Special Sessions | Chairs
İnci BASA, Prof. Dr. Middle East Technical University, Department of Architecture, Ankara.
ARCHITECTURE THEORY-WISE: A NOVEL IMPETUS TO FOUR ENDURING THEMES
Despite current doubts regarding its potency and vitality, theory matters. New truths and conditions in socio-cultural, economic and political realms suggest the weakening, if not the outright impossibility of strong doctrines and totalizing ideas in the twenty-first century. Whether this phenomenon implies the failure of theory has emerged as a point of contention in numerous disciplines. The account of this special session should not be considered as a futile architectural extension of this argument. Nor, should it be considered as an imprudent commitment to the cachet of architectural theory. Through its four essays, Architecture Theory-Wise marks the position of theory as an enabler of thinking/materializing otherwise. Those, who understand theory in architecture not as a matter of representation, but a matter of entanglement, as architecture is entangled with a multitude of complex socio-ethical, politico-economic, and spatiotemporal connections, know that there always exist terrains for frameworks beholding either pro tem tensions and contingencies, or long-lasting paradigms and atemporal insights. Still, how theory situates itself on new terrains emerges as a relevant concern of the recent theoretical turn, which is now favored by architectural intelligentsia through a myriad of texts. Today’s prevailing cognizance implies that architectural theory may no longer master the core of the discipline through authoritative tones; similarly, erudite enthusiasts may not place it in margins. Rather, it is perhaps expeditiously everywhere, though, with recognition of a meticulous particularity. The new-modern-culture milieu motivates multiple forms, scales, and tactics of architectural thinking; and accordingly, creates new tolerance zones in the mainstream conception of theory that has long been criticized for its limited energy and hegemonic discourse. The abundance of knowledge and hyperawareness of researchers, as the twofold outcome of the new era, manifest not only new domains of inquiry but also appropriate new encounters with some enduring themes. Without loosening their theoretical grips, the essays of the session explore a constellation of themes, disciplinarity, medium, techne and matter, through which architectural understanding materializes in different ways.
Serap DURMUŞ ÖZTÜRK, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Karadeniz Technical University, Department of Architecture, Trabzon.
MATERIALITY AS ARCHI-TEXT(URE)
In the field of architecture, theory, design, practice, actors, materials, and research have been transforming. MateriART symposium define materiality as an umbrella concept that embraces all the fragments of the whole materialization process starting from architectural imagination, conceptualization, and design to the act of construction. In case this special session led the concept of materiality, an alternative perspective, that is, the concept of archi-text(ure).
According to Etymology Dictionary, materiality is a concept in 1520s, “that which is the matter of something, material substance”, from Modern Latin materialitas, from materialis “of or belonging to matter”, from Latin materia “matter, stuff”. From 1560s as “state or quality of being material”; 1640s as “quality of being important to matters at hand, essentiality”. Besides the word text is from Latin textus “style or texture of a work”, literally “thing woven”, from texere “to weave, to join, fit together, braid, interweave, construct, fabricate, build”. On the other hand the word texture refers to “structural character” meaning that is recorded from 1650s.
The term materiality has been heard in architectural critics and debates last years, representing a hot architectural topic. Its meaning refers to the touchy-feely nature of material used in a building design –what a building is made of and what it feels like (Porter, 2004). American historian Sarah Williams Goldhagen sees materiality as seeded in the existentialist philosophy of Jean-Paul Sartre and the search for a heightened state of mind (Forty, 2000). That is, its meaning is less concerned with materials and more with how people are, or can be, affected by materials.
If this material is a text or a texture, how can we deal with it in the field of architecture? And how can we re-define it? Is it a necessity in architecture? Is it a literal form or a natural element of architecture? Is it possible to say that the term archi-text(ure) as a new interpretation of materiality? How does one approach a study of the archi-text(ures) of materialization process? Can we evolve the archi-text(ure) concept into an architectural fiction of teaching, learning, building, experiencing, reading and writing? For these questions and more cases, this session will question archi-text(ure) relationships in the reconstruction and deconstruction of the concept of materiality. Thus the session will familiarize and restructure our architectural knowledge via a set of metaphors, discourses, narratives and ideas of archi-text(ure).
Zeynep ULUDAĞ, Prof. Dr. Gazi University, Department of Architecture, Ankara.
Esin BOYACIOĞLU, Prof. Dr. Gazi University, Department of Architecture, Ankara.
DISCUSSING ARCHITECTURAL KNOWLEDGE IN BROADER CONTEXT FROM DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVES
Architectural knowledge has always been disseminated in the domain of theoretical and/or practical spheres of the discipline. This broad terrain encompasses many different approaches and discourses bridging the gap between the two. This session aims to discuss the domain of architectural knowledge in a broad perspective and to contribute to the field of architecture by introducing different conceptual backgrounds that dwell on this critical search.
Considering the epistemological evolution of architectural knowledge there is always a search for a common ground between theory and practice. Theoretical knowledge is not only the knowledge of a building or architectural object, it is not only the knowledge of technical issues but also the knowledge of aesthetics, history and practical processes. In that sense, knowledge of architecture has multi-disciplinary and multi-dimensional relations.
Since architecture as a discipline is about the creation and production of space, it has spatial, social and cultural bonds. The different codes and data enhance its interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary characteristics.
In this session the discussions will highlight the significance of different perspectives in the production of architectural knowledge, such as its’ transforming characteristics, changing formations of design and production processes, changing actors, its travel through geographies and its blurring boundaries. Within this process the knowledge of theory/history and practice will be discussed in association with different methods and discourses in different approaches.
One of the discussions will focus on the definition of space and time as an associate entity not two distinct subjects. Studies on time-space relationships in several disciplines but especially in the disciplines like geography and history, started to emphasize the significance of both spatial and temporal dimensions in social theory.
*Special sessions' themes will be upload to the website as soon as possible.
Special Sessions | Themes*