Friday, April 06, 2007

verify in field

I've been working on some as-built drawings, which tends to skew your mental state the same way playing Mario Kart change the way you drive immediately after you play it. For the last few hours, dimensions have been paramount. Actual thicknesses and distances, not ideal or even perceived measurements, are what rule the day. It makes me wonder what as-builts could be for a totally alien architecture... what if your existing measurements were of transparency and clarity, or trace minerals in the air? What if I was tabulating the existing smell?

Architecture, as it is taught, is obsessed with dimensions. This is rightfully so; the first step to telling someone how to build something is to tell them how big it is. But, given my current employ as a midcentury modern crusader, I am left wondering if perhaps we're not a little too obsessed with precise alignments and modules. When architects talk about "flushing things out," they're not discussing ritual purging. In all of this painstaking work nudging surfaces into position, we might be missing something equally vital about other characterizations of the space. Like, for instance, what it is for. Or how it sounds.

Or maybe we should just go metric so I don't have to deal with sixteenths.

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