Until recently the ideas of Alison and Peter Smithson have been known mainly to those professionally involved in architecture and urban design. This is so because they have presented their ideas usually in project form, accompanied by elliptical texts designed to prevent the building up of rigid thought patterns in the minds of those studying them.
Ordinariness and Light, by contrast, is an extended exploration of their theories and work over the past seventeen years, in which not only their aesthetic but also their political and emotional concerns are made plain. The book brings together a previously unpublished long text of 1952-53, "Urban Re-identification," and a sequence of later essays and statements. All this material has been revised for the present volume, and provided with a linking commentary.
The general theme is "the invention of an architecture structured by notions of association." The authors argue that the form of the city and the town must correspond to the human needs of the present; looser knit than in the past, even the quite recent past; more open and changing. And for city and town to correspond to this pattern of society there must be better systems of physical communication, and new form-concepts through which society can recognize and realize its new self.
The arguments, examples, and illustrations in the book show how a very small shift in our way of looking at the ordinary things that go to make up cities and towns could restore to them their rich classic connotations. Houses would once more feel like places of adventure, as well as security; roads would be made to give a sense of cohesion and connection, as well as of release. For the Smithsons, to sense an "ordering" in things is to feel liberated and free to use them. Ordinariness and Light will enable all who are exercised about the deterioration of urban life to share their dream of cities that can breathe. It may help, perhaps, to generate in society at large that kind of committed participation that their notion of "ordering" implies.
"Sinopsis" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.
Descripción Farber and Farber (1970), 1970. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: Good. 200p. Nº de ref. de la librería 14949
Descripción Faber and Faber, London, 1970. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: Very Good. Estado de la sobrecubierta: Good. Collection of early texts by influential British architects. 200 p. : illus. ; 26 cm. First edition, first printing. Beige cloth boards, price-clipped dust jacket (now in a removable protective sleeve). Slight shelf wear to jacket edges, chip and small loss to foot of spine, red lettering faded on spine, no inscriptions, tight and square binding. Photographs available on request. All books dispatched same or next working day in robust packaging. Nº de ref. de la librería 008681