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Charles Jencks and Postmodernism - Essay Example

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Postmodernism is used as a label for a group of architectural styles that draw some of its references from modernism and some from the historical antecedents. …
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Charles Jencks and Postmodernism
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"Charles Jencks and Postmodernism"

Download file to see previous pages For Jencks, Postmodernism hybridizes modernism by reweaving the recent modern past and local culture in to a single entity. He defines Postmodernism as the reaction against the monolithic architectural principles of Modernism.

Postmodern architecture is a return to the sense of meaningful or referential function of architecture. It is a renewed awareness of the suppressed linguistic or connotative dimension in architecture and is expressed with contextualism and with a collaborative use of modern as well local or historical or referential elements in design. In spite of its opposition to modernism, Postmodernism has its roots in modernism which as we know rejected all old Victorian ideals of how art should be made, interpreted and what it should mean.

Architects tried to get away from the philosophical, ethical and formal dictation of the rationalism by a playful and ironical association with construction forms, architectural historical quotations and stylistically contamination and this eventually lead to Postmodernism. The movement largely has been a reaction to the orthodoxy, austerity, and formal absolutism of the International Style. Postmodernism describes the returning tendency of assembling organic narration and historical references in architectural designs by a process of assimilation and re-interpretation; the assimilation of the essence of historical works and reinterpreting the same in combination with the modernist style, thus creating a hybridized form of art. Hence Postmodern architecture is characterized by the incorporation of historical details in a hybrid rather than a pure style, by the use of decorative elements, by a more personal and exaggerated style, and by references to popular modes of building. This type of architecture where reference and ornament have returned to the facade, replacing the aggressively unornamented modern styles, has also been described as "neo-eclectic".
This Post modernity in architecture is generally thought to be heralded by the return of "wit, ornament and reference" to architecture in response to the formalism of the International Style of modernism. It is a rejection of strict rules set by the early modernists and seeks exuberance in the use of building techniques, angles, and stylistic references. Postmodern architecture is a return to the sense of meaningful or referential function of architecture, a renewed awareness of the suppressed linguistic or connotative dimension in architecture.
Jencks was on of the first to transfer the term 'Post Modern' from literary expression, where it was first used in 1975 to architecture. And in this manner he is the first to theorize postmodernism from the perspective of architecture. Jencks and some other post-modernists believe that post-modernism really began to emerge in the counter-culture of the 1960s. In the West it was a period of questioning and challenging rules and norms, and of embracing spiritual and artistic modes from other cultures that had previously been ignored. According to Jencks's earlier definition, postmodernism describes anything that was build after 1972, the year in which the Pruitt-Igoe project in St Louis for low-income housing was eventually destroyed with dynamite.

Jencks's Concept of Modernism and its Shortcomings
Jencks claims that modern architecture developed from the interests of large corporations on account of the progress in ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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