Posts Tagged ‘film’

The City and the City

Friday, August 13th, 2010

So, I’ve just finished reading¬†China Mi√©ville’s novel The city and the city – the first novel I’ve actually made it¬†through¬†in quite some time.

Courtesy of Wikipedia, here is the low-down on the dual cities that are the main character/s of the book:

The City & The City takes place in the cities of BesŇļel and Ul Qoma. These two cities actually occupy much of the same geographical space, but via the volition of their citizens (and the threat of the secret power known as Breach), they are perceived as two different cities. A denizen of one city must dutifully ‘unsee’ (that is, ignore, or fade into the background) the denizens, buildings, and events taking place in the other city ‚ÄĒ even if they are an inch away. This separation is emphasized by the style of clothing, architecture, gait, and the way denizens of each city generally carry themselves. Residents of the cities are taught from childhood to recognise things belonging to the other city without actually¬†seeing them. Ignoring the separation, even by accident, is called “breaching” – a terrible crime by the citizens of the two cities, worse than murder. (more…)

Video of the Week XII: Poundbury: Building Communities

Friday, April 24th, 2009

Here is a companion piece to the Prince Charles post of a couple of weeks ago (I hope it is clear by now that my Zaha comments were made with tongue embedded firmly in cheek…). Here, for your viewing pleasure (or displeasure perhaps?), is a very short clip propounding the virtues of Poundbury:

What do you make of it? Would you live there? (more…)

Video of the Week XI: Libidinal Gehry confronts asexual Eisner

Thursday, April 16th, 2009

I‚Äôd like to say the title says it all, but the mental image is just too disturbing – and there isn‚Äôt really a whole lot of confronting going on. What we are exposed to here (if I can use that expression to open a discussion of sexuality), is an excellent piece of post-design rationalization from Gehry, and a rambling Eisner whose point, if we extrapolate somewhat, would seem to suggest that Gehry‚Äôs buildings could never be as universally adored in the same way as Mickey Mouse ‚Äď well‚Ķ duh!

And I’m not sure exactly what the person who posted this clip on youtube was really trying to say by describing the video in the following manner:

Michael Eisner and Frank Gehry talking about the way their sexuality expresses itself in their work. In a word, Michael Eisner is to Mickey Mouse as Frank Gehry is to Marilyn Monroe.

I’m assuming it has nothing to do with Frank singing happy birthday to Obama…

Anyway, having watched this, the burning question I had was ‚Äď have we really reached the point in our culture when this conversation passes as a) a serious discussion on the state of contemporary art and culture, or b) entertainment? You decide‚Ķ.


Video of the Week XI: Architecture & energy 1

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

Amid all of the hooha surrounding our Supreme Court – symbols of power,¬†propaganda, and hair loss –¬†we should take time out to step back and really consider the dome issue in a more holistic way. You see, as this remarkable little film sets out, there really are¬†supernatural¬†consequences of building domes, which have no doubt been taken into account by the architects of our esteemed Supreme Court (who are obviously well up on their freemasonry)… The result being,¬†of course,¬†to hide the dome away in the interior so as not to expose bystanders to the energy drawn therein.

The energy will, of course, be invoked by the highest powers of judiciary in this country when passing judgment and handing down sentence, and will no doubt contribute to the building’s green star rating…

You may want to look away if notions of anti-christ, other dimensions, ley lines (must check Wellington’s position wrt this), or the new world order offend thine eyes…



Video of the Week VII: The Architects Sketch

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009

The Architect Sketch (by John Cleese and Graham Chapman)

If some of you found that last week’s video resonated all to familiarly, then try this one on for size. It is a pretty famous Monty Python sketch, so there is a good chance that you’ll have seen it before, but it is definitely worth another look…¬†

Cast: Mr Tid: Graham Chapman; Mr Wiggin: John Cleese; City Gent One: Michael Palin; Client 2: Terry Jones; Mr Wymer: Eric Idle


You’ll have to admit that the residential block proposed by the first architect does address the problem of housing shortage in a rather…, um…, creative manner…


Documentary Film Festival (Wellington)

Sunday, March 1st, 2009

The Wellington season of the DOCNZ 2009 Documentary Film Festival is on sooon! This year the films are screening at Hoyts Regent on Manners.

Festival includes world premiere of ‘Architect of Dreams‘ about Ian Athfield.

New Zealand 2008 / 52min, Director Geoffrey Cawthorn. Producer Richard Riddiford.

Video of the Week VI: smack the pony – architects

Tuesday, February 24th, 2009

Smack the Pony, according to Wikipedia,¬†was a¬†British¬†sketch comedy¬†show that ran from 1999 until 2003 on¬†Channel 4 (some of you out there might have seen them?). Weirdly, its title was intended to sound like a¬†euphemism¬†for female¬†masturbation – something I won’t tag this post with in case it gets too popular amongst a demographic that we are just not seeking here…

Anyways – here’s an amusing sketch that reveals what really goes on in those design concept meetings. The expressions of a bemused Jo (the engineer) are classic…