View Single Post
Old Posted Feb 19, 2019, 10:30 PM
The Best Forumer The Best Forumer is offline
Registered User
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 1,434
Originally Posted by Duffstuff129 View Post
I've got to say - I'm pretty surprised at the reaction to this one. The fact that it was apparently commissioned with some kind of intent of being realized makes me tremendously excited. It's obviously incredibly gaudy and, were it to ever move forward even an inch toward actual development, the ornamentation would certainly be toned down one or ten notches, but that's what makes this tower such an exciting prospect!

The idea of such a heavily ornamented building, where the ornamentation is actually more than mere ornamentation, to the point where it even seems (see note 1) to constitute the actual structure of the building, is a fascinating hybrid, in my opinion of: 1. the ideas that underlie the structural engineering of buildings like the John Hancock Center and Minoru Yamasaki's WTC, in which the facade's most interesting visual elements are the structural supports; and 2. art deco sensibilities, in which strong lines and culturally powerful symbolism drive the aesthetic.

I simply love the boldness of this tower - it would be a marvel for the entire world - a truly puzzling piece which, I have no doubt, would quickly become among the most famous New York landmarks. Imagine the staid silhouettes of the New York skyline livened up by this playful, yet beautifully sinister parti. And then imagine standing beneath it, making out clearly the monolithic details, that would in other buildings be invisible, as you puzzle out this web of symbols - eagles, fans, gears - who knows?

This building is clearly meant to be strange and fascinating and I for one am willing to allow myself to be swept up in its gaudy excitement. Why? Because there would be nothing like it in the world - and no one would ever attempt to imitate it. And the final design, once it is refined and, hopefully, merely made more elegant, yet no less detailed or bold, would become the envy of all the cities in the world, even as it is maligned in its own time as too large, too strange, and too uncharacteristic of its city. Just as they said of the Eiffel Tower, the Empire State Building, and nearly every beautiful monstrosity that dares to be absurd.

I made my first post in many years to express this thought - I'm surprised that a skyscraper forum was drawn in by something so massive and whimsical!

Note 1: I mean that the building would appear to be supported by its ornamentation, even though I'm quite sure that it would have no or nearly no actual structural relevance.

In many ways, the words of a forumer come easy. We risk very little, yet enjoy a position over those who offer up their work and their selves to our judgment. We thrive on negative criticism, which is fun to write and to read. But the bitter truth we must face is that in the grand scheme of things, the average piece of junk is probably more meaningful than our criticism designating it so. But there are times when a architect truly risks something and that is in the discovery and defense of the new. The world is often unkind to new talent, new creations. The new needs friends. With this tower, we experienced something new, an extraordinary creation from a singularly unexpected source. To say that both the building and its maker have challenged my preconceptions about fine architecture is a gross understatement. They have rocked me to my core. To many of us have forgotten what fine architecture is about. It is about towers such as this.
The suburbs are second-rate. Cookie-cutter houses, treeless yards, mediocre schools, and more crime than you think. Do your family a favor and move closer to the city.
Reply With Quote