Modern civilization’s will to abstract has longed for a complete deletion of Mother-Earth: the Men of the Earth have been unrooted and converted to labor force by temporal abstraction. Modern architecture has been obvious parallel to this Modernity: deporting the chthonic from city, rationalist architecture also has converted architectural places to spaces. They have removed placeness from pre-modernist architecture and buried these excremental places under tabula rasa; placeness have not been able to be expelled, only suppressed. On tabula rasa, they have started to construct a radiant city of new spirit (ville radieuse de l’esprit nouveau) with transparent spatiality; the city has become a spatial body of architectural and urban spaces.

As modernist city has been totally filled with placeless spatality, it has been highly probable that their urban architecture has come down with void emptiness: Minimalist and de-constructivist architectures have been major symptoms of disease “empty space”. Minimalist has made rational space sacred and holy: spatial aura has made this void-follower aesthetic poor. De-constructivist made rational space pedantic and highly visual: oculacentric space has made this theoretical experimentalist perverse exhibitionist. The body of urban architecture of today is like “Organs without Bodies”: only with a head imbued with space and an eye that is seeing only transparent space.

Vis-a-vis this drab reality, erotically anthropomorphized architecture intervene in urban architecture of spatiality. Erotic architecture demands a reconstruction of lost parts of body: first of all, the foot that is mostly closed to placeness. The “Foot-Place” is returned through an introduction of corporeality to urban space. Instead of the new spirit (l’esprit nouveau), a renewed body (le corps renouvelé) is essential for the return of place. (Returned place does not try to make city saturated with placeness in counterpoint to the ascendancy of space on the city. Place want to coexist with space because place is unifying by nature, but space is incompatible owing to its abstract nature.) Architectural corporeality shuttles between urban spatiality and placeness; in case that one becomes a taboo subject to the other (For example, a fetish use of metropolis by urban architecture, an urban spatiality’s encounter with architectural bodiliness at urban clearing, etc.) The shuttling becomes an architectural transgression against urban normality: architectural corporeality becomes erotic architecture by this kind of transgression – The “sexual” is psychological and also physical (internal and also external); two modalities are united but not fused. The “erotic” melts, however, parts of two modalities and fuses them temporarily, but not permanently.

Erotic corporeality in architecture transgresses alternatingly between urban space and place. Erotic architecture is a project against projects of spatiality. (A body without a head)

 

Erotic architecture is Antispace.

© 2023 by Won Chul KIM