Undergraduate Architecture Book Talk Lecture: Todd Gannon
Gathering twenty essays written over twenty years, Figments of the Architectural Imagination explores the frontiers of speculative architectural design, theory, and pedagogy through incisive treatments of some of the most important projects, practices, and polemics at work making contemporary architecture contemporary.
Whether addressing the impact of digital technology, the design of an effective hotel, the emergence of the Los Angeles vanguard, or the proper execution of a thesis project, these texts combine frontline reportage, archival scholarship, trenchant prose, and impressive critical acumen to cut through the cacophony of recent architectural discourse with uncommon clarity, intelligence, rigor, and wit.
Detailed analyses shed new light on groundbreaking practices including UN Studio, Bernard Tschumi, Diller + Scofidio, and Archigram and provide important introductions to a younger generation of innovative architects including Oyler Wu Collaborative, Hirsuta, and PATTERNS. Other texts examine issues ranging from the environmental politics of the American desert to the aesthetic politics of US federal buildings to the disciplinary impact of object-oriented philosophy to the ideological stakes of architectural education. Studies written in collaboration with notable figures in literary criticism, philosophy, and architecture examine the significance of architecture’s interdisciplinary entanglements with neighboring fields of cultural projection.
Taken together, these essays provide essential orientation for practitioners, academics, students, and afficionados hoping to understand how contemporary architecture came to be where it is and to speculate on where it might go next.
Todd Gannon is professor of architecture at the Knowlton School at The Ohio State University. His books include Reyner Banham and the Paradoxes of High Tech, The Light Construction Reader, Et in Suburbia Ego: José Oubrerie’s Miller House, *A Confederacy of Heretics (with Ewan Branda), and monographs on the work of Morphosis, Bernard Tschumi, UN Studio, Steven Holl, Mack Scogin Merrill Elam Architects, Peter Eisenman, and Eric Owen Moss.