28 October 2015


1) In Stan Allen’s “Diagrams vs. Notation,” he writes about the difference between diagrams and notation. “All notations are diagrammatic, but not all diagrams are notational. …Notations belong to time, diagrams to space and organization.” Does a successful diagram then include both, the notation and the diagram( the time, space and organization)? Is Andy Warhol’s Dance Diagram a notation?

2) Stan Allen writes about diagrams as “architecture’s best means to engage the complexity of the real,” but he stresses that the process of graphic conversion is “fundamental.” Allen later writes about “Diagram Architecture.”  From my understanding of his descriptions of “Diagram Architecture,” he does not like diagrams that are used as shortcuts to skip conventional design processes in order to have a finished design. We are encouraged to produce many diagrams to explain our studio projects. Will this repetition of producing  diagram after diagram make us better architects or will it just turn us into “diagram architects”?

3) Allen writes that the contemporary city is no longer legible in the way it used to be and that an urban site is no longer simply geographic, “The local, physical difference of cities, from the first world to the third world, is being progressively erased with the exchange of information, knowledge, and technique.” Do you think that we, as architects, should reflect these global exchanges or should we emphasize the uniqueness of each and every place and culture? How can representation help us with this dilemma?

4) Allen writes that  “Notations always describe a work that is yet to be realized.” It seems that notations and storyboards are similar in leaving room for interpretation and development. Do you think that story boards could play a role in notation making?

5) In his two closing paragraphs, Allen suggests that there are “crisis” of representation in the contemporary city. Do you think that there are always crisis in representation? Don't we all try to find new ways to represent our work and therefore there will never be a perfect way to represent architectural work?

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