On the Dissolution of the Modular Imagination
DOI link for On the Dissolution of the Modular Imagination
On the Dissolution of the Modular Imagination book
An active modular imagination gives us a middle road between designs where everything is predetermined and situations where all is left to chance. The material module is both a set of rules and an invitation to test the limits of those rules. The creation of a system of industrialized construction presupposes that the creators of the system have already imagined nearly all possible applications. The designers of doorjamb concrete masonry units (CMUs) need to have anticipated the characteristics of doorframes in a concrete block wall. More specialized types of masonry have largely supplanted the all-purpose solid clay brick. Concrete masonry construction, as it has been developed in the United States, has displaced brick and stone from their traditional load bearing roles. Jefferson's brick garden walls at the University of Virginia exhibit a materiality reminiscent of ribbons of homemade pasta. Many masonry buildings the Baroque churches designed by Francesco Borromini, for example appear to have been shaped by hand out of clay.