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Architecture in the Age of Divided Representation
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This book illuminates a critical issue: the place of creativity in a time dominated by modes of thought that reduce design to a method of production. Vesely's insightful studies advance a number of compelling arguments: that the Greek sense of praxis can be identified with the phenomenological description of pre-reflective experience; that the absence of a 'ground' for contemporary culture need not lead to relativism because history itself confers cultural orientation; and that the prospect of representation in contemporary architecture can only be understood in the light of its historical antecedents from the development of pictorial perspective through to cubism surrealism and most recently telepresence. -- David Leatherbarrow, University of Pennsylvania

About the Author

Dalibor Vesely is a Director (Emeritus) of graduate studies in the department of architecture and member of Emmanuel College at the University of Cambridge.

Reviews

"Vesely's book is...intelligible, generous in form and content, concisely illustrated and designed to last." -- Helen Mallinson, Building Design "Spanning from medieval optics to perspectival invention, and from baroque rhetoric to Cartesianism and the paradoxical instrumentality of contemporary aesthetics, Dalibor Vesely's critical-phenomenological thesis establishes a new theoretical datum for all discourse concerning the predicament of architecture in our time." --Kenneth Frampton, Ware Professor of Architecture, Columbia University "This remarkable book is unique in its brilliant density, every word distilled from a thousand thoughts, articulating possibilities for the practice of architecture by weaving together the deep threads of the Western tradition, from the Middle Ages to the present day. Vesely demonstrates the centrality of architecture to culture--not as a dream, nor as an aesthetic or functional artifact, but as a communicative practice. This rare work, combining historical erudition with philosophical insight, lives up to Socrates' demand that wisdom remain alive, even when written down; a 'living, breathing word.'" --Alberto Perez-Gomez, Saidye Rosner Bronfman Professor of the History of Architecture, McGill University "This is an extraordinary and wonderful book. Deeply researched but unlike any other study in architectural history, it both illuminates and stirs apprehension, a deep unease." --Robin Middleton, Columbia University "This book illuminates a critical issue: the place of creativity in a time dominated by modes of thought that reduce design to a method of production. Vesely's insightful studies advance a number of compelling arguments: that the Greek sense of praxis can be identified with the phenomenological description of pre-reflective experience; that the absence of a 'ground' for contemporary culture need not lead to relativism, because history itself confers cultural orientation; and that the prospect of representation in contemporary architecture can only be understood in the light of its historical antecedents, from the development of pictorial perspective through to cubism, surrealism, and most recently telepresence." --David Leatherbarrow, University of Pennsylvania

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