Hugh Pearman on one of my favourite firms, Caruso St.John:

A sample of lace will be scanned, turned into a 3D computer model, and moulded into the pigmented precast concrete panels forming the elevations of the centre. “With this technology,” observes Caruso, “you can do very intricate ornament again.” Sullivan and Wright live on. As does Berlage – his Holland House, right behind Foster’s Gherkin in the City of London is “a constant reference”. Caruso St. John regard this kind of thing as real ornament. For them, it is cheating to muck around with algorithms and mapping programs to generate façade details, as some modish architects do. “Why go to that kind of incredible contrivance to get an articulation which in the end is always very reduced?” ponders Caruso.

Synopsis from the ICA Philadelphia exhibition showing the work of one of my other favourite firms, UN Studio:

The “Holiday Home” is an experiential installation exploring and quantifying areas in which the holiday home departs from modern design conventions. The orthogonal surfaces of the archetypal house are extruded and skewed creating the sculptural armature within which the dichotomies of home and holiday home are played out. The new architectural shape emulates escapism, the expectation of a holiday as removed from the everyday experiential routine. The interplay of what is real and what is virtual transpires on a number of levels touching on ideas of collective memory and phenomenological perceptions.

Perhaps it’s time for me to choose which side of the fence I sit on.

Related entries: Walsall Art gallery (with embedded link to yet another entry)