Archiv der Kategorie 'C. Alexander'

Christopher Alexander

Notes on the Synthesis of Form. Cambridge 1964
70 (…) the selfconscious individual’s grasp of problems is constantly misled. His concepts and categories, besides being arbitrary and unsuitable, are self-perpetuating. Under the influence of concepts, he not only does things from a biased point of view, but sees them biasedly as well. The concepts control his perception of fit and misfit – until in the end he sees nothing but deviations from his conceptual dogmas, and loses not only the urge but even the mental opportunity to frame his problems more appropriately.

73 We wish to design clearly conceived forms which are well adapted to some given context. (…) For this to be feasible, the adaptation must take place independently within independent subsystems of variables.

75 The data alone are not enough to define a hypothesis; the construction of hypotheses demands the further introduction of principles like simplicity (…), non-arbitrariness, and clear organization. The construction of form, too, requires these principles. There is at present no prospect of introducing these principles mechanically, either into science or into design. Again, they require invention.

75 If theory cannot be expected to invent form, how is it likely to be useful to a designer?

77 In the unselfconscious process there is no possibility of misconstruing the situation: nobody makes a picture of the context, so the picture cannot be wrong. But the selfconscious designer works entirely from the picture in his mind, and this picture is almost always wrong. The way to improve this is to make a further abstract picture of our first picture of the problem, which eradicates its bias and retains only its abstract structural features; this second picture may then be examined according to precisely defined operations, in a way not subject to the bias of language and experience.

81 (…) The fact that the set of misfits has a structure, or (…) field. We must now explore the structure of this field.

83 (…) For every problem there is one decomposition which is especially proper to it, and (…) this is usually different from the one in the designer’s head. For this reason we shall refer to this special decomposition as the program for the problem (…). (…) This program is a reorganization of the way the designer thinks about the problem.

[ 208 The word „program“ has ocurred a great deal in the recent literature on the psychology of problem solving – the implication throughout being that man’s natural way of solving complex problems is to make them easier for himself by means of heuristics which lead him to a solution stepwise. ]

84 Finding the right design program for a given problem is the first phase of the design process. It is (…) the analytical phase of the process. This first phase of the process must of course be followed by the synthetic phase, in which a form is derived from the program. We shall call this synthetic phase the realization of the program.

[ 209 Louis I. Kahn has used [ the word „realization“ ] extensively, and often with a rather wider meaning. ]

84 (…) These notes are given principally to the analytical phase of the process, and to the invention of programs which can make the synthesis of form a reasonable task (…).

84 The realization is made by making small diagrams and putting them together as the program directs, to get more and more complex diagrams. To achieve this we must learn to match each set of requirements in the program with a corresponding diagram.

90 The search for the realization through constructive diagrams is an effort to understand the required form so fully that there is no longer a rift between its functional specification and the shape it takes.

93 There are [ some simpler diagrams which the designer can construct ] and the program tells us how to find them.

93 If we build up compound diagrams from these simplest diagrams according to the program’s structure, and build up further compound diagrams from these in turn, we get a tree of diagrams. (…) We call it the realization of the program.

Rem Koolhaas. Delirious New York. New York

81 Da jedes der so entstehenden neuen Grundstücke sein eigenes programmatisches Schicksal finden muss – ohne Einflussnahme des Architekten –, ist der Wolkenkratzer das Instrument eines neuen Urbanismus des Unfassbaren. Trotz seiner physischen Stabilität ist der Wolkenkratzer der metropolitane Destabilisator schlechthin: Er verspricht unausgesetzte, programmatische Instabilität.

209 Das Rockefeller Center ist die ausgereifteste Demonstration der unausgesprochenen Theorie des Manhattanismus, wonach die unterschiedlichsten Programme gleichzeitig auf ein und demselben Grundstück existieren können, lediglich verbunden über einige gemeinsame Einrichtungen wie Aufzüge, Versorgungsschächte, Pfeiler und äußere Hüllen.