.. might lead back to former sources, eventhough the routes taken show unknown connections. But in definition it always seems to be a helpful issue to look across the fields and ‘borders’… as Koolhaas (eventhough today he is Delirious No More about WANING SPACE: I __ NY) did when he discovered Delirious New York with the support of Dali’s PCMethod.
“..it makes the world of delirium pass onto the plane of reality” (Dali)
Amongst the theorists of the metropolis (architects and urbanists), Koolhaas was the one who provided us, at the end of the 70’s and in a delirious manner, with a new image of the metropolis. We are obviously referring to Delirious New York . What was the central thesis of this book?
Koolhaas drew an image of the metropolis that -because of but in spite of a more or less coherently developed planning- lived through dynamics, conflicts, powerful juxtapositions of cultural layers, life styles and forms and of a multiplicity of hypothesis and projects for the future.
In order to understand the city, one had to look at this complexity and this microphysics of powers from within. New York in particular was the example of an extraordinary historical, political, technological and artistic accumulation of various forms of urban planning. However, this was not enough, for one also had to recognise that the metropolis was stronger than the urban centre. Speculative interests and citizens’ resistances defeated and swept away both the prescriptions of power and the utopias of the opposition. The metropolis confused and mixed the terms of the urban discourse: starting from a certain urban intensity, the metropolis constituted new categories, it was a proliferating machine. The measure went beyond itself. What was needed was to provide a microphysical analysis of the metropolis -in this case one of New York- that could account for both the thousands of active singularities and the forms of repression and blockage that the power of the multitude met. Thus Koolhaas’ architecture grew amongst great plans of urban co-habitation that were then taken up, modified and mixed with other architectural form … Koolhaas’ architecture tells a great story, that of the destruction of western cities and their replacement by the hybrid metropolis. That for Koolhaas architectural development is classified in a manner functional to the different organising techniques of the building work is not relevant, though useful to understand. What is of interest here is the exact opposite: despite the industrial corporativasation of the agents of production, here we perceive how far the metropolis organises itself on continuous yet distorted layers, consistent with the Welfare paradigm yet hybrid. The metropolis is a common world, everyone’s product – Not general will but common aleatoriness.
… read more here