Sunday, February 6, 2011

IAR221 - Blog Post #4 Campus Circles with emphasis on Commodity, Firmness, and Delight

On Friday, the History of Theory and Design class went on an exploration on campus to look at commodity, firmness, and delight. In looking at these aspects we focused on how these things reinforce circles, form, material, and the axis. During our walk, the location that I feel showed these the most is the library entrance.

Commodity: Function
The function of the library entrance is to direct and guide students and library users inside. Though there are now more entrances into the library, this was the first entrance made (at one time the only entrance). The implied circle shows the locations importance and tells us that it is a sacred spot. The reason it is considered sacred is because it takes one inside a spot to help further learning and education. But even further, it marks the major axis on campus. This location leads the viewer to the stone building and to College Ave. (the crossing center point of the axis). This central specific spot is marked with a stone circle within the concrete walk. Another interesting function of this location is that it leads one to the four most important schools this campus has to offer: School of Education, School of Music, Library (house of all schools and higher learning), and the Stone Building (home economics). Because this school was founded as a Womens only college, these schools are definitely important and significant. This axis also leads to the "wu-wu" smoke stack on campus as well.

Firmness: Structure + Stability
 The structure of this location is pretty well shown not only with how long it has stood firm, but also in the choices of its material. The ionic columns are placed on one side of the circle. The columns shows and inscribes the main entrance to the library as well as shows how delicate and important this site is. The marble is a natural stone found on the earth and is therefore not man made. It represents this firmness and saying that what is on top of a rock will stand and not fall. Though while on our walk in the rain, the marble was slick when wet. They even had a slippery when wet sign and to me this shows a weakness in the structures firmness to the ones walking on it. Though it is a rock and will stand firm, the ones standing on it in the rain may fall down.

Delight: Aesthetics + Form + Surface
In looking at delight in the library entrance, I feel that it is aesthetically pleasing to the eye with the ionic columns. The detail is so special and delicate and shows the importance well. The marble also shows delight up against the brick building. It allows this implied circle to stand out and come closer to our eye. The roundness and verticallity plays well together as well as with the stacking of bricks by its side. For the time this campus circle was built it is truly a delight.

Ionic Column at the library entrance

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