# 3.

Edited by: Riccardo Del Fabbro – Architecture Department Editor – riccardo.delfabbro@positive-magazine.com

Proofreading: Bianca Baroni

Where : ?

Artworks: “a terrible beauty is born”: top five about ugliness.

1

Here we are to the position number three of the chart “a terrible beauty is born: top five about ugliness”. To emphasize the distinguishing features of this architecture, these photos are taken directly from the net, in order to transmit as objectively as possible the idea of this space.

Caricature of a public space.

What is the meaning of this building?
Unique.
No doubt about it: “unique” is the most appropriate adjective for the concept of shopping mall.
Loads of spaces or burial recesses, identical, where the only things that change are the products and the color of the walls, where you can find everything, and this everything is comfortable, inviting, clean, great.
Who goes there wants to live the comfort of a place where they can find everything they need day by day, or what they need for their hobby, or what their hobby need, or just what is necessary to be useless.
Parking comfort, indoor walk, spaces which terribly resemble those little corners of those little city centers or spaces that vaguely remind of space shuttles of some TV series of some times ago, with an always pleasant temperature and the perfect light gradation, where the things that bloom are mostly the overbids 3×2.
“What about Saturday afternoon? Let’s go to the shopping mall!”.
It’s a done deal.

2

Caricature of architecture.
It is plausible, we know it exists, but we often don’t believe in it.
It reminds me the gastronomic request at the core of a famous sketch of the British comic group (but we should say intellectuals) Monty Phyton.
10 cocktails of space frame slab, 3 portions of ventilated glass facade, 2 boxes of pedestrian bridges that become coverings and so on..
Everything mixed.
In defense of who design it, we have to say that there is such a sensitivity.
In fact, in this building, but in many others too, you just have to unite 5/10 architectural elements to create a unique, great, spectacular temple of consumption.

4

Once arrived there, its customers, or its believers, start to admire every element, maybe because it seems familiar, because their eyes are keen to little details, with no understanding of the total potential that stands in front of them.
Being able to recognize architectural elements, without knowing why they seem so familiar, put at ease and helps to be closer with the credit card.
Top-notch.

“The best metaphor for shopping is that of a dying animal – a dying elephant that in its death struggle becomes completely wild and uncontrollable.” *

3

 
What is the meaning of this building?
None.
The more a structure is senseless, the more the people who go there feel identified and keep on hanging out.
This building reflect what people want.
They want the comfort of a space where they can find everything they can use for shopping, parking, indoor walks, always pleasant temperature, one brand products coming from some unknown places.
Loss is unique, standard is identity.
Uniqueness gets lost, identity gets standardised.
Everything is the same and it seems to be good for this.
But maybe I’m wrong, and people support the contrary.
All right here.

 

*The Harvard Design School Guide to Shopping / Harvard Design School Project on the City 2, ‪Rem Koolhaas, Harvard University Graduate School of Design, 2002.

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