The Appearance of Modern Architecture: Emil Kaufmann



Lecture date: 2004-01-20

How can we specify the characteristics of modern architecture? This question has particular force in relation to the growing interest in organicism within architectural practice, a movement that seems to recall certain baroque motifs rather than ostensibly modern ones.

To attempt an answer Andrew Benjamin’s lecture series will look at three distinct areas: the writings of Emil Kaufmann for whom there is a distinct break between the baroque and the postbaroque.

Colin Rowe‘s analysis of the relationship between the classical and the modern, according to which the pretensions of the modern are undone by the retention of ideal forms; and the use of the baroque in order to stage the concerns of the modern – this position finds its most emphatic expression in the philosophical writings of Gilles Deleuze and their use by contemporary theorists.

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