The language of architecture is not easily identifiable. One main reason is that not everyone will agree on what constitutes as a “language” in architecture. Expressions like, “the building speaks to me” is not something that usually translates as a reality, rather an emotive feeling that one gets when they are in awe of something they see. What I want to know is what is happening in the moment that the warm and fuzzies wash over a soul while standing in front of one of the most intriguing shapes seen in a while.
The definition of language is “a system of communication which consists of a set of sounds and written symbols which are used by the people of a particular country or region for talking or writing”. However what about the unspoken language that surrounds us every day, regardless of where we are? Perhaps it can be measured in a response one has to a certain line; the way the line falls, bends, or if it were ever so slightly slanted to the left, it would interfere with the composition completely.
My personal delight is finding the [economic] cultural context – even more intriguing if it is bold or bleeds contrast to the local environment. Clearly, this isn’t always the case. Instead, developers and investors buy another piece of land and build on it, leaving waste in another area of the city to abandon. Seems like a rather irresponsible model for urban city planning. In contrast, one move can create the full-circle effect. The building by Jean Nouvel is a truly unconventional piece of art, and achieves a reawakening. It is a statement of harmony in an otherwise tired zone, and brings it back to life.
Set against Frank Gehry’s undulating, organic form [one that surely paved the way for unconventional buildings to shoot up in this local of New York], is a beautiful reflection of color, light, visual lines, and shows off the splendid in the abstract. By day, it comes alive as the sun dances and glows against its body. Clues for the whys and why not of a line aren’t quite clear, but a pane of glass here not there, squares instead of rectangles, greens instead of blues, begin to enter my mind as I study each fraction. Was it all just haphazardly put together the way some perceive it, or a specific calculation of form and purpose that if one line were removed, the whole thing would fall apart?