Edited by: Riccardo Del Fabbro – Architecture Department Editor – email@example.com
Proofreading: Bianca Baroni
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Artworks: “a terrible beauty is born”: top five about ugliness.
Here we are.
This is number #1.
We are at the end of this huge climbing that has brought us through the 5 ugliest pieces of architecture in a city, that apparently, wants to stay anonymous.
Where can we start?
Initially, we can try to tackle the idea of what “ugly” exactly means.
The concept of “ugly” has different appendages that go from the purely aesthetic up to social life, that often affect the society, sometimes in positive, but very often in a negative way.
It was interesting to understand that we often do not realize when something is bad for reasons of habit or what the market, the masses, the media want us to believe, and therefore suggest.
The number #1 expresses exactly that.
It’s something difficult to understand.
Because it is part of that type of architecture that deviates from multiple architectural canons, nowadays and it did so in the past.
Weird architecture, a never seen architecture. First fruits of architecture.
Something new. Though dates back to several decades ago.
The reason why I consider it ugly is arriving in a while.
I state its historical function: it was a club, a nightclub where people were supposed to have fun and enjoy a party-time.
A fun place suspended, near a highway.
But this is not important, the description is quite meaningless, the photos are what counts.
All this seems to be perfect in order to crown it as a strange urban object.
Once again, why?
I try to give an explanation linking this architecture to the concept of Black Swan that the epistemologist N.N. Taleb gives: he thinks that a rare and unpredictable occurrence can have a tremendous impact on society and, after that, talks about some simplistic theories that try to explain the phenomenon.
His theory can be perfectly described by the phrase:
”Nobody knows what’s going on.” *
Trying to shift our attention to this architecture, who would have ever thought there could be such an architecture like this one? But at this point, the real problem is to bring up the whole notion of avant-garde architecture, new architecture, far from what we are used to see in everyday life.
The very notion of new architecture over the centuries has crumbled, has lost its meaning over the years, up to the most complete acknowledgement of almost every new model.
At that very moment the architectural avant-garde has ceased to exist.
The so-called “black swan” began to procreate without the slightest problem and did not make news anymore.
More concrete examples could be represented by the art nouveau architecture for lovers of neo classic architecture, rational or minimalist fans for habitual of liberty, post modern objects or buildings for religious believers of the movement of the “charte d’athenes”, utopian images and collages for the bourgeoisie of the economic boom in Florence.
I say that this architecture is ugly both aesthetically and socially: it’s so ugly that becomes beautiful.
Yeah, that’s it.
This top5 was only an excuse to come to the notion that I love most.
What is really ugly, what disgusts us, the very fact that something strikes us immediately turns itself into something incredibly fascinating and, to me, something amazing, spectacular, wonderful.
Finally, I like to think that this top 5, with its content, form, appearance, has been very very ugly.
* The Black Swan, Nassim Nicholas Taleb, 2007, Random House, U.S.A.