By Antti Ahlava
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It became widely popular and a standard textbook in many architectural schools. The Critical viewpoint can be seen in Frampton’s interest in the mass production and technologisation of art. Frampton’s analysis, however, is too persistent in referring to unsatisfied needs. Frampton’s analysis is not able to withstand Baudrillard’s or even Herbert Marcuse’s criticism. Marcuse, a member of the Critical tradition as well, said in 1964 that needs are a “habit of thought”, the purpose of which is to feed the consumers with the established technological rationalism.
And as in the world of magic, this tautology of speech seeks to induce tautological repetition by an event. 97 Nowadays, communication – instead of ritual – as such has become increasingly more important than it was previously, because the reader, listener, or viewer, is more passive than the participant in earlier events. Among these passivising mythological types evident in the mass media are not only those that resemble the heroes of ancient and classical myths (sports heroes, stars of popular music, moving images and architecture, astronauts and other celebrities).
In my interpretation and approach here, the enchantment of appearance refers to a function of the outward or visible aspect of a thing, its surface and its alterations, sameness, continuity and change. Rational individualism loses its importance where meaningless transformations and metamorphoses of the enchantment of appearance reign. There have not been many contemporary architects who would have consciously thought of their works in terms of the enchant76 Jean Baudrillard: L’echange symbolique et la mort (1993, orig.
Architecture in Consumer Society by Antti Ahlava