Search This Blog

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Peter Eisenman HOUSE VI - Secrets of a Master Architect.

House VI, or the Frank Residence, is a significant building designed by Peter Eisenman, completed in 1975. His second built work, the getaway house, located on Great Hollow Road near Bird's Eye Brook in Cornwall, Connecticut (across from Mohawk Mountain Ski Area) has become famous for both its revolutionary definition of a house as much as for the physical problems of design and difficulty of use. At the time of construction, the architect was known almost exclusively as a theorist and "paper architect," promulgating a highly formalist approach to architecture he calls "postfunctionalism." Rather than form following function or an aesthetic design, the design emerged from a conceptual process, and remains pinned to that conceptual framework.
Unfortunately, Eisenman's limited construction experience meant that the entire building was poorly detailed. The tiny building took 3 years to build, went completely over budget, and finally had to be reconstructed in 1987, leaving only the basic structure original. The Franks, in Peter Eisenman's House VI: The Client's Response, claim that they nonetheless love living in such a poetic structure, which they inhabit with their children. Also on the property is a barn for guests and supplies that do not fit in the kitchen.
-Eisenman, Peter (1987). Houses of Cards. New York: Oxford University Press. 

When a house is not a home - Peter Eisenman brought architecture to the highest level by taking it out of the mundane and into the philisophical.  It started with House VI and was the catalyst to a discourse that would last 3 decades culminating with Literary Theory and Deconstructivism in Literature with his collaboration of France's greatest living mind Jacques Derridan. Derridian theory was that of analytical post modern allegory - creating stories of interconnectedness and setting rational explanations to seemingly chaotic occurances.  Derrida wrote a fabulous essay on Vangogh's peasant shoes and connected their relevance to his own world.  These interconnected paradigm shifts are what Eisenman latched onto with his collaboration in Parc De Lavilette by Bernard Tschumi - dean of Columbia University at the time. Peter Eisenman was one of the few architect professors who actually realized these fantastical theoretical projects on numerous occasions. - Ecomanta