Some architecture students I recently met had never heard of Peter Zumthor (!). I offer a photoset of the Kolumba Museum in Cologne as a reminder.
Charalampos Politakis, a Doctoral student at the Manchester School of Architecture (supervisor Eamonn Canniffe) is currently researching the philosophy of anthropomorphic architecture. Here are some images and text from his Masters project which he completed at the University of Salford in 2009.
From animism to the observation of nature, man has always turned his eyes to nature in order to explore it, study it, admire it, and deify the inexplicable. This relation between nature and man this ‘communication’ was an influence for mankind to create myths, works of art and architectural structures.
The ‘Emerging Face’ project is an artistic and architectural concept that finds its influences in Greek mythology, the anthropomorphic landscape, and the anthropomorphic structure of architecture in general. Anthropomorphic landscapes and how the human body and its parts are identifiable in nature, such as in mountains, has been a field of interests from an artistic and and architectural point of view, as well as the relation of the human body and the exterior form of architectural structures.
The basic concept for this project was the creation, at this initial stage of development, of a 3D virtual installation based on the shape of human face. The face appears not only as a 3D colossal sculpture but also as a 3D architectural structure; a building with the shape of a face in a supine position. The user navigates the installation and the 3D environment with the use of the game engine UnrealTournament 2003. The design of the 3D structure, its environment and installation, is a first step towards this concept being presented for a future development in the creation of a building based on the form of the human face.
The Politics of the Piazza has been awarded an Outstanding Academic Title 2009 by Choice the leading source for library-relevant book reviews in the United States. In his review David H. Sachs of Kansas State University describes The Politics of the Piazza in the following terms.
The book features an introduction and 14 historically ordered chapters arranged into four sections. Canniffe discusses the social, political, and economic conditions surrounding some of the most important public urban spaces of each historical era, and explains how these forces influenced the formation and evolution of each piazza. The book is thoroughly researched, appropriately referenced, precisely written, highly reliable, and genuinely insightful.