After being introduced, Robert Mangurian presents a brief allegorical performance, in which he examines some cardboard, wood and metal architectural junk displayed next to the podium, eventually sweeping it offstage with a big broom. He proposes to discuss the inherently architectural, illustrating it with his own work and work by others. He also presents personal stories illuminating the relationship between art and architecture.
Mangurian argues that architecture is watered down by critique and publications. He introduces three concepts that changed architectural practice (1.) industrialized production, (2.) industrialized communication, (3) computing. These interests move architecture away from several thousand years of techniques of making, simple beauty fulfilling simple needs. Mangurian states he tries to express basic architectural values instead of looking for complicated architectural associations.
Mangurian introduces the three most important moments of a person using space: (1) the desire to locate one’s self, (2) the desire to orient one’s self toward people, (3) the desire to use the space. Mangurian strives to relate the body and self to formal organization. He talks about his strategy of blurring adjacencies by exploiting threshold conditions. Instead of spaces that hide, he tries to create spaces that pull the visitor in.
Mangurian discusses buildings and objects that exemplify clarity in making and organization. He stresses the cultural associations of permanence that can be created by production technique. He also talks about apertures, and the responsibility of the architect to handle holes in a facade.
Citing Michelangelo’s Laurentian Library as an example, Mangurian discusses architecture as a coherent amalgamation of individual sculptures. He describes classical architecture as a search for elements that are inherently architectural.
Mangurian discusses more a school project and city hall project as they relate to issues of form, organization, materials and light. He discusses the South Side Settlement Community Center in Columbus, Ohio, in terms of alignment, textures, and geometry. This video ends abruptly, but continues in Part Two.