Symbiotic Architecture: Prehending Digitality

Parisi, Luciana. 2009. Symbiotic Architecture: Prehending Digitality. Theory, Culture & Society, 26(2-3), pp. 346-374. ISSN 0263-2764 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This article tackles an old, classical problem, which is acquiring a new epochal relevance with the techno-aesthetic processing of form and substance, expression and content. The field of digital architecture is embarked in the ancient controversy between the line and the curve, binary communication and fuzzy logic. Since the 1990s, the speculative qualities of digital architecture have exposed spatial design to the qualities of growing or breeding, rather than planning. However, such qualities still deploy the tension between discrete spaces and continual curving. In this context, the article suggests the computational coexistence of discrete coding with continual morphing, defying any easy resolution for an aesthetic of continuity or discontinuity, the superiority of the analog or the meta-logic of the digital. The metaphysical dimension of such coexistence needs to include the abstract capacities of experiencing the transition from one state to another as the registering of algorithmic processing. Computation is intrinsic to microperceptions, incomputable quantities deploying the infectious property of the digital code. The article draws on the digital architecture of Greg Lynn to explore whether the computational nature of the digital calculus has the potential to challenge the bifurcation between the biological and the mathematical, the physical and the mental.

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Centre for Cultural Studies (1998-2017)



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Date Deposited:

11 Oct 2013 15:54

Last Modified:

19 Jun 2017 11:17

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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