Truth’s Architectural Graffiti and Ornament as Crime

Truth Tag 1

[original image viaTruth]

A Polish artist working under the pseudonym “Truth” creates what is perhaps best described as architectural graffiti — minimal, abstract forms made of polystyrene which he (or perhaps she) then attaches to buildings. The objects are intended to respond in some way to the architecture upon which they are installed, but while I appreciate the work, the relationship between object and building is obtuse at best. I do, however, find the idea of architectural graffiti insanely compelling. Taken as a criminal act, it gives strange new life to Adolf Loos’ immortal—and sometimes immoral—1908 essay, “Ornament and Crime,” in which he describes ornament in terms not far removed from how many people think of today’s graffiti. Continue reading “Truth’s Architectural Graffiti and Ornament as Crime”

Art From Disaster

Almost 3 years after Hurricane Katrina, many New Orleans homes still bear the spray-paint markings used by rescue workers who were searching for survivors. On the facade of their house in the Bywater neighborhood, some residents have installed a metal sculpture permanently memorializing these new urban hieroglyphics.

New Uses for Ceramics

French architecture firm and Life Without Buildings favorite, Lacaton Vassal, were invited by CRAFT (Centre de Recherche sur les Arts du Feu et de la Terra a Limoges) to propose new uses for Limoges porcelain.

Their solution is nothing less than inspired: a procelain overlay for structural steel. Designed for steel profiles H, I, and U, the ceramic tiles add both fireproofing and a decorative element to the steel columns.Great idea, right? I’d love to see this go into production, although I do have one suggestion. For the first run, let’s appropriate the world’s largest ceramic – Jeff Koons’ Michael Jackson and Bubbles.

Sure, it may have sold at Sotheby’s for $5,600,000, but I think melting down this travesty of art and applying it to a steel column might really give it some integrity; an extra layer of meaning reminiscent of Robert Rauschenberg’s Erased de Kooning.Plus…you know, we get the added benefit of MELTING A HIDEOUS CERAMIC STATUE OF MICHAEL JACKSON AND HIS MONKEY.

Erwin Wurm

This weekend, a friend introduced me to the work of Austrian artist Erwin Wurm, whom I suppose could best be described as a conceptual sculptor. His medium varies – from drawings to photography to foam to performance – but regardless of form and material, there are common themes throughout the work. Most notably, a sort of demystifying of art and it’s related fields – a figurative, and sometimes literal, deflation.The following examples aren’t particularly representative of his work as a whole, but since this is supposed to be an architecture blog, they’re probably the most interesting to you, dear reader. Plus, the field of architecture can always use a little deflating.
Fat House Moller/adolf Loos
Am I a House?
House Attack. image via flickr usr Dom Dada]
More of Wurm’s work can be seen at Artnet.