Building is no longer a rhetorical practice of skins over skeletons, describing a conceptual, social, and historically irrelevant speech, but an action committed to the intervention systems on the environment, inherent to such an environment’s culture, understanding culture as a complex system balances such as phenomenon, energetic, physical, historical, social, economic and informative, etc.
The architecture is more than ever a space construction problem and not a space representation matter anymore.
Construction is well part and parcel, inherent to the architectural project and not just the ceremonial gown which consecrates the space. This is how the construction is not just a one-way journey justified in the ship’s “launching”, but a continuous ethics and aesthetics that starts when obtaining the resources, in their manufacturing and rigorous implementation at the work site, in the beauty of intermediate states, to which its implementation in the work site belongs (probably of minor importance) its subsequent exploitation (long-term or ephemeral exploitation) and premature recycling or not of the built and used.
Contemporary anthropologists raise the relevant cultural debate on current production and do so setting as an example the dialectic between symbol and object. Symbols are the products offered to the citizen, understood as a consumer, objects, are those offered to citizens understood as users. We are told, and I here simplify, the symbol is an intermediate product that easily expires, upon which there is little or nothing we can do besides its passive contemplation or use according manuals or conventional rituals. The object, however, it’s meant to be used until it’s worn out, its use value compared to that of change is very high and it lacks of values added by the market economy, so its expiration is null.
These criteria concerning contemporary architecture, would introduce us in a debate between what is related to the object and the symbolic that directly affects the institutional, the participatory, the immediate, the mediate, public, private, etc., etc.
The period which we are going through is still a therapeutic process of palliative measures whose results, fragmentary, inconsistent and urged by the events, have little validity for a disciplinary, sociological, ecological and cultural thorough review.
In the ecological because it is not only (which is now inevitable and urgent) about environmentally adapt the urban and architectural space, but to deepen the energy and environmental prescriptions in short, medium and long terms with the disciplinary and politic transversal interaction it may require.
Culturally because the extension from the natural and urban environment to the NET sphere implies an input of energetic and technological agents in such a qualitative and quantitative magnitude that new cultures, new languages and codes, and new relations between human and nonhuman get built. This, with the fascinating by immense and imaginative, creative territory that goes far beyond wire-less virtual reality centers, video games and ludic environments.
It is necessary to redefine the production paradigm including its role transformation, the very concept of its work object, utility and durability and its own position in relation to the creative work that must derive from the romantic model centered on the creative ceremony axis, to the modern creator prowling periphery, as far as the contemporary model diffuse and incomprehensible position. The gaze, as I said, is no longer macular, and efforts to improve what has already been improved are irrelevant even over an enlarged peripheral view, compiler of a context that’s emergent, disciplinarily marginal and ephemeral as the own durability of the space and form decisions.
The design or projection debate is, above all, a benchmark for reflection over our professional time. Ecological requirements are shown as a hard dialectical territory between soft technologies radical options, to not less radical positions that rely on hard or paleotechnic technologies to make action techniques and procedures. Environmental conditions are so serious and urgent that both positions (and the intermediate ones) are forced to do a common front. There will be a day, when the results will support differentiated propositions on which to monitor experiences, evaluate technical behaviors and results to address the disputes that today already underlie.
General resistance to a new culture (civilization, we could say), that we must “build” to solve our surroundings serious and urgent ecological pathologies, are the problem’s fundamental part. Resistance, posed not only directly from economic structures, private or public, but indirectly from cultural, social, political, etc., operators who fear their positions and interests’ situation, presents a stubborn position and serious consequences to the transformation of our social and environmental surroundings.
All lines and behaviors that make more sustainable cities and in harmony with nature, claim ecology as a moral, an ideology which advises all: social life, politics, thinking, culture, etc.
The action on the environment shouldn’t be considered as an undesirable opinion, but valiantly endured as part of a holistic system, where the progress of humankind (not necessarily meaning development) is the essential objective.