Wednesday, June 11, 2003

A picture named flags.jpg
(SELECTED SCHOOL AND COLLEGE BUILDINGS FROM A CAMPUS designed and built by Christopher Alexander and his associates from PATTERNLANGUAGE.COM / CENTER FOR ENVIRONMENTAL STRUCTURE )

"The structure of life I have described in buildings -- the structure which I believe to be objective -- is deeply and inextricably connected with the human person, and with the innermost nature of human feeling. In this fourth volume I shall approach this topic of the inner feeling in a building, where there is a kind of personal thickness -- a source, or ground, something almost occult -- in which we find that the ultimate questions of architecture and art concern some connection of incalculable depth, between the made work (building, painting, ornament, street) and the inner 'I' which each of us experiences."

"What I call 'the I' is that interior element in a work of art, which makes one feel related to it. It may occur in a leaf, or in a picture, in a house, in a wave, even in a grain of sand, or in an ornament. It is not ego. It is not me. It is not individual at all, having to do with me, or you. It is humble, and enormous: that thing in common which each one of us has in us. It is the spirit which animates each living center."

"I believe that the ultimate effort of all serious art, is to be making things which connect with this I of the person. This 'I,' not normally available, is dredged up, forced to the light, forced into the light of day, by the work of art."

"My hypothesis is this. That all value depends on a structure in which each center, the life of each center, approaches this simple,forgotten, remembered, unremembered 'I.' That in the living work, each living center really is a connection to this 'I.'"(Christopher Alexander. An excerpt from Book 4 of the Nature of Order.)