Category Archives: Speculation

Vernacular Precedent?

When I first saw an image of De Rotterdam, by OMA, I knew I had seen something vaguely similar before somewhere; an older, more “anonymous” and “vernacular” precedent in a distant metropolis. I just couldn’t remember where, exactly. Then, lo and behold,

Vernacular Precedent?

When I first saw an image of De Rotterdam, by OMA, I knew I had seen something vaguely similar before somewhere; an older, more “anonymous” and “vernacular” precedent in a distant metropolis. I just couldn’t remember where, exactly. Then, lo and behold,

Scatological Cantilever?

Unlike so many contemporary cantilevers whose only purpose, seemingly, is to out-do other cantilevers in depth, height or width, the tiny cantilever poking out of the wall of this defunct factory in Vic, Catalonia, must surely have served a very precise function. But what? There

Scatological Cantilever?

Unlike so many contemporary cantilevers whose only purpose, seemingly, is to out-do other cantilevers in depth, height or width, the tiny cantilever poking out of the wall of this defunct factory in Vic, Catalonia, must surely have served a very precise function. But what? There

Architecture and Crime

A recent escape from a maximum-security prison in upstate New York, in which two convicted murderers cut through steel jail-cell walls to reach a mechanical system catwalk and a large drainage pipe leading to a manhole cover outside, brings to mind a 1988 text by Beatriz Colomina that

Architecture and Crime

A recent escape from a maximum-security prison in upstate New York, in which two convicted murderers cut through steel jail-cell walls to reach a mechanical system catwalk and a large drainage pipe leading to a manhole cover outside, brings to mind a 1988 text by Beatriz Colomina that

Pure Shit (II)

This building in the Catalan Pyrenees is a perfect example of the kind of “pure shit” that constitutes 98% of everything that is designed and built today. Yet another ordinary masonry construction topped with corrugated fiber cement board panels, the absolute cheapest roofing material on

Pure Shit (II)

This building in the Catalan Pyrenees is a perfect example of the kind of “pure shit” that constitutes 98% of everything that is designed and built today. Yet another ordinary masonry construction topped with corrugated fiber cement board panels, the absolute cheapest roofing material on

How to become a “public space” benefactor in 6 easy steps:

Pssst. Nouveau-riche and dying to go down in philanthropic history? Why not build a “public space” vanity project? It’s easy. Here’s how you do it: 1. Approach a star designer. They are usually found talking with curators at art gallery openings, next to the table with the wine

How to become a “public space” benefactor in 6 easy steps:

Pssst. Nouveau-riche and dying to go down in philanthropic history? Why not build a “public space” vanity project? It’s easy. Here’s how you do it: 1. Approach a star designer. They are usually found talking with curators at art gallery openings, next to the table with the wine

Morning Glory

It must surely be a signal from the cosmos. Yesterday, September 8th, at precisely 7:39 AM,  I woke up, opened the shutters, and was hit by a sunbeam passing through the Barceló Raval Hotel’s top floor corridor, several blocks away. I was instantly reminded of Stonehenge and

Morning Glory

It must surely be a signal from the cosmos. Yesterday, September 8th, at precisely 7:39 AM,  I woke up, opened the shutters, and was hit by a sunbeam passing through the Barceló Raval Hotel’s top floor corridor, several blocks away. I was instantly reminded of Stonehenge and

Media-TIC, another Sad Spectacle?

In an article I wrote a few years ago on Barcelona’s Media-TIC building, for Mark Magazine #25, I concluded my optimistic text by asking: “Will its ETFE pillow system work successfully and eventually make its way onto curtain-wall façades of office

Media-TIC, another Sad Spectacle?

In an article I wrote a few years ago on Barcelona’s Media-TIC building, for Mark Magazine #25, I concluded my optimistic text by asking: “Will its ETFE pillow system work successfully and eventually make its way onto curtain-wall façades of office