Attention Audio Journal For Architecture public
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Attention is an audio journal for architectural culture that uses the medium of sound and spoken word to capture a dimension of architecture otherwise lost in print. By precluding visual media, Attention strikes a distance between the distraction economy of much online media, creating an intimate and reflective space for the in-depth development of ideas and issues. Through interviews, roundtable debates, oral histories, field recordings, the exploration of archival recordings, experimental ...
 
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show series
 
This piece asks the question: “what is theory?” It begins by attempting to define “theory” as a term or as a concept, a task that involves addressing ideas of abstraction, generalization, science, discourse, language and rhetoric, as well as the persistent oppositions between theory and practice, theory and history, theory as engaged and instrument…
 
This piece addresses the question “how has architectural theory changed over time?” In particular, it explores the longue durée of two millennia of architectural writings in the west. In doing so the piece addresses the historicality of architectural theory in the western tradition. It asks what the big paradigm changes are that architectural theor…
 
This piece asks “is architectural theory Western or can it be global?” This means asking: is theory universal or is it geographically particular? Is theory inherently linked to Western notions of reason, philosophy, metaphysics, historical thought, and critique? And what is the relationship of theory to other modes of thought such as rhetoric, myth…
 
This piece asks “how do you teach architectural theory?” We ask what are the ways that each person teaches architectural theory in their specific classroom and in their specific school? How do they approach this as a pedagogical challenge? Do they approach architectural theory as something to survey or to explicate (chronologically, thematically, o…
 
This piece asks “what are architectural theory classes for?” What is the purpose of the architectural theory class in relation to architectural design in the curriculum? What is the purpose of the architectural theory class in relation to the formation of the student—their ethical awareness, citizenship, the engendering of their “critical thinking,…
 
This piece asks “is architectural theory dead?” This might seem a strange question to ask given the lengthy discussion throughout the issue. Yet, at the turn of the millennium, a new generation of architectural theorists declared the “end of theory.” Nearly two decades on, a different generation addresses this question again, and asks why there was…
 
What is music like without the sound of a space? Historian Emily Thompson discusses the aesthetics, technology and politics of spatial absence at the dawn of the recording era while John and Susan Edwards Harvith explain how musicians coped with, adapted to and sometimes thrived in the acoustically dead confines of the recording studio.…
 
In the 1950s, classical record producers were fixated on realism, aspiring to put listeners in the ‘best seat of an acoustically perfect hall.’ Not so for John Culshaw, however, a maverick producer who used new stereophonic technology to produce operas that were more dramatic, more spatially immersive and (so he claimed) more faithful to a composer…
 
The pianist Glenn Gould was dogmatic about his recording setup, placing the microphone as close as possible to his piano to exclude the sound of the surrounding room. That is, until he encountered the music of Alexander Scriabin—Gould felt that no one acoustic could do justice to Scriabin’s mystical musical language, and devised a system of ‘sound …
 
One day, while practicing the prelude to Bach’s Cello Suite #1, Yasuaki Shimizu accidentally ran his tenor saxophone through a reverb machine. The sound so moved him that he embarked on an odyssey to record each of the six Cello Suites in a different acoustical environment. In this piece, Shimizu takes us into a warehouse, a stone quarry, a mine, a…
 
Bad acoustics inspired Daniel Neumann to become a composer and sound artist. After struggling to tame echoes, flutter and too much reverberation as a sound engineer at a nightclub in Leipzig, Daniel embraced these and other acoustical peculiarities and made them the focus of his work. In this piece, Neumann talks about how he uses sound to raise aw…
 
This piece addresses the concept and practice of composition in architectural design. Formerly dominant in Beaux-Arts education and somewhat taboo in functionalist modern architecture, composition was a key feature of postmodern architectural discourse and has returned to prominence in recent years in the work of many young architects.…
 
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