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Critical Review C - Essay Example

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See Figure 1 for the glass house. In “A Home is Not a House,” Reyner Banham talks about the two fundamental approaches to controlling…
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Critical Review C
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"Critical Review C"

Download file to see previous pages would have agreed that Johnson controlled the environment efficiently through his description of what makes a house a house and avoiding too much control of the outside environment, as he discussed in the article, “The Jacobs House.”
Banham is right to argue that the glass house is not a controlled environment, but an un-house, but Wright would have stressed that Johnson controlled the environment to some extent when he made a house that serves as a house without rejecting the outside environment’s presence altogether. The glass house is an un-house because it has two basic elements, “a heated brick floor slab and standing unit which is a chimney/fireplace on one side and a bathroom on the other” (Banham 79). The house becomes a “service core set” (Banham 79). Banham means to say that this an un-house because it defies the traditional need for a visual enclosure and other gadgetries. The emphasis is not on control, but on living outside the European model of a monumental structure (Banham 79). Wright would note, nevertheless, that Johnson did control the house in terms of functionality and did not control it through its openness. The glass house is simple and cost-efficient in its design and remarkable for its openness. Wright would appreciate that nonexistence of windows, and that the glass walls are the windows. Wright says that: “The way windows are used is naturally the most useful resource to achieve the new characteristic sense of space” (262). Indeed, the glass house looks out to the space, which Banham calls the “Great Out There” (79). The effect is the absence of division between the inside and the outside. The un-houseness of the glass house removes many obstacles that separate it from its natural environment. The irony of the controlled environment is having less control of the visible space through the nearly seamless interaction between the outside space and the inside space.
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