Friday, January 06, 2012

Pyramid hunting at Biblioteca Alexandrina

Taking a break from all the teleporting, we skipped over to the Biblioteca Alexandrina, 
which I guess is meant to resemble a papyrus forest (just about the biggest Egyptian cliche). 
Why not go all the way and make it a big Pyramid, why stop at Papyrus?
Well actually the library by Snohetta is super nice, and full of young hipsterish Egyptians, so it was the second positive place after Tahrir that we were visiting. And while we were there, why not have a look at the art and architecture section? I almost felt obliged to look for stuff related to Egypt, maybe some unknown Pyramidometabolist curiosity from the 60s or some shopping mall aberration from the 80s?

of course the first book that catches my eye 
(I never use the search engine on libraries, I always drift in the corridors)
was of course an Isozaki monograph

 Isozaki is of course a major Pyramid lover, starting with his double pyramids from "Cities in the Air"
 to the Pharaonic robots at Osaka expo 1970

 to the super cool Egypt-unrelated projects from the 70s where I guess he was testing early rendering techniques? or maybe these were made later? (and might have this 1973 Country Clubhouse been an inspiration for  Toyo Ito's 1976 U-house?

 a house in Venice Beach, 

 Isozaki was never one to shy away from Cute Architecture

 further down the aisle, Ambasz? relation to Egypt?
 if this fukuoka (or somewhere) city hall is not Pharaonic, I dont know what is
 CCTV before REM? by Emilio Ambasz?
 interesting public building (this is just a detail) that looks eerily like Sou Fujimoto's house NA

further down, Peter Cook
  not sure how to explain the relation to Cook's heaps, mountains and ruins to Egypt but I always liked them so they have to be part of the group. We will worry about conceptual consistency later on, if ever.

  and by the way, here is a half, upside down pyramid by Peter Cook

 Temples and Pyramids ahoy over at Michael Graves, whose work I am always trying to like

great Antony and Cleopatra fabric showroom
 very curious performance space
 Luxor for the people, with ancient billboard sculptures and medieval music playing all over the place
 Pyramid +
 and my favorite, Cleopatra worthy entrance, Swan Hotel, somewhere in Disneydystopia

 I picked this up not expecting any pyramids, but out of sheer curiosity, because I always want to know more about Charles Moore, 
 the closest thing to a pyramid is Xanadune resort (yes Xanadu and Dune, not Xanax and Dune)
 back entrance to the great Piazza Italia, and I love how out of sync the car are with the architecture. Lets face it, car design just has always sucked.
ok this was the obvious book to pick up, I really tried to find something to like and post, but boredom prevailed and also I could not wait to go through the book next on my stack, 
(and closing time was approaching)

 James Wines and SITE greatness, and even some projects I had never seen in depth,
(and by the way, I just noticed that most of the books were from Rizzoli? did the Biblioteca have a deal? shady? or some donation?)
 maybe we could say that Floating McDonalds is somehow metaphysically EgyptoAlien? StartGate-ish? but in a Kevin Smith way?
 or this Molino Stucky sinking  facade, surely from the Hans Hollein curated Venice Biennial?
 or this absurdly fabulous faux Archaeological office chair showroom entrance? this might as well be the most absurd corporate lobby installation ever
 petrified office chairs and file cabinets sinking in the sand?
 this was unrelated to Egypt obviously, but I had to pick it up
 maybe Persian Gulf is close enough?

a pyramid is always where you least expect it

1 comment:

James said...

Fantastic pyramid! Thanks for this photos.

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