Peter Zumthor Thinking Architecture

Today I spent most of my time reading Peter Zumthor book Thinking Architecture. In these essays Peter Zumthor expresses his motivation in designing buildings, which speak to our emotions and understanding in many different ways.

Here are a few excerpts from these essays.

“There was a time when I experienced architecture without thinking about it.” (7)

“Construction is the art of making a meaningful whole out of may parts. Buildings are witness to the human ability to construct concrete things. ” (11)

“There is no interruption of the overall impression by small parts that have nothing to do with the object’s statement. Our perception of the whole is no distracted by inessential details. Every touch, every join, every joint is there in order to reinforce the idea of the quiet presence of work” (15)

The architect mist look for rational construction and forms for edges and joints, for the points where surfaces intersect and different materials meet. (15)

Details, when they are successful, are not mere decoration. They do not distract or entertain. They lead to an understanding of the whole of which they are an inherent part. (15)

…a detail such as two nails in the floor that hold the steel plates by the worn-out-door-step. (16)

“…buildings…we do not pay any special attention to them… and yet it is virtually impossible to imagine the place where they stand without them… buildings appear to be anchored firmly in the ground. They give the impression of being a self-evident part of their surroundings and they seem to be saying: “ I am as you see me and I belong here.” (17)

… design such buildings, buildings that, in time, grow naturally into being a part of the form and history of their place. (17)

Working drawing are detailed and objective. Created for the craftsmen who are to give the imagined object a material form, they are free of associative manipulation. (18)

If a work of architecture consists of forms and contents that combine to create a strong fundamental mood powerful enough to affect us, it may possess the qualities of a work of art. (19)

Architecture’s artistic task is to give this still expectancy a form. (19)

Geometry is about the laws of lines, plane surfaces, and three-dimensional bodies in space. (21-22)

Spatial composition: the closed architectural body that isolates space within itself, and the open body that embraces an area of space that is connected with the endless continuum. The extension of space can be made visible through bodies such as slabs or poles pleaced freely or in rows in the spatial expanse of a room.” (22)

The creative act in which a work of architectire comes into being goes beyond all historical and technical knowledge. Its focus is on the dialogue wuth the issues of our time. (23)

12/05/2010 | Sarah | Comments

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