Reading 8 – Rudolph

Rudolph’s six determinants of architectural form are based in a normalcy consistent with the late modern fashion where Modernism has seen the crest of wave, following World War 2, and is entrenched in a struggle for difference and variation. Rudolph is on the edge of relying on past typologies to qualify great architecture, while almost falling into a call for new architectural expressions. He embraces a new appreciation for site and environment in his first and third determinants, but this is something that had long been in the works, particularly since the meeting of CIAM in the 1930’s. Rudolph’s second determinant is again a reiteration of high modern ideology where function plays an integral role in communicating and defining architectural form. But going back to the third determinant, Rudolph makes a naive proclamation; he pulls back from the edge and remains in stout defense of Modernism. Rudolph writes, “If adaptation, enlargement, and enrichment of basic principles of 20th century architecture were carried out, related always to the mainstream of architecture and the particular region, the world would again be able to create magnificent cities.” Only later, in the fifth determinant, does Rudolph again creep close to calling for a post modern architecture when he identifies “the peculiar psychological demands of the space.” This is just touching on a foresight towards post modernism, but Rudolph readily admits later that so much must be learned anew. Overall, the piece serves as an interesting window to a time of flux, where the modern movement had finally seen its limits and there was a growing need for a new architectural typology.

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About jasonsedar

My final year of architecture school at the University of Calgary!
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