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emptiness, realness…

For architecture, emptiness implies that a building should not be slave to its program, twisting and turning to accommodate our every movement and wish – squirming to please, as it were – but rather should be formed according to innate principles of order, structure, shelter, the evolution of architecture itself – and accident. It should be found useful and beautiful, like a tree. The dumb and inexplicable features of old and/or vernacular buildings, otherwise so straightforwardly organized, are often precisely those that attract us to inhabit them. Offering opportunity rather than giving direction, they are indifferent to our designs on them. They were there before us, they are ‘wrong’ in a way that challenges us to possess them creatively: they seem realer if not ‘better’ than anything we could design from scratch, and that is why, increasingly, we like them.“

-Michael Benedikt, FOR AN ARCHITECTURE OF REALITY

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