Revisting the Transcendental: Design and Material in Architecture
Husserl’s Transcendental Phenomenology provides a fascinating attempt at challenging the scientific and conventional conceptions of what constitutes difference, and as a consequence of difference, categories. Embedded in the Western heritage of architecture are numerous intersubjective agreements on history and theory, yet a lateral comparison of built work and settings over time reveals a seemingly ever evolving, and on occasion revolutionary set of artifacts and ideas. The paper suggests that the media of architecture themselves set into motion a search and never-concluding set of iterations and provisional knowings further complexified and enabled by changing technologies and cultures. The paper reviews shortcomings of Alberti’s theory of proportions, Semper’s architectural materialist theory, and the most recent computer enabled biomorphic strategies. It is possible that at its heart transcendentalism in architecture is epistemological-phenomena gathered as a result of ontological investigative forces vs. Platonic forms. The paper concludes that there is a bridge between teacher and student through Heidegger’s (1971) “The Origin of a Work of Art”. Here the act of ideation, thinking, and making in dialectic with matter and creation of space, light, and, indeed, the creation of time itself are posed as originating from the intuitive and transcendental.
KeywordsRice Straw Phase Change Material Transcendental Phenomenology Pure Consciousness Pure Possibility
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