The City as the Object of Architecture – Maria Gandelsonas

Urban design is a related discipline with architecture in many years and for many cities, we are observing that they were designed by an architect mostly, since there is no term for city planners and so on. In the article that named ‘The City as the Object of Architecture’, we can get clues about the architects’ desire, ideas and approaches to the city. In this post, I will try to explain my observations and understandings from the article.

The main relation between these two disciplines was established on a shared object, the building as the object of both practices.  It is an important point for both disciplines because shaping a building has an impact on the city and changing a city has an impact on the building as well.

For the titles the object and the subject of the urban fantasies, we can observe different scenes for the relation of architecture and urban. Radical changes for urban fantasies such the American city and its gridded plan and the approach to it by European architects, causes for traumatic effects on architecture. In article it is mentioned as ‘urban gaze’ Since there are different gazes for America and European it is not an unexpected event to have trauma on architecture.

Another thing that I would like to mention is clarity, legibility and illegibility of the cities. While reading a city we have a subject that is defied for the city. For Lynch, it is clarity and legibility of the cityscapes. As, we have an idea about Lynch’s approach for the city, I can say that the city has an idea for you to point toward a destination.

According to Rossi, the architects should have a place of viewer for the city if the city and the architectural buildings are seen in terms of production, one is the product of public the other one is for the public. This difference leads us to think about again the relation of the city and architecture, I think. He suggested that reading a city an important subject for the city.

Lastly, I will mention about Venturi and Scott Brown’s approach. Rossi had an idea about switching the city to traditional in order to have a displacement, and Venturi and Scott Brown has the same idea of displacements in another perspective. They impressed by the vanguard culture of 1950-60s. As I understood, Rossi’s approach provides a structural resistance for urban amnesia, Venturi/Scott Brown has an understand for the new observer that in an observation in a motion.  

So, we can say that those three ideas are based on the observation and the legibility of the city in different manners.

I think, it was hard to understand this article, so I tried to reflect what I understood from it.

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