This remarkable book explores the origins of architectural beauty in the dynamics of sexual desire. It is a daring departure from the conventional genres of architectural writing and a completely original reflection on the erotics of architecture. Pérez-Gómez retells the love story of the famous Renaissance novel/treatise Hypnerotomachia Poliphili in late twentieth-century terms. The original work, long a cult book among architects and regarded as one of the most enigmatic books ever published, takes place in a forest. In the retelling, the forest has been replaced by the high tech and pop environment of appliances and airports. Both versions exist somewhere in the borderland between fiction, theory, and pornography. The text is paralleled by a running sequence of photographic collages merging the body and the machine.
The original hero of Hypnerotomachia, Poliphilo, is lost in a dark forest searching for his lover Polia, for harmony and order in a vast maze of ruined antiquities - caverns, pyramids, theaters, and temples that are described with an almost fanatic erudition and unbridled lust. This modern version of the tale imaginatively frames our own dark forest in terms of the technology that has become our "nature." The hero finds himself in the most inhospitable and uncontrollable of spaces, the space of contemporary travel: in an airport and in flight. His voyage does not take him to real buildings, but rather to a jungle of deconstructivist forms - metal grids, plastic domes, computer hardware, blueprints, construction sites, and paintings where the erotic roots of architectural meaning are disclosed and the limitations of a world subjugated by doctrine and tradition are revealed. The sites visited range from the Carceri of Piranesi and the works of Ledoux, Boullée, and Lequeu to recent theoretical and architectural projects by Hejduk, Rossi, Libeskind, and Eisenman.
Alberto Pérez-Gómez is the Saidye Rosner Bronfman Professor of the History of Architecture at McGill University. He has published two volumes of poetry and three books on architecture, the most recent of which, Architecture and the Crisis of Modern Science, received the Society of Architectural Historians' Alice Davis Hitchcock Award.
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Alberto Pérez-Gómez is Saidye Rosner Bronfman Professor of the History of Architecture at McGill University. He is the author of Architecture and the Crisis of Modern Science (MIT Press, 1983) and (with Louise Pelletier) Architecural Representation and the Perspective Hinge (MIT Press, 1997).Review:
"A brilliantly sharp and original reflection on the pop aspects of our visual culture.... Readers interested in Renaissance mysticism, in architecture and the technology culture, and in the erotics of comic book machismo, will be eager to read Pérez-Gómez."
—George L. Hersey, Yale University
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Descrizione libro The MIT Press, 1992. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria P11026216129X
Descrizione libro The MIT Press. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. 026216129X New Condition. Codice libro della libreria NEW6.1783029