Brie Ruais/According To The Body

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Brie Ruais/According To The Body
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Brie Ruais/According To The Body says
If modernism is the user’s manual for contemporary life, then why is it so fucked up, complicated, incomprehensible, and illegible? Modernist design makes all the effort to remove the hand and introduce right angles. It implies that the human hand--because of its volatile, organic chemistry--is in opposition to the nature of contemporary life. The modernist ordering of counters, cubicles, cubes, and cubbies is all about the imposition of utopia, even though utopia is stagnant. The universe is an always swimming shark. The universe will flatten, whoop, and incapacitate utopia every time. The universe shark has an AmEx Black Card that has unlimited disorder to spend.


In comparison with steel, plastic, and glass, clay is the ultimate in anti-modernism. Extract it from the earth and form it. The attempt to modernize clay will always be confronted by the material’s limitations. The tile is as far as we got, and that was a long time ago. No one makes ceramic boxes for a reason. As much as people want to modernize the body from its malleable, troglodytic, golem-like self and syntheticize (this is a real word, i.e.,“to make something synthetic”) it, it can’t. It’s only an insertion or a pleat. To understand the effect of a body, use a person’s mass in clay to entertain the universe with an entropic performance of pummeling, kicking, scraping, and resisting the prescribed order of existence.


Clay captures its own transformation. The self perpetuates selfhood by moving into the future--like a lobster shedding against and away from utopia. Naturally, we all have to deal with the aftermath of transformation: a confused memory of where one thing ended and another began. All we remember is the in-between stage that can be described only as a decaying chrysalis. Metamorphosis is a terse act, one part street fight, one part birth. To make an indexical clay surrogate for the body is to do a Clark Kent presto change-o into spandex reality and to make that transformation a cinch by simply confronting the limits of the self in mass and volume.


Architecture’s insistence on 90-degree angles and its imposition of rectilinear space are a default version of reality. They close the window on one’s ability to exist outside oneself, and that’s the ultimate in individuation. You can see individuation as a tool to defy entropic forces, an act of survival plus. In the hierarchy of modern needs, self-actualization is way above survival. Our ability to grasp the idea of the self, personhood, or even a clay, non-lingual being (i.e., art) elevates us from our animal, fight-or-flight, prehistoric selves.
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By: Young World

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