I like Charles Mudede, I think he’s a pretty unique guy, but comments like this (“La Defense,” SLOG, The Stranger, 15 July 2008) make my fantasies of an architecture holocaust all the more vivid:
We see that the best buildings have in their design no humans in mind. All the better if the work is alien, monstrous, indifferent–anything more other than what we are already. A work that strives for the inhuman strives to be closer to the truth, which consistently turns out to be inhuman.
That’s all fine and good, but for the rest of us, we thought we were going shopping, commuting, trying to renew some government mandated piece of documentation, when in addition to all the rest of the litany of the day’s petty insults, we have to have an encounter with the monstrous truth as well. One may have thought that alien and indifferent were good for avant guard philosophy books, but apparently they’re a good arrangement for the DMV flagship office too. Thank you, architecture.