wtc memorial winner

World architecture... what's happening generally....

Postby space_invader » Fri Jan 09, 2004 11:47 pm

I have a post card of the lower manhattan skyline in what i think must be the thirties in New York or even the twenties, I'm not sure: it looks incredible: but the city now, without the twin towers, looks different. I think its the amount of glass used in skyscrapers since Mies and co, as opposed to the petrified canyon chic as personified by by the Gothic heights of the Woolworth Building or that massive cop shop around that part of New York.

Personally, I was a fan of the twin towers: their sheer monumentality was impressive and, well, there was two of them!

And well, my first experience of fast food was in a burger bar right opposite the WTC: I remember gorging on a megaburger, ketchup dripping on to the sidewalk, gazing up at those vertical strips and thinking -

WOW!
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Postby mike s » Fri Jan 09, 2004 11:59 pm

fast food is not usually a first experience people remember- so it must have been some burger. your comments and those of the others have been very interesting perhaps you should have entered. good night and happy eating
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Postby notjim » Sat Jan 10, 2004 1:44 am

have you ever seen the billie wilder film _lost weekend_, great film and as an added treat it has lots of views of the last 30s skyline, all these fabulous beaux-art towers that are buried in the streetscape now.

i lived in nyc for a while but i haven't been back since 9/11, it is hard to imagine; the towers were such a presence, i have no sense of direction so i would always navigate using them when i was downtown.

as for putting a war memorial in an army base, well it all depends on your attitude to war and on what you are commemerating. the whole situation in beruit is still so raw, they can live with each other, but they hate the israels and would happily fight them if they thought they had a chance, it isn't time for the memorial yet, big parts of beruit still look a lot like the memorial, pock marked concrete and wreckage. the memorial is angry and horrified, not sad, we are more familar with ww1 memorials where it is felt the loss of live was tragic and only given meaning by the glorious spirit with which it was sacrificed and the care with which the memory is preserved; those lies. there is no such feeling in beruit. another similar example is a memorial to another unfinshed war; the korean war memorial in seoul, it is in the middle of the _museum of large ordinance_ which glorifies the machinery of war. quite wierd.
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Postby space_invader » Sat Jan 10, 2004 2:55 pm

thanks for your thoughts notjim.
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Postby FIN » Mon Jan 12, 2004 2:42 pm

Originally posted by notjim

the glorious spirit with which it was sacrificed


hmmm! dunno about this...it was a gross miscalculation and waste of lives but i do understand ur viewpoint.
in seoul, i guess that as the country is still divided that it seemed appropriate to have it in a exhibit that reminds people of their stuggle against evil is still ongoing.
and i agree that having it in the military base is a sign that maybe the general population is not ready to be reminded of their hatred for each other. and possibly a reminder to the army of what can happen if they let things get out of control.
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Postby space_invader » Mon Jan 12, 2004 3:07 pm

placing a war memorial in a military base is like William Morris exhibiting a set of tar-soaked leathery lungs in the vestibule of its HQ.

I really don't get it.
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Postby FIN » Mon Jan 12, 2004 3:10 pm

lol.... it does seem a bit strange but maybe it's a memorial to all the lost equipment!!!! and how much money was spent on it!
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Postby notjim » Mon Jan 12, 2004 4:08 pm

FIN, the glorious spirit etc was supposed to paraphrase the message ww1 memorialist intended to communicate, not my own opinion of the fighting tommy or whatever. the point is, the ww1 memorialist seemed to agree that ww1 was a meaningless waste, but that , the people who died, did so gloriously and that, if nothing else, should be celebrate. The ww1 memorial celebrate those who died without celebrating the victory they won; the korean war memorial in contrast thanks those who died for what they won.
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Postby FIN » Mon Jan 12, 2004 4:19 pm

oh! right. i wasn't getting at u at all. but i was considering that it was a tribute to the victory rather than the lost souls.
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Postby alan d » Mon Jan 12, 2004 4:51 pm

This topic seems to be going off in a different direction , I guess from it's origins and finding the thread that draws all this together will make it more interesting.

So with this in mind, heroic communist "civic" sculpture. The stuff you find in China outside the peoples assembly for example and probably found in Russia, although I've never been there, before the walls came down, I've always found that amazing.

We just don't do it in the west?
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Postby FIN » Mon Jan 12, 2004 4:56 pm

as in statues of mao/stalin/saddam etc?
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Postby space_invader » Mon Jan 12, 2004 4:58 pm

Geroge Square in Glasgow is probably the closest we've got to all that heroic stuff.

but Alan, we don't do it cos we've not had a clean slate since 1066 I reckon.
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Postby alan d » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:02 pm

No not really that so much FIN , what I saw in China were compositional groups of heroically beautiful workers, in the main looking toward the sunrise whilst hoisting a flag.

Immediate, unequivocal, no nonsense message, excellently worked.

No contemplative reflective pools anywhere.
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Postby space_invader » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:07 pm

Geroge Square in Glasgow is probably the closest we've got to all that heroic stuff.

but Alan, we don't do it cos we've not had a clean slate since 1066 I reckon.
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Postby space_invader » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:08 pm

please excuse the double post.
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Postby alan d » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:22 pm

Can't even tell you who's all in George Square S.I, truthfully.

For a second I thought heroic sculpture was the art of choice for only totalitarian regimes at both polar ends, I wonder where else it occurs? and if the wtc memorial had been figurative instead of metaphoric would we have laughed?
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Postby FIN » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:37 pm

fair enough. good point. circumstances however are different in our countries. there ideals of the socialist state where everyone works for the good of the state and therefore people working together to raise the flag. if we were to do it possibly a beautiful crafted statue of the euro or the pound( depending on geography or political stances). we seem to rely on war to produce such iconic figures or events that merit making into a statue.
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Postby FIN » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:40 pm

probably would have called them gobshites!
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Postby alan d » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:43 pm

this is another puzzle, why has the term gobshite developed only in Eire? We don't use it in Scotland, at all?
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Postby Paul Clerkin » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:48 pm

ahhh because we have more of them, we needed a term....
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Postby what? » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:49 pm

dont really know how it developed, my theory would be it refers to someone who talks shit (gob=talking shite=shit)
on the monuments side of things i think the reason why dictatorships and totalitarian governments produce these statues is because they want to control every aspect of their citizens lives and thoughts. erecting a figurative monument proposes a specific idea of memorial or rememberance. this can be contrasted with the more abstract monuments, open to free thinking and interpretation that are becoming more popular in open democratic societies. thats my take on the difference anyway
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Postby alan d » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:58 pm

I think interpretation is the key word and getting the message over to what might be a largely under-educated populace without question.

So does this mean figurative sculpture is a "lower" art form ?
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Postby space_invader » Mon Jan 12, 2004 5:59 pm

Alan, there is actually a 'heroic' sculpture in Glasgow. Can't remember what it's for, but it's by the clyde, next to the bridge at the end of Jamaica Street.

It's of a woman lurching forward - I'm sure it has socialist connections.

Part of Page and Park's submission for the ill fated gallery of Architecture and Design in the old Post Office Building would have seen Sandy Stoddart reorganise George Square so that all the black statues were in a line along the southern end of the Square, with the Walter Scott monument moved to the western end, and the pedestrianisation of Ingram Street.

Could've been good.


I remember you wrote an article on the debacke surrounding the architure and design museum did you not? Was the first time I'd heard your name when I was a student, actually.

Then of course, there is Stoddart's desire to create the biggest sculpture in the whole wide

Woild

Ossian carved into a mountainscape near Torridon on theWEst Scottish Coast, I think.
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Postby what? » Mon Jan 12, 2004 6:14 pm

ill risk the inevitable wrath here and suggest that figurative sculpture is intellectually "lower" than abstract or conceptual sculpture (if created in todays contex). for the reasons that it is generally aimed at the lowest common denominator, and is earlier on the timeline of artistic development suggesting that this form of sculpture was more readily understandable by humans. i amnt ignorant of rennaisance sculpture. i am merely suggesting that the thirst for creativity seems to have outstripped what can be expressed by strictly using the human body as a subject.

heres an image of the mother of russia statue, shes a large lady at 85m tall
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Postby FIN » Mon Jan 12, 2004 6:27 pm

agree with whats! definition of gobshite and with paul..we have lots of them here that we needed to make up a word. :-)
yes i think it is to get a message over to the under-educated audience or maybe even everyone as educated people tend to let themselves be led easily as well. i would equate this to maybe the popular slogans that are catchy and don't need too much brain power to understand.
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