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The Post Human Architectural Body
Visible Hope for the Invisible Re-birth
This manifesto is a verbal articulation of the visionary theory of how the human body, architecture, and creativity define and sustain one another: It’s an analysis of this revolutionary work by artists and architects who want to demonstrate the inter-connectedness of innovative architectural design, the poetic process, and their philosophical inquiry. It’s the relationship between architecture and the human body. It’s the development of the analogy of the human body and its extrapolation. By engaging with the post human we are building on the fundamental step based on architecture and theory, we are creating this analogy between the human body and the architectural organism.
Some may ask “Why is the human body so important as a reference and a standard for architecture?” Because the human body it is meant to be a creation coming out of imitation of God. The perfect proportions and dimensions should be the reflection of God’s perfectionism. Perfection of creation, perfection of nature. Humans aim is to become such a creator as good, as perfect, as God. We might no longer refer to god when it comes to the human body, and at the same time the architectural body itself, but we still refer to nature, because apparently humans cannot create something from scratch, so we use nature, as we still believe that there is lot to learn from naturel. To understand the mechanics of nature, how flowers, bodies, animals work. Nature is still there for us as a big standard for us to imitate to simulate, to learn from, always through scientific discovery. Even though the final aim as human beings is to overcome nature, we always base what we do or learn upon nature.
We start from this analogy, from the perfection of the body as an organism and therefore the perfection of architecture as a reflection of this relationship to discuss how this relationship is disrupted. In the first place because of the body is disrupted through something happening, in this case through technology’s misuse and abuse. What it implied in this project is that in first place the product from now on is not good. Although the idea was that technology was supposed to provide a product that’s perfect, now we come to see that it’s not. We deconstructed the idea of progress to see what is wrong with this progress. How progress is affecting back the perfection of the body or is affecting back this analogy of the body and architecture?
The “Post human” is about this analysis. Deconstructing the idea of dominating the world through the idea of endless linear progression towards the future, because it’s already reversing upon itself. Putting into question even the very basics in architecture which is the analogy of the body. The building is supposed to be a perfect integration of circulation and function. If we are not perfect then why should we build perfect buildings, perfect worlds, for what? For perfect human beings that DO NOT exists? Maybe we need an imperfect world to accommodate the imperfection of what we becoming to be. These are the philosophical implications discussed, researched and analyzed within this thesis project. A proof that architecture is not just a precipitate of applications taken from another field, but an intellectual discipline investigating the very essence of human beings. Who we are, what we will become.
Thehistory of architecturetraces the changes inarchitecturethrough various traditions, regions, overarching stylistic trends, and dates. Periods and styles flow together, sometimes merging contradictory ideas, sometimes inventing new approaches, and often re-awakening and re-inventing older movements. Dates are always approximate: Architecture is a fluid art. Studying architecture requires a comprehensive view of the building, which is examining its historical, religious, social, and functional aspects; for beyond useful purposes the construction of buildings reflects the scientific, religious, social and philosophical worldview of each period. This is simply an outgrowth of the philosophy of the times, which believed that science would fix all the wrongs of the world. The modern movement celebrated these new technologies, emphasizing the simplicity, efficiency and speed of them.
There is always more information about contemporary cultures and architectural styles than historical ones, however, without critical time to distance oneself from the present state of affairs it is always hard to tell what the nature of the present truly is. As such, it is important to keep an open mind - particularly about recent developments - and always consider the possibility of radically different future perspectives.
A repeating phenomenon in the history of architecture as well as in the history of art is the oscillation between opposites: betweenrationalismand emotion, the imitation of nature and its absence,decoration andpure forms. The purpose is to break the inherent structural association among levels of senses in the body, to highlight the basic role of "body" in recognition of the world, and to provide a theoretical basis for the shift of focus in architecture from the alienated status of pure visual performance to human body's experiences. Furthermore, it also opens up a new horizon for the innovation with reference to the body's experiences and changes.
This normative body is not an ideal body based on t aesthetic only values as it does not characterize anybody’s specific body but to a certain extent composes an unapproachable state of regularity. Architecture it is measured within the instant frame of human progression and, it is designed in order to manipulate such an evolution. In fact, the normative philosophy by choosing an idyllic body as an example, opposes the idea of the human evolution. This is exactly where the Post human body comes into discussion, as the next step of evolution.
Posthuman era is already upon us, we are cyborgs: “not in the merely superficial sense of combining flesh and wires, but in the more profound sense of being human-technology symbiots: thinking and reasoning systems whose minds and selves are spread across biological brain and non-biological systems” we will
co-evolutionate in a future heavily populated with artificial agents. We are on a path to changing our genome in profound ways. Extreme human enhancement could result in “posthuman” modes of being.
Posthumanism mainly differentiates from classical humanism in that it restores the stature that had been made of humanity to one of many natural species. According to this claim, humans have no inherent rights to destroy nature or set themselves above it in ethical considerations a priori. Human knowledge is also reduced to a less controlling position, previously seen as the defining aspect of the world. The limitations and fallibility of human intelligence are confessed, even though it does not imply abandoning the rational tradition of humanism. Posthumanism has a much stronger critical edge attempting to develop through enactment new understandings of the self and other, essence, consciousness, intelligence, reason, agency, intimacy, life, embodiment, identity and the body.
The project seeks to question and explore the role of the physical built environment as we move towards what is likely to become an increasingly non-physical age. The project explores the relationship between our architectural environments and the duality of the mind and body that experiences them; a question which is particularly pertinent in the current era where we already inhabit multiple realities and project our sense of self into virtual environments; occupying multiple locations simultaneously through disembodied presence. The goal is creating a new and better world through a centrally imposed vision.
The human desire to acquire new capacities is as ancient as our species itself. We have always sought to expand the boundaries of our existence, be it socially, geographically, or mentally. There is a tendency in at least some individuals always to search for a way around every obstacle and limitation to human life and happiness. The architecture that we also consume in a state of indifference, rarely gives us such sensations. We thus need to produce a kind of architecture that forces us not much to admire it from afar, but rather to be engaged with our bodies, with all our senses. It could, by inviting us to let us go, take our breath away, ensnare us, and play with our emotions. More importantly, architecture needs to challenge those who approach the architectural object and are about to access it not only through their sight, at a distance, but with their own body.
In the postwar era, many optimistic futurists who had become suspicious of collectively orchestrated social change found a new home for their hopes in scientific and technological progress. Space travel, medicine, and computers seemed to offer a path to a better world. The shift of attention also reflected the breathtaking pace of development in these fields. Science had begun to catch up with speculation. Authors such as Arthur C. Clarke, Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, and Stanislaw Lem explored how technological development could come to profoundly alter the human condition.
Although currently a science fiction, we – the human race – are on the cusp of human genetic engineering. Humans have altered the genomes of species for thousands of years through artificial selection. Over the past 40 years scientists have made amazing technological progress to improve nature’s crops and mammals through genetic modifications; but at the same time the opposite occurred as well. This technology did not just improved the human race but made it worst or made it different, change it
To modify nature is our nature.
In thinking through the development of the project I set up a narrative that ties into future aspirations of the city [Kiev], post-human futures, and biotechnical mergers. The project is attempting to achieve an architecture which would lay on culminating from the merger of biology and technology where body/building and biology/technology collapse. Following the development of the scaffolding and the processes which would lead to its construction, the programmatic organs will be discussed in more detail as well as its relationship to the human and ecology.
The site becomes a dataspace as information within the existing context near the site is recorded and processed allowing simulations to be projected in real-time through the atmosphere. The site chosen is Kiev-Ukraine, a site with a strong past, a site that is currently going through war, a site which suffered a lot but still manages to keep its beauty through its suffering. The idea is to travel to the future. By having Post-humanism as methodology and concept, I researched and analyzed a site that experienced radioactivity attacks (Chernobyl) and War. How the site got over all these and how it looks now (even how it will in the future) with the influence of post-humanity and trans-humanism, but most importantly with the influence of human/technology interruptions.
As human beings drew further away from the physical they dropped out for a digitally enhanced existence. Bodies become not bred but built. Organs, limbs, and memories all replaced, manipulated and hijacked as they faded. A post-human existence will be created as body and culture no longer are recognizable from their ancestor counterparts. As human life is prolonged through the replacement of failing body parts, change is not optional. People begin to live above the once vibrant cities in pods that grew like viruses across the city to keep up with the demand of those willingly plugging into a network where they could feel a greater connection with the masses plugged in.
My work deals with the Ukrainian human condition throughout the eras of my site and the search for the roots of what changes the human condition in every human being that lived there. To understand that change, I had to understand what causes it and accept it.
The Post-human Body project starts with one of the smallest elements of the human body; its DNA and in the final chapter it reaches the infinite change. I increasingly felt like a scientist staring through his microscope, zooming in closer and closer to uncover the truth and to understand it. This project is sub-divided into 5 chapters. As mentioned above, the first chapter focuses on the DNA and its genetic memory. The latter is linked to our ancestral memory. The experiences and memories of our ancestors are hidden in our DNA and now and then they surface in our dreams and real-life moments. The second chapter focuses on the great metamorphoses. Throughout our lives, from the very beginning until we die, we are exposed to exterior influences that continuously shape us into the human beings we are. Choice is an important factor here, as we can decide what is good or evil, on what we expose ourselves and what not (mentally and physically), but our surroundings can influence us and our judgment greatly so the boundary between the two becomes diffuse.
The next section, chapter 3, has more focus on the body as a whole than on its DNA. Basically our physical and mental forms are two separate worlds that merge in this reality. Our bodies are nothing more than bubbles of skin, muscle, bone, organs, blood, DNA, etc. Chapter 3 aims to explore deeply the body from a tiny cell to the whole mass that makes it a body. The fourth chapter focuses on society and religion. Society plays a major role in how we see reality and it transforms and shifts the boundary between changes in the world and environment we live within as well as often clouding our judgment. Greed and control of the masses are obviously powerful temptations. But "change" is not always acceptable by our society and the religion. What makes an appearance, a fragment soul or body, a changed human being - acceptable in a society! Who identifies and controls what the word "Acceptable" stands for. And lastly, in the fifth and final chapter, we view the future of the human form, from outer space. Here I strive to leave the earthly form behind and visualize transcendence into something more abstract and beyond human.
Creating the new "change" and taking it a step forward, for the new world that is about to live, for the new world that needs to accept the new changed beauty.
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