Saturday, April 10, 2010

Ironic Dentils

Charlie pulled a shingle from one of the bundles stacked on the floor and brought it to his nostrils. "Don't you just love the smell of fresh cedar? I could just about eat this stuff." He passed the shingle to me as if it were the cork from a bottle of wine.

"Very often architects seem to be afraid to just come out and say they like something, they think they've got to take it back a little. So they'll use some element they like--these dentils, say--but they'll do it ironically as a way of protecting themselves. I suppose it's partly a matter of audience: Is your audience your client, or is it really New York and L.A. and the magazines? Because if that's who it is, then you're going to want to somehow announce you're a sophisticated, postmodern guy, that all this is just theater, instead of being willing to come out and say, 'This is not theater. It's here, it's real, and I happen to like it.'"

Michael Pollan, A Place of My Own

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