Powerlines (Subject to Architecture).
The experiential zoning of architecture, in effect the phenomenological explication of significant difference in architecture, permits us a glimpse of our own collective interior. It is our key parts, as it were, that are put on display with the key parts of architecture. Our perception of our environment is the betrayer of our innermost structure. Moreover, the externality of the world is no longer just a projection of our interpretation and desire onto a naturally occurring screen (or its divisions: horizons, grounds, orthagonals, vanishing points, colour and texture) but, with the total dominion of human culture, is now the built exteriorisation of the internal. Product of those restless persistent portions of the self, its very building blocks perhaps, which agitate their way into the outside world marking it irrevocably (or onto a world that once was outside, that once was made elsewhere, that is, not by ourselves, as it is now - even if made in ignorance of what it is that we are making). In architecture we see the layers of the self incarnate in stone and the return of these parts to influence the self from which they came. A power manifested in the return trip, the agitation, of the parts of architecture, now in turn inciting and provoking the parts of the self it calls upon into ever greater expansion, unfolding into ever greater dimensions, into ever greater dominance within the constellation of the self.
Symbiosis. The parts of the self: the parts of architecture. The parts of the self: empowered and empowering, stimulated and stimulating, making and made by the key urban levels and their attendant symbolism. The parts of the self. Sacralised by the (vision of the) rim of the world at the skyline. Sexualised by the incitement of the window (opening in the canyon of the urban uterus, puncture in the skin of the urban body). Dressed by the shop manikins and stares of the ground, stares that provide one with the passing masks of the self. The parts of architecture. Parts which display differing types of power over the self, the power to incite parts of the self, to render them awake and to encourage their growth. Power relations which themselves echo, were perhaps (once long, long ago) a product of human culture of the human cultural organs, social-psychological growths on the body of the mind, pressures that formed and reformed the mind in their own image (performatives such as: the sacrifice, the gift, the set aside, the commodity). The tangles roots of these interrelated fields are to be found strung out between the Neolithic revolution of the self (the origin of settled life, habitations and the earliest civilisations; Ur vision of the eye's encounter with its new home) and the epochal aspects of the self as found in the history of architecture. The dialectic of self and architecture. The social bond incarnate in stone.
The architecture of the self.
Copyright 2004 Peter Nesteruk