Tag Archives: The Roots

5. The Core

The root of my roots


Welcome to part one of the triple loop

‘Root of the root’[1]

I have repeated this phrase from a previous post – see page “The Guts” – as it is a fragment of an idea that has always romanced me – the idea of a journey (secret or in plain sight) that requires great effort; ending in nothing, something or surprises. Ever questioning what is the core? What does it mean? How do I hold onto it, translate it and bring it forward to the present from its overlooked resting place?

I was asked by a lecturer to define a core – for myself as a designer and future architect – he assured me that the list would most likely be short and that the items on there would become sustenance in the difficult seasons of practice ahead.

I have three, so far. They are simple, they are mine and they are consuming. I am at times outright evangelical about them; a burgeoning system of beliefs that I hold at my very core.

The first is the belief is that “Architecture Speaks”

 

This is plain, honest and true to me – it speaks – whether we listen is another matter. Whether we make an architecture that articulates plainly and intelligently (very difficult to do), or an architecture that rambles confusingly (often), an architecture that was made in an alternate dialect – planted and engaged – as alien in a foreign landscape (every building that brought change with it, that many cannot enjoy until time has passed and it becomes familiar), or an architecture so filled with stylistic trope, trend and farce that it seems to be inaudible under the heavy costume that adorns it (I’m a bit scared to offer example here…..lets just say many).

Whatever the conversation, regardless of audience, it speaks.

My greatest lament for architecture is when this opportunity to speak, to say something, to communicate is simply disregarded. Note, that even in those instances I believe the architecture still says something, it may not be purposeful, but it still speaks.

I understand that every approach is different, I respect that the world does not need to- nor should it – conform to my core beliefs. I am not that arrogant, all I am saying, is that my soul sings when I hear what the architecture is saying. I may not always understand the words and at times it is beyond my ability to engage with its intelligence, finesse and technique. Yet, even then, I delight in the murmurs I do not understand, because they are audible.

We expect to hear in large, stately buildings, we expect to hear in bespoke builds, we expect to hear in our peoples places and in locations where the world seems to invade the building at every seam with its beauty and transformations throughout the day.

There are some places I like to go a little slower and be more aware of what surrounds me; in places where people do not expect to hear. In the dense, overpowering and busy cbd, in a regular replaceable suburban street, in the fetish of a facade driven development, in a forgotten drive through only town – I believe if I can challenge myself to hear in even those places, regardless of the conversation it brings, then I win. My belief affirmed, despite reality/economy/culture/value etc. It’s talking. I hear it, I found it. The root.

 

Some architecture that is clear, clever and you might enjoy:

Architect: Steven Holl;

Project: Storefront for Architecture

http://www.stevenholl.com/project-detail.php?id=24

 

And some silliness….

a222

Author/Designer of above image regretfully unknown  ; If architecture can speak… grass can dream right?? How MAGICAL!!

wed-mc-212

Author/Designer of above image regretfully unknown  What I like to do, in the places where I live… be a better explorer here and now.

[1] Cummings Edward E, ‘I carry  your heart with me (I carry it in),www.poetryfoundation.org/poem. Accessed 03/08/2012.

 

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4. Favourite Stuff + Things (words+thinking)

Words Words Words


Frolicking with the Pink Elephants

I am quite certain that a part of my brain never moved on from my toddler years, my favourite and most frequently posed question is “Why?”, the not far behind runner up to first place  is “How?” I, like many other people have a curiosity and desire to understand the world I find myself surrounded by and occasionally – in the flurry of my comings and goings – find myself on unplanned treasure hunting adventures where I stumble upon something wonderful.

Today I would like to share with you a something; a somethings that I found on a side wall in a university corridor; printed on a single A4 page and attached to the wall with sticky tape. The humble everyday forgettable nature of its location is surprising to me, as its articulation, intelligence, stark honesty and warmth will, I am sure, speak profoundly to many.

How many times had I walked past this page? Having my blinkers on and schedule at the forefront of my mind – what else have I missed?

This peripheral data whispering over to me from a quiet unassuming place, has become something of a mantra:  a motivator, a soft place to land when I am being too critical of my efforts. When I read over it – which is often – I am reminded of my skin, my humanity, I close my eyes and breathe, I make the deliberate choice to allow myself imperfections and prepare myself to open my eyes again. I prepare myself because I know that in this moment I am allowing the fury of my thoughts, actions and schedule to lose its momentum and die down, I am waiting for the dust to settle. Because it is in that fleeting moment between activity and still – that I can see the poetry rise up out of the most surprising places, with such enchanting grace – and all at once I am renewed, inspired, open to my surroundings and my internal world. I am calm. I am ready to work, think and make.

walter

 

 

 

 

 

 

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1. Who are You?

Building a Home


What on earth have I gotten myself in for?

Stop! Breathe! Don’t panic.

Take a moment to be excited at the amazing possibilities! The fortunate juncture you find yourself at to create such a marvelous thing! Acknowledge the work, toil and dedication it took you to get here – let go, let yourself dream, what do you want this thing – to be and become?

A home? A place? An investment for the future? An expression of yourself? Your point of view? A knitting together of partners, families,  human and/or fur babies? Pause and consider all the significant dwelling places you have known, write them down, recall what was significant about each, what senses were heightened when you were/are in them? What is easiest to remember? Location, light, colour, smell, touch of textile or building materials? What would your transfer forward into your own place now if there were no limits?

If you no longer have access to them – what is occurring in your everyday moments now – when you run smack! BAM! Right back into the memory of these significant places? The shape of a driveway, the scale of a front door?

If this is all starting to seem to fluffy, silly or a waste of time – just hang in there! Let me help you see how it can translate into practical ways of thinking that will assist in making the decisions ahead of you.

For me, I grew up in a rural place so trees are significant and so is open space; later I moved to the city and carved out private nooks in what was to me, a very exposed way of living. Those roots and transitions have influenced how I like to form and approach space – i.e small interconnected spaces leading into, alongside or within much larger, expansive spaces.  

As well as offering an approach, these memories and origins also interrupt my everyday through colour, texture and form. If I feel a certain grain of timber or texture in concrete, see a familiar curve or specific shade of leprechaun green – I remember our lounge room walls – and how after some time we realised the satisfying way they performed and fulfilled the role of ‘back scratcher’ – too humans and pets alike.

Weird? Perhaps.

But to me, I learnt that walls can be made of all sorts of things, it opened my mind to what is possible; it also taught me I am a very tactile person, I like to touch, feel and know what the physical world around me is made of. The overall outcome is curiosity, a valuing of dynamic relationships and a treasured desire to dwell, craft and belong to my places.

How exquisite! Get excited!! Let that energy drive you forward; because you will certainly soar to the highest of places and drop to seemingly endless low valleys. Don’t be overwhelmed, keep hold to the origins because they will sustain, energise and inspire you!

positive-quotes-53 (1)

 

Author/Maker of above Image- Regretfully unknown

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