Underneath any material form lies a dialectical consideration with its definite disappearance, its in-materiality, its destruction, its ultimate erasure. Demolition is attractive because it recalls the ephimeral act of being.
In an attempt to critically question the relevance of the aesthetics of demolition in contemporary artistic and architectural discourse we would like to engage with a broader understanding of our context and current times. It is hard to generalize it and truly grasp the spirit of our era while we are still in it, but there are current tendencies and trends that leads us to speculate upon certain aspects that characterise our present times. Is there a reason behind our current predilection for specific types of spaces? for specific types of materials? for finished or unfinished interiors? for raw materials? for spaces with infinite arrangement potentials?
Buildings are soon to be no more and Demolition is an act that reacts towards the notion of authorship, of identity, of context and spatial potentialities.
An interview with PH in the year of 2015, a world reknown theoricist and scholar, was not innocent at all. In it the also art historian explores the historical and philosophical attributes in the value of demolition and its aesthetics. Taking Alois Riegl seminal essay The Modern Cult of Monuments: Its Essence and Its Development as his departing point, PH continues to ask the need for demolishing, for the preservation of monuments and the need to create.
In a broader context, two cities in the world came to be exemplary specimens of a dialectic reflection of what PH considered to be the tension between to keep or not, the
romantic idea of the past and the inevitable ambition to build. Those cities were City One and City Two, the world’s most contrasting realities regarding demolition and preservation.
Thoughts about the need of demolishing and the underlining consequences of it, triggered discussions in which reflections about those radical contexts were framed by demolition.
As an indirect consequence, the content of the interview accelerated a process of ex- change between FL and PM, citizens of City One and City Two respectively. What they created afterwards is compiled and catalogued as proof of the restless spirit of two people who struggle to understand their context and the complexity of a very banal procedure: destruction. This exchange is presented in this booklet as a collection of information, impressions and conclusions.
Trying to understand the spirit of their time, the significance of demolition and its aesthetics through their own universal narratives, their exchange is a reaction to time itself.
For this, their exchange will explore the implications of demolition in the aforementioned aspects:
Authorship / Identity / Context / Spatial Potentialities
THIS PROJECT WAS THE RESULT OF THE BERLAGE THEORY MASTERCLASS LED BY IPPOLITO PESTELLINI LAPARELLI AND JANNA BYSTRYKH OF AMO, 9 ACTS OF DEMOLITION.
PROJECT BY: PIERGIANNA MAZZOCCA AND FILIPPO LORENZI