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A change in our awareness of parts and whole

Architecture, as I have come to know it, is the art of building, and if it communicates any message of significance, it does so through construction. Construction not just in the sense of building, not just as a practical necessity, but in the way that we see it, the way we understand it as a manifestation of science, as an object to which we intuitively respond, as a part in a history that we know. I believe that architecture communicates many things, but it does not do so, or does not do so well, by mere association.

Insofar as it communicates an idea about place, it does so through an understanding of scale. Insofar as architecture communicates spirituality, it does so through weight. Insofar as it communicates an idea about society, it does so through joints. Insofar as it suggests something from beyond, something different from, even something contradictory from it’s own reality, it does so using it’s own construction as a point of departure.

from The Architectural Detail, Edward R. Ford
2011 Princeton Architectural Press
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