LEGO® Formalism in Architecture

In Roy T. Cook & Sondra Bacharach (eds.), Lego and Philosophy: Constructing Reality Brick by Brick. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishers. pp. 27-37 (2017)
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Abstract

LEGO tells about not just LEGO architecture but architecture generally: its objects, its aesthetic properties, and how people judge them. To illustrate how thinking about LEGO can help people with such matters, this chapter considers some scenarios. These scenarios illustrate two very different ways of thinking about architecture. On the one hand, people might think architectural objects (more commonly, "works of architecture"), like buildings, bridges, and aqueducts, have forms that stand on their own, and which thereby do not depend on historical, environmental, or any other contexts. On the other hand, they might think that architectural objects are best understood (maybe only understood) if they have one or more kinds of contextual information. From a different angle, some might see formalism as a better fit with original LEGO world design than with real‐world architectural design. Proponents of formalism take note of what makes architectural objects distinctive.

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Saul Fisher
Mercy University

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