Matron, Ruin and New Mineral: A Thesis of Iconic Materiality
Amare, Fekade Selassie
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This thesis is an academic exercise set out to understand the secrets of Architecture. It is a compilation of a series of gestures made on behalf of Architecture. These gestures confront the materiality of Architecture to reveal the imprints beyond what makes the material exist according to the law of its nature, the imprints that reveal the material as an imprint for the human desire, the human will, and the human wish, for the material as a tool of representation and interpretation, thus the human thoughts, the human purpose and the human work. Explained in terms of space or environment, in terms of form or function, Architecture is never quite fully and satisfactorily understood. These terms reveal their anxiety about the mundane and the prosaic in the material constituents of Architecture. They tend to inadvertently distance themselves from the material seeking to appeal to the conceptual. As much significance as the conceptual and the intangible contribute to the principles of Architecture, this thesis revels in the tactile, the vivid, in what is all together sense perceptible, the real, the present. As much as it regards the secrets that reside in the divine and in the spiritual, it is eager to find them embodied in its material reality. Truth, poetry, beauty, all things conceptual, that reside in abstract immaterial form beyond reach in the upper ethers, are afforded by Architecture to exist within a corpus. Without the material imagination, one is prone to participating in the exercise of Architecture, with undue weight given to its form, its shape, its geometry, to how readily it will serve a functional need, a need that seems to reduce life around it to that specific act, overlooking what will eventually reside alongside us in matter. Without the material imagination, one is prone to readily accepting what modern technology or modern alchemy can afford this exercise of Architecture thereby readily adapting techniques and systems without careful thought. Without the material imagination, one is prone to overlooking the prima materia1 and the primordial architectural gestures, and thereby unduly and unwisely willing the material to conform to the conceptual. Without the material imagination, one is prone to overlooking what is in the nature of a material and thereby missing what its inherent beauty informs us. Along with trying to understand the iconic elements of Architecture, this thesis is also an investigation in its materiality. It is an exercise in trying to understand what confronting the materiality of an artifice reveals. It is an attempt to define architecture by man's endeavour to understand the creature, to understand the material presence, to unravel the mysteries of the material constitution and organization.
- Masters Theses