Diptych II 


Nur Çağlar

Adnan Aksu

Published Jul 16, 2020

Architecture is a multifaceted, multi-layered, fragmentary medium with many different contents, covering information and practical experience of varying sizes. The intertwined parts are dynamic and mobile, constantly changing place and size, while some disappear, new ones appear instead. Each piece produces various images as it moves randomly back and forth, up and down, and rotates around its axis. Thus, over time, the texture of the medium tightens and dissolves, its look and form changes, its meaning, emphasis, monologues, and dialogues diversify. The medium that is continually re-emerging develops, new and renewed continuously looks appear. Every new look is a new image, therefore a new way of seeing. Ways of seeing[i] are the understanding that forms our actual and intellectual accumulation in architecture. In this context, the diptych is interpreted as a metaphor object to handle the intricate texture with similar plural relations and dynamic, fragmentary qualities. In this way, the power of the metaphor both clarifies the object and the spheres of description also. Instead of being stuck with the rigidity of directly defining the object, it is adopted that free and inventive creativity opens the object to indirect explanations by diversifying the spheres of description. Therefore, the descriptions are based on how the diptych is instrumentalized to increase the potency of the medium rather than what is a diptych.

In this context, the fact that architecture is a metaphor/object in creating, producing and reproducing the visual/pictorial and verbal/discursive tools of its knowledge is the first of the planes of definitions. The diptych remains established at the sphere of thought/speculation of architecture as a tool that tends to match the parts thought to contradict or in conflict and create twinship[ii], such as ongoing and emerging architecture in terms of its formal qualities, industrial and social services of architecture, architectural objects that sell and surprise, materialization process, and medium, solve problems and discover problems, rhetoric and ergonomics, provocation and innovation, going towards different futures and going around parallel universes and many more. The diptych is established at the sphere of an inventive model/process, a new method/way that we want to develop to discover the potential of the dispersed nebula accumulation of architectural medium, to give meaning to it, thus to reconstruct the notion of architecture. The diptych offers endless matching/pairing up[iii]/duplication[iv]/twoness[v] possibilities. In this way, diptych becomes likely to be defined at the sphere of a puzzle/exercise that gets more complex as solved or an infinite game/research.

Instead of focusing on the object of architecture itself, diptych undertakes the establishment of the relations of the conditions, objects, and elements that form it. Thus, it is established in the sphere of creating an integrative construct/context by associating the space in which the objects take place and the other temporal and spatial objects. This context also includes the user/viewer. It is defined at the sphere of repositioning the viewer/object relation, suggesting that, in the face of the object of architecture, it is a factor which is dynamic, interpreting, and sometimes changing the structure of the object.

Many data are reached in pieces, and part of the information generation process is the way for matching those pieces and adjusting the matches to one another. It requires information, but it also provides information. The diptych is established at the sphere of multi-dimensional canvas/ground for the reproduction of information.

There are many things to match from inside and outside of the architectural medium. Furthermore, no reason/rule for these matches is determined by neither compulsory nor direct/sensible content. The diptych is established at the sphere of given/selected matches by looking at the qualities of the matched things. The diptych is established at the sphere of conflict/consensus due to the nature of the relationship between the converging content that it brings together consistently, sometimes by abstracting, sometimes by adapting.

Interpreting is also the process of accumulating information, examining, and analyzing. These processes are embedded in the object. Examination, also defined as research, is a deed that includes various methods such as observation, listening, questioning, interview, recording, accumulation of samples, experiments, storage, discovery, analysis. Therefore, these planes of definition are expected to offer a unique knowledge/experience to update the architectural medium.


[i]Berger thinks that 'Image is a sight which has been recreated or reproduced, it is an appearance, or a set of appearances, which has been detached from the place and time in which it first made its appearance and preserved for a few moments or a few centuries. Every image embodies a way of seeing. Every image embodies a way of seeing, our perception or appreciation of an image also depends upon our way of seeing.'

Berger, J. Ways of seeing: a book. London: British Broadcasting Corporation. 1977. pp. 9-10

[ii] Foucault argues that the one form of similitude is emulation (aemulatio), and there is something in emulation of the reflection and the mirror. He says that 'For emulation is a sort of natural twinship existing in things; it arises from a fold in being, the two sides of which stand immediately opposite to one another. Paracelsus compares this key duplication of the world to the image of two twins 'who resemble one another completely without being possible for anyone to say which of them brought its similitude to the other.''

Foucault, M. The order of things: an archaeology of the human sciences. London: Tavistock Publications. 1986. pp. 21-22

[iii] Ekiztepe believes that it is impossible not to realize the interaction field that comes into existence by pairing up two things. This field acts like the desired field that is open to inviting anything else. There is no definite boundary. It has the potential to expand its boundary. It seems betwixt and between that is not fully or adequately either of two things.

Ekiztepe, A. An Experimental Approach to the Understanding of Architecture Through Concept-Pairs. Master thesis. TOBB University of Economics and Technology. Ankara. 2017. pp. 11

[iv] When Foucault explains emulation, which is one of the similitude forms, he mentions the two confronting figures which seize upon one another. He says, 'The two confronting figures seize upon one another. Like envelops like, which in turn surrounds the other, perhaps to be enveloped once more in a duplication which can continue ad infinitum. Unlike the elements of convenientia, the links of emulation do not form a chain but rather a series of concentric circles reflecting and rivalling one another.'

Foucault, M. The order of things: an archaeology of the human sciences. London: Tavistock Publications. 1986. pp. 21-23

[v] According to Eisenman, 'The new architecture must include the fear of losing control of design because the design is the expression of man overcoming nature. There seem to be four conditions which might seem to outline this condition of losing control.' He says that one of the aspects of it is something called twoness. 'There are many different twonesses in architecture which already exist; One is the twoness of form and function; another is the twoness of structure and ornament. However, these are hierarchical categories. They exist in opposition as independent conditions.'

Eisenman, P. ‘En Terror Firma: In Trails of Grotextes’. Deconstruction: Omnibus Volume. Eds, Papadakis A., Cooker C. and Benjamin A. NY Rizzoli International Publications. 1989. pp. 26-27


Funded by the Erasmus+ Program of the European Union. However, European Commission and Turkish National Agency cannot be held responsi­ble for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.


Project Coordinator

TOBB University of Economics and Technology

Department of Architecture

Sögütözü Cad. No: 43 Sögütözü/Ankara


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