On Eisenman's Use of History

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    This paper examines the historical work of architect, educator and theorist
    Peter Eisenman (b. 1932) through the filter of his writings on Italian
    architect Giuseppe Terragni (1904–1943). The paper gives parallel focus to
    the range of architectural forms and ideas considered and the kinds of
    analytical drawings used in Eisenman’s decades long engagement with
    Terragni. Adopting a comparative methodology, the paper examines four
    texts published between 1963 and 2003. A number of questions are considered:
    Is one manner of historical analysis a more direct method, one
    more identical to the object of study? What are the differences among
    the texts in terms of the design problems and the spatial effects revealed?
    How might such methods of analysing works from architecture’s
    recent past inform contemporary design practice? The paper suggests
    potential lessons for architectural history as a critical, open-ended project
    and proposes that certain approaches such as Eisenman’s to materials
    and phenomena from architecture’s past can critically advance the
    practice and theory of architecture today
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)55-78
    Number of pages24
    JournalNordic Journal of Architectural Research
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2013


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