture
      • Architecture as Paranoid Critical Activity
      • Maritime Analogy
      • Un Cadavre Exquis
      • Metaphoric Planning and the Skyscraper Diagram
    • Montage and Filmic Reality
      • The Metropolis as Manifesto of Modern Life
      • Inventing Reality through Writing
      • Post-Structuralist Theory, or The Whole, Real, There
      • Montage and Creative History
  • 4. Trajectory: Dutch Embassy, Berlin 1999–2003
    • The Trajectory as Lived Experience of the Body
      • The Wall and the Cube: The Dutch Embassy in Berlin
      • The Pliable Surface as Inside-Out City
      • The Car as Modernist Sign of Motion and Lived Experience
      • Psychogeographic Mapping of the City
      • Architecture as Event, Transcript, and Folie
    • Identity and Aura, or the Trajectory as Historical Narrative
      • Historical Aura as Source of Identity
      • Displacement, Appropriation, and Erasure of Identity
      • Projecting National Identity, or The Typical and the Unique
      • The Dioscuri Motif, or Standardization and Individuality
    • Junkspace as the End of the Typical and the Generic
      • The Typical and the Generic
      • Junkspace as Dérive
      • Generic versus Brand
      • Typology and Flexibility, or Frame for Change
      • The Trajectory as Diagram of Performance
  • 5. Infrastructure: Public Library, Seattle 1999–2004
    • Expanding the Program of Semi-Public Space
      • Structures for Non-Specific Events
      • The Diagrammatic Section: The Seattle Public Library
      • Stable and Unstable Zones, or The Event-Structure of Semi-Public Space
    • Infrastructure Diagrams of Circulation
      • The Dialectic between Needle and Globe Structure
      • The Elevator as a Diagram of Discontinuity
      • The Escalator as a Diagram of Continuity and Circulation
      • Shopping and the Public Sphere
    • Technological Determinism and the Public Sphere
      • The Technological Sublime as Social Event
      • Infrastructural Techno-Utopias
      • Public Space as “Air-Conditioning Project”
  • 6. Shape: CCTV, Beijing 2002–2008
    • The Outdated Typology of the Skyscraper
      • An Adaptive Species: The CCTV Building in Beijing
      • New Typologies of the City
      • Shape as Content and Container
    • Neo-liberal Conditions of Architectural Practice
      • Plasticity, or The Dialectic between Form and Shape
      • Post-Criticality
      • Originality and the Avant-Garde
  • Conclusion
  • Bibliography
  • Name Index
  • Imprint
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