Peter Eisenman, Carnegie Mellon Institute conceptual model

Peter Eisenman co-opted the syntactic arguments of structuralism, perhaps without even fully understanding their mathematical roots. Eisenman’s approach is exactly a pseudocode approach — a portable narrative of operational sequence. Nevertheless his projects began to take a profoundly mathematical turn, in approach if not in content, by interrogating the rules of form generation themselves. Several of Eisenman’s early projects draw on the notional perceptual distortion of the hypercube, if not the exact mathematical mode. His project for the Carnegie Mellon Institute is a structural constellation of eight rhapsodically permuted hypercubic sections, alternately opaque and wireframe, a static composition that nevertheless evokes the virtual volumes of Moholy-Nagy. This progression of n-dimensional hypercubes evoke the 1923 Maison Particuliare of Van Does burg. Here we see Robin Evans’ Architectural Association thesis project attested to this midcentury fascination with self-organization, the ultimate declaration of architectural anonymity.

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