Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Review Research // part 2

Memory Device We have decided to bring the idea of memory to our project because we feel there is a close link between the idea of preservation and personal memory. The World Heritage sites are a past legacy, and one can only prevent its extinction through photography, video, writings but before we had these technologies we can only rely on human memory to recall specific characteristics and events that may have occured among the 878 sites worldwide in an attempt to bring them back to life. Understanding of the past is embedded into humans memories in that connect them back to the different systems working within a space/building/natural environment on a social cultural and physical level. We want to use these memories to gain access to a past history that we never experianced to allow us to recreate the past through technological means.
memory is the mental ability to store, retain, and recall information. Three tasks that the human memory performs are encoding [recieving, processing and combining received information], storage [the creation of a permanent record of the encoded information] and last is retrieval and recall [calling back the stored information in response to some cue for use in a process or activity]. Wikipedia.
levels of processingorganization: act of organizing data makes it more memorabledistinctiveness: say data in a distinctive way/example seffort: one recalls more difficult data compared to easier data since more effort is placed on themelaboration: people recall more elaborate sentences then short paragraphswikipedia.
Buildings and spaces can be seen as external memory structures.
"In his writings Rossi criticized the lack of understanding of the city in current architectural practice. He argued that a city must be studied and valued as something constructed over time; of particular interest are urban artifacts that withstand the passage of time. Rossi held that the city remembers its past (our "collective memory"), and that we use that memory through monuments; that is, monuments give structure to the city." Wikipedia.
We want to look at this idea of memory storage in relationship with buildings on both the macro level and micro in how one engages with architecture personally as well as how an entire culture or society engages with it. Architecture we feel is a way of leaving something behind, and becomes richer as time advances. Architecture can be seen as a "progression of historical time" through its defaults, its decaying materials, the patterns of movement, and traces of past culture to name just a few. Next we need to find a way to use these 'traces' and memories to not only broaden our knowledge on the many world heritage sites but to create a catalog of these valuable personal memories to help us achieve sucessful preservation.

Eisenman Architects’ unique approach to design projects is to consider the layers of physical and cultural archaeologies at each site, not just the obvious contexts and programs of a building. Rather then pursueing a particular building type, Eisenman Architects specializes in a particular problem type: projects with difficult siting, programmatic and/or budgetary constraints, and of strategic importance to their environment.

The building is very distinctive from other museums, since it does not respond to any functional requirements, but is rather constructed to create spaces that tell the story of the Jewish people in Germany. The museum itself is a work of art, blurring the lines between architecture and sculpture.

World Heritage Memorable Sites
The fortified walls, barbed wire, platforms, barracks, gallows, gas chambers and cremation ovens show the conditions within which the Nazi genocide took place in the former concentration and extermination camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest in the Third Reich. According to historical investigations, 1.5 million people, among them a great number of Jews, were systematically starved, tortured and murdered in this camp, the symbol of humanity's cruelty to its fellow human beings in the 20th century.
Statement of SignificanceAuschwitz-Birkenau was the principal and most notorious of the six concentration and extermination camps established by Nazi Germany to implement its Final Solution policy which had as its aim the mass murder of the Jewish people in Europe. Built in Poland under Nazi German occupation initially as a concentration camp for Poles and later for Soviet prisoners of war, it soon became a prison for a number of other nationalities. Between the years 1942-1944 it became the main mass extermination camp where Jews were tortured and killed for their so-called racial origins. In addition to the mass murder of well over a million Jewish men, women and children, and tens of thousands of Polish victims, Auschwitz also served as a camp for the racial murder of thousands of Roma and Sinti and prisoners of several European nationalities.
The collections at the site preserve the evidence of those who were premeditatedly murdered, as well as presenting the systematic mechanism by which this was done. The personal items in the collections are testimony to the lives of the victims before they were brought to the extermination camps, as well as to the cynical use of their possessions and remains. The site and its landscape has high levels of authenticity and integrity since the original evidence has been carefully conserved without any unnecessary restoration.

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