Form Versus Flow

“What if architects dealt primarily not with form but with flow—material flow, energy flow, human flow?” asked Joseph Grima, of the architecture studio Space Caviar, in the first session of Confronting Carbon Form, a five part series organized by the architecture journal Log and hosted by Stanley Cho, Elisa Iturbe, and Alican Taylan. It builds on an issue of Log guest edited by Iturbe in 2019, “Overcoming Carbon Form”, that effectively attempted to move the discussion around climate change away from sustainability (a word she avoids, because it would suggest we want to sustain the status quo) and into form. But form, too, has its own baggage.

“Should we shift the focus from form to flow, as Space Caviar suggests?” later asked Michael Cohen, of citygroup. Iturbe protested. Grima doubled down. After the Second World War, he explained, “Architecture became relegated to the production of form.” Today, Grima went on, the profession mainly concerns itself with “the decoration of trophy buildings.”

In her presentation, Sofia Pia Belenky, a partner of Grima‘s at Space Caviar…

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