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Keywords: Architecture
Design Track
Erwin John Soriano Viray
Issue Date: 4-Feb-2010
Citation: CHUA CO SENG (2010-02-04T09:37:36Z). ARCHITECTURE AS PHOTOGRAPHY AS ARCHITECTURE. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: A single photograph sometimes speaks more than a thousand words and a single building can sometimes singularly embodyan Architectural epoch. Very often, the perceived objectivity of the “ordinary/common” Photographic Image and the “minimal/mundane” works of Architecture are none other thanin-discreet and careful re-constructions of the physical world. Contemporary Architecture is represented by photography more than other mediums because its realism surpasses the plan, models, and perspective drawings. The 1932 “Modern Architecture-International Style” exhibition at MOMA(Museum of Modern Art) in New York, epitomizes the importance of the photographic imageby only exhibiting “models, photographs and the occasional plan” but alsoin the subsequent publication of the accompanying book / cataloguewere to give that Architectural Epoch, its name and definition mainly through its images of buildings. In the contemporary world today, proliferated with imagery means that Architecture could never be perceived as aphysical object on its own anymore. Its success in part depends on the ability of the photographer to bring out the intentions of the Architect or the Architecture through its images to be propagated. The photographer himself becomes an architect too, filtering through his lenses; he makes his personal and reflective intrusions into the domains of the architect, and architecture thereby diminishing or enriching the spatial experiences.Architectural Photography is therefore neither a representational image nor a parody, for far beyond its role as a documenter, a signifier can become the signified. Understanding photography’s role beyond pure documentation, the photo book of (Walter Niedermayr/Kazuyo Sejima + Ryue Nishizawa / SANAA) is used as a framework for viewing SANAA’s Architecture through the lenses of Walter Niedermayr’s photographs and back into Architecture again. The question is not so much the concern with the relationship between Architecture and Photography or its authenticity of faithful reproduction as with if: Photography can truly depict the intentions of the architect or architecture beyond the mimetic.
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