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Mount of Things : An Expedition in Object-Oriented Ontology Architecture Crouzet, Laurence 2020-05

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Fig.1Mount of Things:An  Expedition in Object-Oriented Ontology ArchitecturebyLaurence CrouzetBachelor of Landscape Architecture, University of Montreal, 2014Post-Professional Master of Architecture, History and Theory, McGill University, 2016Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree ofMaster of ArchitectureinThe Faculty of Graduate Studies,School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, Architecture ProgramCommittee:Matthew SoulesSherry McKayDominic McIver LopesThe University of British ColumbiaVancouver, CanadaMay 2020© Laurence Crouzetiiiv vBook OneThings                      an Account        of OOO in Architecture :vi viiviiiix     n  o    o  n  e      i  s    i  n  p  o  s  s  e  s  s  i  o  n          o  f    k  n  o  l  e  d  g  e            o  r       t  r  u  t  h    Fig.2INTRODUCTIONSTRUCTURETECHNIQUECONCLUSIONBIBLIOGRAPHYTable of Content List of Figures Inquiry Abstract Thesis Statement Disclaimer Purpose & Justification Approach Background & Limitations Ontography Metaphorism Carpentry Things Architecture PeopleSourcesAnnex Acknowledgementsxxiv2226303438546676100130156158162166174180Book OneTable of Contentx xiPREFACESUPPOSITIONCROSSINGARRIVALPOSTFACE190196280334392Book TwoTable of Contentxii xiii1   black hole   drawing    i2  explosion   drawing    viii-ix 3  key   puzzle piece I    xxi4  abstract   puzzle piece VIII   25   mind map   puzzle piece II    29 6  deconstructivism  puzzle piece IX   337  creation 1   diagram    438  creation 2   diagram    479  creation 3   diagram    5110  creation 4   diagram    6111  method 1   diagram    6412  method 2   diagram    6513  story board   puzzle piece VII   7114  the brick   puzzle piece IV   7515  quadruple object 1  diagram    8116  quadruple object 2  diagram    8117  quadruple object 3  diagram    8118  o 1   drawing    9219  o 2   drawing    9320  o 3   drawing    9421  o 4   drawing    9522  o 5   drawing    9623  o 6   drawing    9724  the building   puzzle piece V    9925  m 1   drawing    12026  m 2   drawing    12127  m 3   drawing    12228  m 4   drawing    12329  m 5   drawing    12430  m 6   drawing    12531  m 7   drawing    12632  m 8   drawing    12733  the architect   puzzle piece VI   12934  c 1   drawing    14435  c 2   drawing    14536  c 3   drawing    14637  c 4   drawing    14738  c 5   drawing    14839  c 6   drawing    14940  c 7   drawing    15041  c 8   drawing    15142  puzzle   puzzle pieces    15343  bibliography   puzzle piece III   16544  method 3   diagram    174 45  method 4   diagram    17546  tree   diagram    176-17747  3 things   drawing    17948  black hole   drawing    182 All Figures made by Author, 2019.Fig.   title   type    p.xiv xvBook OneList of FiguresBook TwoList of Figuresxvi xvii49  book one   photo    18550  sogol’s glasses 1  photo     19451  sogol’s glasses 2  photo     19552  alien   sketch    198-19953  mountain zoom 1  photo    20254  mountain zoom 2  photo    20355  mount sinal model  photo    20456  mount meru model  photo    20557  mount olympus model  photo    20658  mount analogue  photo    20759  shipworm wood  photo    21060  shipworm wood  photo    21161  petrified wood   photo    212       62  petrified wood   photo    21363  alaria esculenta  photo    21464  alaria esculenta  photo    21565  brain coral   photo    21666  paracentrotus urchin  photo    21767  jack’s beanstalk seeds  photo    21868  found tooth   photo    21969  small dendrite plate  photo    22070  small dendrite plate  photo    22171  big dendrite plate  photo    22272  big dendrite plate  photo    22373  delaunay voronoi ice block  photo    22474  delaunay voronoi ice block  photo    22575  pelsite rock   photo    22676  gneiss rock   photo    22777  cloud marble rock  photo    22878  pink basalt rock  photo    22979  tubular construction site  elevation     23180  light panel fragment  photo    23281  light panel fragment  photo    23382  large glass and small glass panel photo    23483  cement’s friction pores panel  photo    23584  cement snap fit joint  photo    23685  cement snap fit joint  photo    23786  wall assembly   photo    23887  wall assembly   photo    23988  wall assembly   photo    24089  wall assembly   photo    24190  visible spectrum cube  photo    24291  anchor model   photo    24392  encountered entity  elevation drawing   244 93  anchor    axon, plan, elevation   24594  pan head bolt   photo    24695  screw   photo    24796  four side fasteners  photo    24897  six sides fasteners   photo    249 98  twelve sides fasteners  photo    25099  many sides fasteners  photo    251100  social housing   elevation     253101  summit    poem    257102  summit speculation  elevation     259103  summit model   photo    260104  summit model   photo    261105  summit model   photo    262106  summit model   photo    263107  summit detail   photo    264108  summit detail   photo    265109  summit detail   photo    266110  summit detail   photo    267111  summit detail   photo    268112  summit detail   photo    269113  curvature and refraction  elevation     273114  curvature and refraction  plan     277115  location   site plan    285116  land mass device  photo    288117  robot 1   photo    289118  robot 2   photo    290119  robot 3   photo    291120  failed triangle table machine  plan, axon    294121  failed triangle table machine  exploded axon    295122  table machine   plan    296123  table machine   axon    297124  table machine   photo    298125  table machine   photo    299126  table machine detail  photo    300127  table machine detail  photo    301128  table machine detail  photo    302129  table machine detail  photo    303130  table machine detail  photo    304131  table machine detail  photo    305132  machine drawing   drawing    308133  machine drawing   drawing    309134  machine drawing   drawing    310135  machine drawing   drawing    311136  machine drawing   drawing    312137  machine drawing   drawing    313138  machine drawing   drawing    314139  machine drawing   drawing    315140  machine drawing   drawing    316141  machine drawing   drawing    317142  machine drawing   drawing    318143  machine drawing   drawing    319144  machine drawing   drawing    320145  machine drawing   drawing    321146  machine drawing   drawing    322147  machine drawing   drawing    323148  machine drawing   drawing    324149  machine drawing   drawing    325150  machine drawing   drawing    326151  machine drawing   drawing    327152  machine drawing   drawing    328153  machine drawing   drawing    329154  machine drawing   drawing    330155  machine drawing   drawing    331156  final machine drawing  drawing    333157  summit and brick  poem    337158  brick   plan    338159  bricks falling   axon    339160  cement brick   photo    340161  cement brick   photo    341162  plastic brick   photo    342163  plastic brick   photo    343164  plastic brick   photo    344165  plastic brick   photo    345166  plastick brick and clay bricks  photo    346167  clay bricks   photo    347168  climates    plan    353169  commercial buildings  elevation     355170  inhabitant’s houses  elevation    357171  inhabitant house model  photo    358172  inhabitant house model  photo    359173  inhabitant house model  photo    360174  inhabitant house model  photo    361175  fibre shelter model  photo    362176  fibre shelter model  photo    363177  fibre shelter model detail  photo    364178  fibre shelter model detail  photo    365179  fibre shelter model detail  photo    366180  fibre shelter model detail  photo    367181  fibre shelter model detail  photo    368182  fibre shelter model detail  photo    369183  expedition book  photo    373184  mountaineering shoes  photo    376185  mountaineering shoes  photo    377186  mountaineering shoes  photo    378187  mountaineering shoes  photo    379188  sogol’s peradam  photo    384189  sogol’s peradam  photo    385190  peradam’s vessel  photo    388191  peradam’s vessel  photo    389192  peradam’s vessel  photo    390193  peradam’s vessel  photo    391194  end   poem    395195  book one   photo    398Fig.   title   type    p. Fig.   title   type    p.All Figures made by Author, 2020.xviiixixIt’s important to us to know if we are alone in the dark. -Stephen HawkingFig.3xx xxi22 23Introduction-InquiryWho?For all who abandon the belief that human access sits at the center of being, organizing and regulating it like an ontological watchmaker.What?See the Thesis Statement.How? “Rules?” said Roark. “Here are my rules: what can be done with one substance must never be done with another. No two materials are alike. No two sites on earth are alike. No two buildings have the same purpose. The purpose, be reasonable or beautiful unless it’s made by one central idea, and the idea sets every detail. A building is alive, like a man. Its integrity is to follow its own truth, its one single theme, and to serve its own single purpose. A man doesn’t borrow pieces of his body. A building doesn’t borrow hunks of its soul. Its maker gives it the soul and every wall, window and, stairway to express it.”1  1  Rand, Ayn. The Fountainhead. Indianapolis: Bobbs Merril. 1943. 18-19.When?Now. It’s the new Copernican Revolution. Why?The reason behind this ontology query lays in my reflection on the divide between the real and the perceived. I speculate on the potential, the alternative truth, the revisited perception of the objet-trouvé as Duchamp says. What interests me is not the question is it true? But: does it work? “What new thoughts does it make it possible to think? What new emotions does it make it possible to feel? What new sensations and perceptions does it open in the body? The answer for some, perhaps most, will be “none.” If that happens, it’s not your tune. No problem. But you would have been better off buying a record.” 2  Where?Here.2  Deleuze, Gille & Guattari, Felix. A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia. London: Continuum, 2004. 16.24 25Fig.426 27The research behind this thesis engages notions of philosophy and architecture through the realm of ontology and materialism3. Understanding the potential residing in phenomenology and applying it to innate objects such as works of architecture opens a world of speculative possibilities. I argue for entities to have no ontological privilege over one another, but rather that all things and beings exist equally. As the contemporary discourse positions our center around human concern as precluding all entity’s perception of the world, I posit that we could perceive buildings or objects as finite things in it of themselves rather than filtering our perception of things through human experience. In the acknowledgment of elevated importance to things, new materialism4, re-inscribes humanist values by merely extending agency, vitality, and social phenomena to nonhuman material.5 3  Context4  As claimed pejoratively by Žižek, but quite promising in my opinion.5  Žižek, Slavoj. Absolute Recoil: Towards a New Foundation of Dialectical Materialism. New York: Verso, 2014.I explore the potential of things through different states and speculate on their ulterior life.6 First, ontography: the material, that reveals its existence through a revisited context and alternative description.7 Second, metaphorism: the building which appears through the reproduction of its inner life, through altered functionality. And finally, carpentry: the architect, appearing through an ensemble of things-in-themselves8 creating their own life and purpose9. The sum of these three chapters explores the nature of being and existing10 and speculates11 on their impact on architecture. 6  Method7  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 36.8  The thing-in-itself as unknowable but imaginable, independent of observation but initiating speculation. 9  Development10  In reality or fiction11  Through applied philosophical inquiries.AbstractThe three OOO techniques (ontography, metaphorism and carpentry) are applied to generate the Mont Analogue12 in the second book. The partial construction of the Mont Analogue and its surroundings serves as an attempt at creating architecture in a space where the reality of anything outside of the thought-and-being correlation is unknowable but imaginable. This thesis is a knowledge seeking expedition to a symbolic mountain where human comprehension and architectural realization are partial. The Mountain is the bond between Earth and Sky. Its solitary summit reaches the spheres of eternity, and its base spreads out in manifolds foothills into the world of mortals. It is the way by which man can raise himself to the divine, and by which the divine reveals itself to man. 12 Daumal, René. Le Mont Analogue. Paris: Vincent Stuart Ltd., 1952.28 29Fig.530 31StatementNew materialism and object-oriented ontology articulate a posthuman13 agenda seeking a repositioning of humans among other things. It formulates a flat ontology in which humans are understood as one agent among others in the assemblage of our environment. My discourse situates itself under posthumanism as it advocates for the liberation of subject-object ontology and advances critical materialist attention. I postulate that all entities have multiple identities and fluctuate between states of being and becoming. We can speculate on their unknowable inner secrets but ultimately, they are autopoietic. 13  The posthuman represents the death of the humanist subject as an embodied being. This means that the human exists beyond its earth experience. I thus place importance not on the human body (the subject) as capable of judgment of objects surrounding them. Their bodily presence is futile. I criticize the post-Kantian reduction of philosophical inquiry to a correlation between thought and being, such that the reality of anything outside of this correlation is unknowable but imaginable. Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. If I do not lay my gaze on an object to acknowledge its very existence, it does not have superior value. All importance of things is not predicated in the relations it holds with the subject.32 33Fig.634 35DisclaimerThis thesis requires that we frame our thinking and exclude a lot of the common-sense world as outside that focused frame. For just a time, we free architecture from its function, but we also free ourselves from our own interests, and prejudices, and expectations about architecture - its function, its social role, how it was physically built. The world that it constructs cannot be reduced to mere purpose. It is based on architectural speculation or imagination, a concept borrowed from Immanuel Kant.14 14  In my consideration of the architectural imagination, there were two primary points. First of all, the imagination is productive. It constructs schema from sense data that it presents to the understanding. The imagination, which is part of the subjective realm, is productive. The imagination doesn’t actually produce knowledge. It doesn’t deal with concepts, but it sets us on the path to knowledge. Now, what we have there is a very powerful model for aesthetic experience. But there’s a serious omission, and that is, on this model, architecture doesn’t have a history. Aesthetics doesn’t have a history. We owe the conceptualization and the model for a philosophy of art history to Hegel. In aesthetic experience, we have to distinguish between aesthetic pleasure and truth. Hegel is after a model where art deals with truth - that art discloses truths about the world by giving those truths appearance. Art in its highest vocation is an art in which the truth of beings, - individuals, but also being as a whole - is the unconditioned, the absolute, the totality in which that being opens itself up. This is what I am after in this thesis. Manifestations of beings. In the late 18th century, Kant produced a foundational theory of aesthetics that we still use today. For him, our experience and our judgment of beauty- our aesthetic judgment- involves, a resonance between two cognitive powers of understanding, on the one hand, and imagination on the other.15 But that judgment of beauty does not depend on having a priori determinate concepts; it involves more feeling and affect. And the affects of beauty are particular and subjective.16 They are my feelings at this moment, but, at the same time, they’re nevertheless endowed with a universality.15  Hays, K. Michael. “The Architectural Imagination.” Harvard GSD at edX. 2019. Accessed: https://courses.edx.org/courses/course-v1:HarvardX+GSD1x+2T2019/course/16  I am not asking how can we think about architecture, but how can architecture be thought-like? What that involves is a very special relationship of subject to object. In our earlier model, the subject was dominant. The subject is productive. The imagination is constructing its reality. Hegel, who is concerned with the truth of art, wants the object to push back. He wants the subject to react to the object, the subject being the categories, the interpretations, the way we are in the world. He wants the subjective realm to react back to the object, so that the object takes on a more primary role and, therefore, the subject can know truths about the object, truths about the world, because the object makes those truths appear. The central claims of Hegel’s philosophy of art are constructed in his famously opaque terminology, primarily the idea of the Spirit or the “Geist.” Sometimes called “Zeitgeist,” which is literally the “spirit of the time.” A way of seeing the Geist or the Spirit is as a kind of all-encompassing substance that determines reality – what I will later call the black hole. Hegel, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich. Elements of the Philosophy of Right. London: George Bell and Sons, 1896.And the universality is not reducible to the laws of reason. It’s not reducible to the laws of morality, which are the other two modes of knowledge. Consideration of aesthetics is necessary as a third mode of knowledge because the concept-driven fields of pure reason and practical morality cannot account for all there is of human knowledge. And of course, this is why Kant is important if we want to show that architecture is a mode of knowledge, or if we want to think of architecture as producing conceptual frames for knowledge.17 17  Another way of seeing Hegel’s idea is still that everything real is with hindsight determined by organizing principles, organizing principles of a whole, of a totality. It could be modeled as a structure, or it could be modeled as sort of conditions of possibility. The whole of reality is organized by a structure that establishes the conditions of possibility. But this structure can only be known in retrospective. This is what I will later call the things. We can use it to make speculations and to make predictions about the future – the state of becoming - but we can’t systematically conceive of this structure entirely. All of the assemblages, all of the inner secrets, all of the ways the world is connected, practically, it would be impossible to give that an organizing structure. Hegel introduces the idea of Spirit as a theoretical organizing structure which is constantly being produced, never settled. The Spirit initially sort of doesn’t know itself. It can’t represent itself. So it reaches down into the material world and creates through collective human activity as its kind of vehicle. It creates art forms and it sees itself. But by the time it sees itself, it has already grown. It’s already changed. It’s already developed. It’s not satisfied with that art form, and it moves to the next one. This is how Hegel gives history a kind of dialectic of being and becoming and the perpetual state of in between.Hegel, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich. Elements of the Philosophy of Right. London: George Bell and Sons, 1896.My attempt is, then, to isolate examples of the particular techniques of production- like ontography, metaphorism and carpentry - three concepts borrowed from Harman18 and Bogost19 - and the particular modes of experience that are characteristic of architecture and different from other sorts of practices, even other art practices. This particular productivity, this particular architectural attempt involves investigations of matter.20 It’s highly intellectual. It’s self-reflexive and recursive. And it’s very abstract.18  Harman, Graham. Object-Oriented Ontology: A New Theory of Everything. London: Penguin UK, 2018.19  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 20  Because architecture is the art that deals most closely with the earth. It’s made of stones and bricks and woods, which are all from the earth. But also, architecture is a very bodily art for Hegel. And for Hegel, the art moves from the more bodily, the more sensuous, the more material forms. As it moves through time, it becomes less material. It dematerializes itself. And it becomes higher and higher in the conceptual, spiritual realm and starts to move away from the body. The real object of architecture is autonomous from my encounter with it. The sensuous object is part of the encounter. The sensuous qualities inhabit the encounter. We can understand this: if I close my eyes, the sensual object vaporizes, evaporates, but the real object, the thing which is architecture, is still there. It has its own autonomy, its own identity separate from the encounter. Hegel, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich. Elements of the Philosophy of Right. London: George Bell and Sons, 1896.36 37The first section of this thesis introduces philosophical theories to stimulate our collective imagination as a faculty that mediates sensuous experience and conceptual understanding for architecture.The second section of this thesis introduces three methods of transformation of things21 into other things. It converts technical means into meaningful perceptions and textures. It addresses philosophy as a component of architecture’s realization and understanding. The second book of this thesis combines those techniques to generate an architectural project. Mount Analogue is the continuation of Rene Daumal’s novel. It introduces two characters as alter-egos of each other (the rational and the creative). They embark on a pursuit to climb a unique Mount, and investigate its things. They find a peradam on their path.21 A thing is whatever cannot be reduced to either of the two basic kinds of knowledge: what something is made of, and what it does. I postulate that no thing can be reduced in such way.Harman, Graham. Object-Oriented Ontology: A New Theory of Everything. London: Penguin UK, 2018. 257.38 39 Architecture is not just about the need for shelter or the need for a functional building. In some ways, it’s just what exceeds necessity that is architecture. And it’s the opening onto that excess that makes architecture fundamentally a human endeavor. Architecture is a technical answer to a question that’s not technical at all but rather is historical and social. The study of architecture is the study of human thought and human history. It’s about the architectural imagination. It’s how to think about architecture, but it’s also about architecture as a mode of thought.22 The thought might contradict the premise. Architecture is not (only) fundamentally a human endeavor as K. Michael Hays affirms.23 Architecture is one of the most complexly negotiated cultural practices there is. And a single instant involves all of the aesthetic, technological, philosophical, economic, political issues of social production itself. 22  Similar to Lebbeus Woods, my fantasy is to think about, what if, as an architect, this is all that I do? How can the practice be expanded and enriched when we are not just looking at history books and work? This is an experiment.23  Hays, K. Michael. “The Architectural Imagination.” Harvard GSD at edX. 2019. Accessed: https://courses.edx.org/courses/course-v1:HarvardX+GSD1x+2T2019/course/And indeed, in some ways, architecture, as we’ll see, helps articulate history itself. More so, architecture helps articulate beings’ place in the history of the world. The inhabitant of space, whatever they might be, has a huge intake on the coming-into-being24 of space and place. And as Dreyfus states from Ereignis, things come into themselves by belonging together.This thesis stems from a phenomenological interest applied to nonhuman entities. We, as humans are elements, but not solely elements of philosophical interest. Object-Oriented Ontology contends that nothing has a special status, but that everything exists equally – bottle-dryer, drawing machines, the babel tower, bricks, arches, architects, and life jackets, for example. “In contemporary thought, things are usually taken either as the aggregation of ever smaller bits (scientific naturalism) or as constructions of human behavior and society (social relativism). OOO steers a path between the two, drawing attention to things at all scales (from atoms to buildings) and pondering their nature and relations with one another as much as with ourselves.” 2524  Heidegger, Martin. Identity and Difference. New York: Harper & Row, 1969.25  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 6.Structure-Purpose & JustificationIf architecture engages a culture’s deepest social values and expresses them in material, aesthetic form then, OOO engages in the material’s deepest truth and expresses them through a speculative, fictive form. To introduce fictional material into a process is a way to spread “intelligence” throughout the whole system, and it allows us to react at each step, to evolve with the project.26 To be a speculative realist, “one must abandon the belief that human access sits at the center of being, organizing and regulating it like an ontological watchmaker.”27 Changing the world means changing ourselves to change the way we experience and perceive the world. Of course, then, the question is not: is it true? But: does it work? “What new thoughts does it make it possible to think? What new emotions does it make it possible to feel? What new sensations and perceptions does it open in the body? The answer for some readers, perhaps most, will be “none.” If that happens, it’s not your tune. No problem. But you would have been better off buying a record.”2826  Roche, François, Durandin, Benoît & Midal, Alexandra. Endlessnessless. Cambridge: The MIT Press & Perspecta. 2010. 158.27  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 5.28  Deleuze, Gille & Guattari, Felix. A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia. London: Continuum, 2004. 16If the answer is anything other than “none” then, we open a world or speculation laying in the potential of things. As Heidegger suggests, things are impossible to understand as such.29 Instead, things are related to purposes, functions, contexts, circumstances, things are ready-to-hand (zuhanden) when contextualized or present-at-hand (vorhanden) when they break out of their usual context. Heidegger’s favorite example is the hammer, which affords the activity of nail driving, something we look past in pursuit of a larger project, say building a house – unless it breaks and becomes abstracted. 29  Heidegger, Martin. Being and time. Malden: Wiley-Blackwell, 1962. 344.40 41 Graham Harman argues that this “tool-being” is a truth of all objects, not just of Dasein: the hammer, the nail, and the architect are ready-to-hand and present-at-hand for one another. But there is something that recedes – always hidden, inside inaccessible.30 He suggests that objects do not relate merely through human use but through any use, including all relations between one object and any other. Harman’s position also offers an implicit rejoinder against scientific naturalism: things are not just their most basic components. Instead, stuffs enjoy being; no matter their size, scale or order.”31 Harman embraces the multifarious complexity of beings among all things and things among all beings. This is how reality is reaffirmed and humans are allowed to live within it alongside the nails, hammers and so on. Heidegger’s terms for things in the world enable non-neutral investigation attitudes on which Harman constructs what he calls object-oriented philosophy. 30  In this thesis I will speculate on the things’ invisible insides and on their will for a redefined identity. 31  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 6.This philosophy focuses on the object, the physical, the matter, the conceptual, the immaterial; it encompasses anything. “The density of being makes it promiscuous, always touching everything else, unconcerned with differentiation. Anything is thing enough to party.”32 Although, Harman, and Bogost, draw a line between thing and object. Both sit as alternatives to one another. Of course, object, as said, encompasses everything from ideas to landmarks, to sculptures but unlike objects, things can be concrete or abstract. The thing, apart from its abstraction ability, refers to a highly charged philosophical term, in the same realm as duality, for example. Kant’s things-in-itself (das Ding an Sich) is unknowable but imaginable. The thing stays unknown until, through experience or speculation, it becomes some image or thought of that thing.32  Ibid. 24.Heidegger argues that Das Ding is human-made and has specified functions. Through his characteristic etymological analysis, Das Ding originally meant a gathering or assemblage33. For him, the gathering is a convocation of human and world; the thing enables a discourse between subject and object. On the other side of the spectrum, an object for Heidegger becomes a thing only when it stands out against the backdrop of existence in use – human use, of course.34 As for Harman, he uses the words - objects, tool-beings, substances or things - interchangeably, but object remains his preferred term, perhaps in partial response to the troubling philosophical history of thing.35 I will use thing throughtout most of this thesis as it refers to both an object and its field of various identities.33  This term is also philosophically-charged. I will revisit its theory further.34  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 24.35  Harman, Graham. Guerrilla Metaphysics: Phenomenology and the Carpentry of Things. Chicago: Open Court, 2005. 90.Bogost distinguishes object and things. As he says: “On the one hand, thing offers a helpful way to shroud the object, reminding us of its withdrawal from others. But on the other hand, the subject of that withdrawal has so frequently been us that reliance on thing carries considerable baggage. One last border problem plagues things: concreteness. (…) But another sort of thing also distances in this situation: the relations between those other objects themselves, (…). A thing is not just a thing for humans, but a thing for many other things as well, both material and immaterial. Yet a thing remains unitary even as it finds itself altering and coalescing into the myriad configurations of different moments within being.3636  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 25.42 43Fig.744 45 The flat ontology suggested here as a method to look at things through a new lens proposes that there is no hierarchy of being. Might it be a thing, its metamorphosed self-thing, its revisited or reconfigured thing or any thing in between, its being itself is an object no different from any other. The withdrawal of being is not merely a feature but also of its very self.37 This means that the being is. And as much as being is inherent to a thing, it also makes it a part of something greater. “On the one side of being, we find unfathomable density, the black hole outside which all distinctions collapse into indistinction. Yet, on the other side, we find that being once again expands into an entire universe of stuff.”38“All of these sorts of being exist simultaneously 37  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 22.38  Idem.with, yet independently from, one another.” 39 No one definition or attribute prevails; there is not only one real thing. Some see the truth of the thing in its structure, its narrative, the code that produces it, its assemblage or anything else. But as Latour’s Principle of Irreduction expresses “nothing is, by itself, either reducible40 or irreducible to anything else.”41 That is, when talking about their beings, not their definition because, as we know, to explain, to define is to reduce. Paradoxically, the chosen lens through which we analyze things, flat ontology, allows things to be both and neither only one definition or a collection of definitions. 39  Ibid. 19.40  Thus, even if certain aspects of a things could be considered transformative on something else.41  Latour, Bruno. The Pasteurization of France. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1993. 158.Latour describes transformation in terms of networks of human or nonhuman actors behaving on one another, entering and exiting relation.“The power of flat ontology comes from its indiscretion. It refuses distinction and welcomes all into the temple of being.”42 No definition is needed because “being is various and unitary all at once.”43  42  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 19.43  Idem.Through a different lens, the actor-network theory (ANT), things get defined through their relations. Latour brings forward a material-semiotic mapping of things. It still allows dynamism of being and becoming as networks evolve and do not reduce things to one sole subject given definition. But it does, still, reduce things44  to a lower status than the one of the subject-definition-giver. Beings thus owe everything to relations for Latour, even if interactions sit outside rather than within the being of a thing. For OOO, the “network” is an overly normalized structure, one driven by order and predefinition. “A generous effort to retain Latourian actor-network theory might replace network with Latour’s later notion of imbroglio, a confusion in which ‘it’s never clear who and what is acting’. ”45 44  Things here includes objects (material) and concepts (semiotic)45  Latour, Bruno. Reassembling the Social: An Introduction to Actor-Network Theory. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005. 46.46 47Fig.848 49 John Law, who developed the ANT with Latour, promotes mess to a methodological concept, one that resists creating neat little piles of coherent analysis. Instead, it’s necessary to pursue “non-coherence”46. “This is the problem of talking about ‘mess’: it is a put-down used by those who are obsessed with making things tidy. My preference, rather, is to relax (or abolish) the border controls, allow the non-coherences to make themselves manifest,” says Law.47 As pointed by Bogost48, a problem arises from this mess-definition: the subject once again defines what a mess is and what neat little piles of coherent analysis are. Why isn’t my mess, someone or something else’s tidy network? “Whose conception of reality gets to frame that of everything else’s?49 46  Law, John. Making a mess with method in The Sage Handbook of Social Science Methodology. London: Sage, 2007. 11.47  Idem.48  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 21.49  Idem.ANT, as its name suggests, places the actor before things. Harman suggested the term object-oriented philosophy to name a set of positions that refuse to privilege the human-world relationship as the only one, or the predominant one.50 “Nothing about OOO is incompatible with the notion of subject; the problem lies in the assumption that only one subject – the human subject – is of interest or import.”51Bogost alternatively calls for a tiny ontology. In response to grand theories of being, he suggests a simple definition “because being is simple”52. Tiny ontology demands no treatise, tome or Wikipedia page; “its basic ontological apparatus needed to describe existence ought to be as compact and unornamental as possible”.53 50  Harman, Graham. Guerrilla Metaphysics: Phenomenology and the Carpentry of Things. Chicago: Open Court, 2005. 90.51  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 23.52  Ibid. 21.53  Idem.“An alternative metaphor to the two-dimensional place of flat ontology is that of spacelessness, of one-dimensionality. If any one being exists no less than any other, then instead of scattering such beings all across the two-dimensional surface of flat ontology, we might also collapse them into the infinite density of a dot. Instead of flat ontology, I suggest the point of tiny ontology. It’s a dense mass of everything contained entirely – even as it’s spread about haphazardly like a mess or organized logically like a network.”54 Dot ontology is the response to flat ontology, assemblage theory, ANT and so on. It is a compact mass of every thing in the spacetime continuum. It resembles the black hole theory of quantum physics.“Popławski suggests that black holes might thus contain entire universes – we may even be living in one (…).”5554  Ibid. 21-22.55  Popławski’s work emphasizes the theoretical suggestion that each black hole contains an entire universe. Ibid. 22. &Popławski, Nikodem J. “Radial Motion into an Einstein–Rosen Bridge” Physics Letters. 2010. Accessed: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.physletb.2010.03.029. 110–13. Things, instead of extending and compartmenting ad infinitum, condense to almost fuse in each other. For OOO, objects are simultaneously part of each other and independent in their own right.56 They are independent of their constituent parts while remaining dependent on them. As Alain Badiou says in his theoretical ontology, being is a membership: “To exist is to be an element of.”57 Units and systems have interwoven memberships. “(…) A system and a unit represent three things at once: for one, a unit is isolated and unique. For another, a unit encloses a system – an entire universe’s worth. For yet another, a unit becomes part of another system – often many other systems as it jostles about.”58 56  Bryant, Levi. The Democracy of Objects. London: Open Humanities, 2011. 215.57  Badiou, Alain. “Politics and Philosophy.” Journal of the Theoretical Studies Angelaki. 1998. Accessed: http://abahlali.org/files/Hallward_Badio.pdf.130.58  This thesis is developed exactly as this system. Chapter I; a unit - the material - is isolated. Chapter II; a system - the building - encloses a whole universe and Chapter III; a unit is crafted into a system.Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 25.50 51Fig.952 53 “The unit reveals a feature of being that the thing and the object occlude. The density and condensation of tiny ontology has a flip side: something is always something else, too: a gear in another mechanism, a relation in another assembly, a part in another whole. Within the black hole-like density of being, things undergo an expansion. The ontological equivalent of the Big Bang rests within every object. Being expands.”59Units operate in the dynamic flux of the world. Things “machinate within themselves and mesh with one another, acting and reacting to properties and states while still keeping something secret.”60 59  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 26.60  Ibid. 27.Heidegger refers to this secret inner potentiality as the thing’s standing-reserve. John Searle suggests through the “Chinese Room” that the translator (machine or man) grasps some understanding of the Chinese characters as units but does not understand their system.61 Alphonso Lingis calls it the inner ordinance or the imperatives that structure the perception of things.62 These inner ordinances of things withdraw; they are ungraspable even if they order perception like an imperative.63 In other words, they are of the inaccessible realm even if they inspire speculation. Definitely, objects’ inner secrets stay divorced of consciousness, cogitation, intention and human reasoning. The subjective experience of things is inaccessible to us in any way but speculative. We cannot know what it is to be a thing.6461  Searle, John. “Minds, Brains, and Programs.” Behavioral and Brian Sciences 1980. Accessed: http://cogprints.org/7150/1/10.1.1.83.5248.pdf. 417–56.62  Lingis, Alphonso. The Imperative. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. 1998. 63.63  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 27.64  This will be investigated further. Reference to Nagel, Thomas. What Is It Like to Be a Bat? Durham: Duke University Press & Philosophical Review, 1974. Things are not what they do, but things do indeed do things. And the way things do is worthy of philosophical consideration and close attention. “Units are isolated entities trapped together inside other units, rubbing shoulders with one another uncomfortably while never overlapping. A unit is never an atom, but a set, a grouping of other units that act together as a system the unit operation is always fractal. These things wonder about one another without getting confirmation.”65At the heart of the unit operation is a phenomenon of accounting for an object. It is a process, a logic, an algorithm if you want, by which a unit attempts to make sense of another.65  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 28.And since objects are all fundamentally different from one another, they each have their own approach, their own logic of sense-making, and through this relation they trace the real reality of another. “(…) Unit operation names the logics by which objects perceive and engage their worlds.” 6666  Ibid. 28-29.54 55 As the philosopher understands objects by tracing their impacts on the surrounding ether, the astronomer understands stars through the radiant energy that surrounds them.67 “If the black noise of objects is akin to the Hawking radiation that quantum effects deflect from black holes, then perhaps it’s there, in the unknown universe, that we should ground a method.”68 This thesis is a quest to find the ether, the surrounding energy, the black noise surrounding materials, buildings and architects to understand architecture. In order to do so, as prior established, speculation is used as it is the only approach to access knowledge or the inner secrets of other entities. 67  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 33.68  Idem.Approach56 57 This discussion on method between Steven Holl and Lebbeus Woods is interesting in developping an approach that challenges the conception of architecture’s inner secret.“L: People say, “What does this got to do with buildings”. Of course it has to do with the definition of architecture and this is one place you and I have, I won’t say differed exactly, but where we have taken different positions. You have always - and this is just my interpretation of you - been determined since the earliest days that I knew you - which is back in the later seventies, to build your architecture. Your idea of architecture. You were doing little shops on Madison Avenue where you can make a detail, you do that pace showroom... remember?S: It’s gone though.L: Oh, so long ago.S: So, I mean, it’s like Louis Sullivan on his death bed with a lightbulb hanging over his head and they come to him and say, “They are tearing down the Shiller building, what do you think?” and he says, “Well, if I live long enough they’ll tear down all my works down. It’s only the ideas that count anyway.” You know”L: That’s right. That’s what you told me.S: It is only the ideas that count.L: Yeah, that has stayed in my mind all those years, since you said that remark about Sullivan, of course. But I think that, uh, you know, where architecture needs to go today is more in asking questions about what is architecture? What is, uh, architecture good for? What do we think it can do? What role does it play in our idea of humanity and of society, and of our personal lives? You know?”69 69  Blackwood, Michael. Lebbeus Woods and Steven Holl: The Practice of Architecture. New York: Michael Blackwood Productions. 2012.58 59 So how can we understand buildings? How do we - human dwellers – understand the essence of unit operations? How can we grasp the relationships of things-in-the-world70 if those relationships go on without us, or even without us knowing of them? Harman answers that the understanding we have of things exists and is valid but as things withdraw themselves to infinity, we can never grasp them fully. Speculation is required to consider the implications of being within a singularity71 in our unknown universe. Speculation on the endlessnessless is a tool for narration and uniqueness, not for industrialization or repetition. It includes and produces scenarios of singularity, of anomaly. “Endlessnessless redefines the ‘aura’ of things. In a way, this narrative machine, extracted screw by screw from mass industrialization, would develop stories and principles of reality, application scripts, constructive behaviors, impermanencies, and uncertainties.”7270  This term refers to Heidegger’s Being-in-the-world; only, it is applied to things here, not only human-things. Thing-in-the-world is a term I “invented” to reference the ontological structure of Dasein, but replacing the ontic of human beings.71  Nagel, Thomas. What Is It Like to Be a Bat? Durham: Duke University Press & Philosophical Review, 1974. 22.72  Roche, François, Durandin, Benoît & Midal, Alexandra. Endlessnessless. Cambridge: The MIT Press & Perspecta. 2010. 158.“It’s very strange that at a time when we could be using computational design in new, provocative, non-standard ways, the intrinsic value of this approach and its production drift and shift somewhere, away from us, into a magnetic black hole.”73 Speculative realism is a philosophy of principle stemming from pragmatic metaphysics. If we ask what it means to be something that we are not, we pose a question that exceeds our own grasp of the being of the world. Things are and they are in-the-world; that is not a matter of debate, but they are exceeding what we know and can know about them.“Since units remain fundamentally in the dark about one another’s infinite centers, the unit operations that become relevant to them differ. A unit’s means of making sense of another is not universal and cannot be explained away through natural law, scientific truth, or even its own perspective. (…) To perform philosophical work on unit operations is a practice of speculation. 73  Idem.In philosophy, ‘speculation’74 has a particular meaning that must be overcome.”75 Here, there will be speculation on the nature of being things as things, not on the human’s approach to it. Speculative realism is a philosophy claiming that “things speculate and, furthermore, one that speculates about how things speculate.” 76 To do so, Bogost suggests using a speculum which he claims is a mirror77 that reflects the world as it really is, unimpeded and undistorted78; but such instruments always reflect a depiction of the reality, not the reality itself. In a similar way using a “tool” would be the same as using our a priori to define the world; its resultant will always be a caricature, a distortion. The scientific, tool-oriented approach is dismissed. 74  Traditionally, speculative philosophy makes metaphysical claims that cannot be verified through experience or through science.75  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 30.76  Ibid. 31.77  Although most women might have a different definition of this object.78  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 31.Speculation pretends to no such claims and uses creativity and poetry that “beings conduct as they gaze earnestly but bemusedly at one another”79. This method makes a shift from scientific methods80, qualitative or quantitative and introduces creativity to fuel an ontological way of thinking. It is the preconized method of this thesis because creativity is inherent to the practice and theory of architecture. The architect’s job is not merely that of documenting the state of the environment but making an effort to grapple with it in particular circumstances. “Speculative realism really does require speculation: benighted meandering in an exotic world of utterly incomprehensible objects.” As architects, our duty is to amplify the black noise of objects to make the resonant frequencies of the inner secrets inside them pulsate in satisfying ways. Our job is to design the fictions of their unit operations. “Our job is to go where everyone has gone before and do everything everyone has done before, but where few have bothered to linger.”81 Our job is to challenge the rules. 79  Idem.80  Scientific Methods usually are constructed as such: observation, hypothesis, experimentation, analysis, conclusion, report. See p.60 for further explanation.81  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 34.60 61Fig.1062 63 “Rules?” said Roark. “Here are my rules: what can be done with one substance must never be done with another. No two materials are alike. No two sites on earth are alike. No two buildings have the same purpose. The purpose, the site, the material determines the shape. Nothing can be reasonable or beautiful unless it’s made by one central idea, and the idea sets every detail. A building is alive, like a man. Its integrity is to follow its own truth, its one single theme, and to serve its own single purpose. A man doesn’t borrow pieces of his body. A building doesn’t borrow hunks of its soul. Its maker gives it the soul and every wall, window and, stairway to express it.”8282  Rand, Ayn. The Fountainhead. ‎Indianapolis: Bobbs Merril. 1943.18-19. In order to consider appearances seriously, we must avoid commonsensical presuppositions. “Husserl gives the name ‘epoché’ (suspension) to this procedure of bracketing our natural assumptions about perception. (…) The epoché ‘entails a change of attitude toward reality and not an exclusion of reality’.”83 The speculation in this thesis requires a consideration for unit operations that entangle beings and requires something similar to Husserl’s phenomenal act. “Speculation is akin to epoché. It produces transcendence in the Husserlian sense: a concrete and individual notion, (…).”84 83  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 32.84  Zahavi, Dan. Husserl’s Phenomenology. Palo Alto: Stanford University Press, 2003. 45.“Husserl characterizes the experience of things as a process of intersubjectivity – the experience of other (people). But the (alien- thing) is not limited to another person or even another creature. The alien is anything – and everything – to everything else.”8585  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 34.64 65 Fig.12Fig.1166 67Background & LimitationsThe term “object-oriented philosophy” was created by Graham Harman, the movement’s founder, in his 1999 doctoral dissertation “Tool-Being: Elements in a Theory of Objects.” In 2009, Levi Bryant rephrased Harman’s original designation as “object-oriented ontology,” giving the movement its current name. Bryant has suggested that flat ontology can unite the two worlds, synthesizing the human and the nonhuman into a common collective. An ontology is flat if it makes no distinction between the types of things that exist but treats all equally, the spirit behind the name Bryant gives OOO theory, “the democracy of objects.”86 Similarly as saying that black lives matter does not diminish the importance of other-than-black lives87, arguing for a flat ontology does not mean rejecting human beings or their place in the world.86  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 16-17.87  Maybe this statement should have been kept in the footnotes.Posthumanism has signified “human enhancement” for too long. “A true posthumanism would neither extend humanity into a symbiotic, visionary future nor reject our place in the world via antihuman nihilism.”88 Instead, as Bryant puts it, a posthumanist ontology is one in which “humans are no longer monarchs of being, but are instead among beings, entangled in beings, and implicated in other beings.”89 We can no longer claim that our existence is special as existence. Object-oriented philosophy rejects the privileging of human existence over the existence of nonhuman objects. It opposes the anthropocentrism of Kant’s Copernican Revolution90, whereby objects are said to conform to the mind of the subject and, in turn, become products of human cognition. It argues for the inherent essence of things. In contrast to Kant’s view, object-oriented ontology maintains that things exist independently of human perception and are not ontologically reliant on their relationships with humans or other things. All relations, including those between nonhumans entities, such as the speculum, distort their related objects in the same basic 88  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 16-17.89  Bryant, Levi. The Democracy of Objects. London: Open Humanities, 2011. 44.90  Kant’s Copernican Revolution is understood here as a metaphor for his paradigm shift.manner as human consciousness and exist on an equal footing with one another. OOO, through speculative realism, deconstructs the correlation between thought and being, such that the reality of anything outside of this correlation is unknowable. The human perception is just one among many ways that objects are. “To put things at the center of a new metaphysics also requires us to admit that they do not exist just for us.”91  91  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 8-9.68 69The proximity of OOO and assemblage theory lays in their agreement that any object can be detached from the relations in which it exists. Manuel DeLanda, one of the main contributors to assemblage theory agrees with Deleuze and Guattari that the relationships of component parts are not fixed nor stable; rather, they can be displaced and replaced within and among other bodies, thus approaching systems through relations of exteriority.92 DeLanda’s conception of the relationship between parts and wholes is designed to do something very similar to what Ian Bogost in Alien Phenomenology calls units and systems. In OOO, the universe is composed of objects wrapped in objects wrapped in objects and so on. DeLanda emphasizes that the components of an assemblage are entities in their own right, just as Harman claims for things, that have an existence independent of the assemblages to which they belong. Levi Bryant shed light on the major difference between OOO and assemblage theory: “DeLanda holds that there are only relations of exteriority, whereas OOO maintains that there are both relations of interiority and exteriority. Each object is composed of relations of interiority or what I call ‘endo-relations’ and what Harman calls ‘domestic relations’. Furthermore, within the 92  DeLanda, Manuel. A New Philosophy of Society: Assemblage Theory and Social Complexity. New York: Continuum. 2006.framework of OOO the parts that make up an object are in their turn objects and are therefore independent of the macro-scale assemblage to which they belong.”9393  Bryant, Levi R. “Assemblages Against Totalities.” Larval Subject. 2010. Accessed: https://larvalsubjects.wordpress.com/2010/09/08/drg-assemblages-against-totalities/?fbclid=IwAR2AiMZfRV1gWHnYZP_pKaQ_XRqVzE2PAH1PWgsdN4E0AyBg5qzhDZwmF6YAs for ANT, Latour advocates for the uncontested existence of things at all scales. But things remain in motion and power, through the actor-network theory, far more than they do when they are inactive. As a result, “entities are de-emphasized in favor of their couplings and decouplings.”94 Entities give way to the sometimes-fleeting alliances they entertain with other entities. This approach undermines the object. All in all, we may be able to describe how such objects and assemblages work or relate. But what I am after is what do they experience? What are they and what can they be? What’s their proper phenomenology? In short, what is it like to be those things?95  94  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 7.95  Ibid. 10.Flat - or dot - ontology grants the same ontological status to all things but even if “all things equally exist, they do not exist equally.”96 This claim by Bogost might get some grounding from the abridged seven commandments of Orwell’s Animal Farm: “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” 97   Indeed, things do not exist equally. Existence is not singular and unchangeable. nor composed of fundamental elements of equal size and nature. It is not an abstruse and undefined indeterminacy. Instead, “things can be many and various, specific and concrete, while their being remains identical.”98  96  Ibid. 11.97  Orwell, George. Animal Farm: A Fairy Story. London: Secker and Warburg, 1945.98  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 12.70 71Fig.1372 73Through triple O, I will apply the speculative realism method to three modes of practice. First, ontography entails the production of works that reveal the existence(s) and relation of objects.99  Second,  metaphorism  denotes the production of works that speculate about the “inner lives” or what I called prior the “inner secrets” of objects, including how objects translate the experience of other objects into their own terms.100 Third,  carpentry  which indicates the construction of artifacts that illustrate the perspective of objects, or how objects construct their own worlds and purpose.101 99  Bogost, Ian. “Latour Litanizer”, Ian Bogost Blog. 2009. Accessed: http://bogost.com/writing/blog/latour_litanizer/100  Bogost, Ian. “Alien Phenomenology.” Ian Bogost Blog. 2011. Accessed: http://bogost.com/writing/blog/alien_phenomenology/101  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 90.Technique-The development of this thesis assumes that we are not the only object recognized for its “special magic”. Other objects are here given a capacity for wonder.102 “Real” and “fictional” or “sensual” things participate equally in the infinite. Tiny ontology emphasizes the rejection of rigid ontological categorization of forms of being. 103102  Segall, Matthew David. “Cosmos, Anthropos, and Theos in Harman, Teilhard, and Whitehead.” 2011. Accessed: https://footnotes2plato.com/2011/07/12/cosmos-anthropos-and-theos-in-harman-teilhard-and-whitehead/103  Coffield, Kris. “Interview: Ian Bogost.” Fractured Politics. 2011. Accessed: https://www.upress.umn.edu/press/press-clips/fractured-politics-interview-ian-bogost74 75Fig.1476 77He continues, “ontography is an aesthetic set theory, in which a particular configuration is celebrated merely on the basis of existence.”109  109  Idem.Harman describes ontography as a deal “with limited number of dynamics that can occur between all different sorts of objects”.104 It was then developed as part of his philosophy, mostly through his metaphysics interpretation. But the term itself was developed few decades prior in The World View of Contemporary Physics as such: “ontology is the theory of the nature of existence, and ontography is its description”.105 In other words, ontography is an alternative to its theoretical counterpart.106 It generally deals with the causal relationship between beings and their earth,107 whether diverse or specific. Bogost adopts ontography as a title for a global inscriptive strategy that uncovers the satiation or “repleteness” of units and their interobjectivity. “From the perspective of metaphysics, ontography involves the revelation of object relationships without necessarily offering clarification or description of any kind.”108 104  Harman, Graham. Object-Oriented Ontology: A New Theory of Everything. London: Penguin UK, 2018. 105  Kitchener, Richard F. The World View of Contemporary Physics: Does It Need a New Metaphysics? Albany: Suny Press, 1988. 76.106  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 36.107  Ibid. 36-37108  Ibid. 38.OntographyThis definition is particularly interesting as it acknowledges the various states of beings of a thing. A brick, for example, is celebrated as it came-into-being110 as such but has the standing-reserve111 to develop a different configuration and arrive at another realisation112. The brick is a juxtaposition of a human-made, aggregated object, a natural condition, an action, and a concept.113 It is formal, material, aesthetic, and has representational implications of its hypothetical structure.114 It is a juxtaposition of what it was prior to coming into its brick-being – particles – and what it might become a part of – let’s say an arch115-. From the coming together of the first few particles to the formation of a brick, “the value of travel, lays not the destination so much as the adventures along the way. Then surely, these must have had the most fabulous journeys. (…) Their 110  Heidegger, Martin. Being and time. Malden: Wiley-Blackwell, 1962. 111  Heidegger, Martin. The Question Concerning Technology and Other Essays. New York & London: Garland Publishing, 1977.112  Heidegger, Martin. Being and time. Malden: Wiley-Blackwell, 1962.113  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 44.114  Ibid. 46.115  This is a reference to the famous conversation Louis Kahn entertained with a brick. Hall, William. Brick. London: Phaidon Books, 2015.journey – as wondrous as its travels might have been - may very well hold even greater insight into our environment.”116 Travelling here is understood as a metamorphosis from what the thing was, to what it became through new, unforeseen relations, capacities, and functions. It deals with spatiality and temporality as agents of influence on the nature of being. The thing is in constant autopoiesis117. 116  Borasi, Giovanna. Journeys: How traveling fruit, ideas and buildings rearrange our environment, Montreal: Canadian Center for Architecture, 2010. 290-291.117  A perpetual production and maintenance of the self. 78 79This chapter, and ontography more generally, draws attention to the countless things that go unseen. As Harman puts it, it deals with the relations between the real and sensual qualities of objects.120 120  Harman, Graham. The Quadruple Object. Winchester: Zero Books, 2011. 124.Ontography takes into account the Deleuzean becoming, a “preference for continuity and smoothness instead of sequentiality and fitfulness”.118 The familiar refrain of “becoming-whatever” (it doesn’t matter what) suggests comfort and compatibility in relations between units, thanks to the creative negotiations things make with each other.119 It is the human interpretation and intervention on things that isolate units within a system to create members that are mutual aliens. Things exist not just for humans, but for themselves and for one another, in ways that might surprise and dismay us. 118  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 40.119  Idem.80 81The Quadruple ObjectThere are two kinds of objects and two kinds of qualities: real and sensual, in both cases. Real objects and qualities exist in their own right, while sensual objects and qualities exist only as the correlate of some real object, whether human or otherwise. Since objects cannot exist without qualities and vice versa, there are only four possible combinations, indicated by the four lines on the first diagram.The MetaphorIn this diagram we initially have the normal case of a sensual object with its sensual qualities (SO to SQ). By assigning improbable but not impossible new sensual qualities to the sensual object – such as the metaphorical ‘wine-dark brick’ rather than the literal ‘dark red brick’ – the sensual object ‘brick’ is cancelled (hence the crossing out of SO), being unable to uphold such unusual qualities. A mysterious real object is needed to do the job. But since brick as real object withdraws inaccessibly from the scene (hence the dotted line on the uppermost RO), the sensual qualities of the metaphor are supported instead by the only RO that is not withdrawn from the situation: I, myself, a real experiencer of the metaphor. Metaphorism will be further explored in the next chapter.The KnowledgeWe begin again with the normal case of a sensual object and its sensual qualities. Just as with Husserl’s phenomenology, the evident qualities of a thing are too shallow to provide us with genuine knowledge (hence the crossing out of SQ). But whereas Husserl thinks the real qualities of an object can be known by the intellect even though the senses fail, OOO holds that real qualities - no less than real objects - withdraw from both sensual and intellectual experience: hence the dotted line on the uppermost RQ. For this reason, the sensual object SO can combine only with the substitute RQ that I myself as the knower bring to the table.122122 Ibid. 80, 84, 184.Harman’s Quadruple Object Theory involves the object -or the thing- and its potentialities. Ontography explains how a thing has various identities and is not only represented through its real qualities but also through its sensual object and sensual qualities. More so, the object precedes its qualities despite not being able to exist without them.121 This theory is similar to Deleuze’s theory on the actual (the real) and the virtual (the possible) which will be explored further in the Carpentry section. 121 Harman, Graham. Object-Oriented Ontology: A New Theory of Everything. London: Penguin UK, 2018. 259.Fig.17Fig.16Fig.1582 83Schumacher’s understanding is different than Harman’s.  He claims that Harman’s concept of object is the most general concept imaginable and in no way privileges physical objects that would be easily recognizable as discrete, distinct figures unmistakeably set against a background. “Within Harman’s abstract conceptual scheme, an architectural project that camouflages, embeds and diffuses itself into an urban context, making itself indistinguishable would be no less an object for that matter. Both projects would be objects, and both would be equally ‘withdrawn’ from us and other objects in their vicinity. What Harman’s calls the withdrawal, is not indicating a rejection of relations with other entities but implies the ultimate inaccessibility of the object itself conceived as surplus beyond its currently manifest relations, i.e. Harman’s anti-relationism does not stand against relations as such. He admits that most objects engage in myriads of relations - but only against the philosophical attempt to ‘reduce’ an object to its current relations, as if the object was constituted solely by its current relations or exists only due to its relations.”123 Schumacher misunderstands Harman’s anti-relationism as he implies that architectural works or objects are into-the-world only through their current relations to other things. I believe Harman refers to relationism of an object to itself and its qualities. The Quadruple Object includes no other object than the thing itself. It is devoid of external validation. 123  Schumacher, Patrick. Critique of Object-Oriented Architecture. Austin: The University of Texas at Austin. 2018. 78.84 85Things embody the changes and influences that have exerted a force (physical or representation) in modifying their surface and external structure.125 The new products are mutable and relational objects that offer possibilities for unexpected forms and applications.126 They are “indurated, multi-composite entities made by agglutination”127 of qualities. Only through speculation could they fulfill their structural potential and exert their limitless combinatorial possibilities. I posited previously that all things have some kind of standing reserve in Heidegger’s terms. The brick might want to become an arch but it might want to become something else. 125  Parikka, Jussi. Materiality Grounds of Media and Culture, in Geology of Media. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2015.126  Gabrys, Jennifer. Digital Rubbish: A Natural History of Electronics. Ann Harbor: University of Michigan Press, 2011.127  Parikka, Jussi. Materiality Grounds of Media and Culture, in Geology of Media. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2015.“Harman uses this aspect of Heidegger’s tool analysis to support his central claim for OOO: that objects have hidden qualities and realities, and they withdraw from our understanding. For Harman, an object has a vast number of qualities, some knowable, some unknowable; to select any one of them to represent its full reality as an entity would be pointless.”124124  Gage, Mark Foster. Killing Simplicity: Object-Oriented Philosophy in Architecture. New York: Log, 2015. 95.86 87“There is an inexplicable collision between many parallel universes. Henri Bergson, who dedicated an essay on Le Souvenir du présent et la fausse reconnaissance, which elucidates what might be called a weakening of “the function of reality”. There lies a momentary unfolding of the various potentials of the thing. “Something like the famous paradox set up by the physicist Ernst Schrödinger in 1937. He thought up an experiment in which a cat, a radioactive particle, and a mechanism made up of a Geiger counter, a hammer, and a vial of lethal gas were locked in a closed box. If the atom disintegrated during a given time, the counter would be activated, then the hammer, which would break the vial, then the gas would escape from it, and the cat would die. In a space ruled by the laws of classical physics, there is as much probability that the atom would disintegrate as that it would not. According to the laws of quantum physics, two possibilities superimpose one another; the atom is simultaneously activated and disintegrated; the cat is subjected to a state of uncertainty, at the same time both dead and alive. This  simultaneity is only completed at the instant when an outside individual observes the interior of the box… This principle, which dominates the subatomic and unknown parts of our universe, implies the co-emergence of two or more worlds simultaneously; so called parallel worlds. No future, no present, no reality?”128 128  Roche, François, Durandin, Benoît & Midal, Alexandra. Endlessnessless. Cambridge: The MIT Press & Perspecta. 2010. 158.88 89It is the thing’s personal legend130 that contains all. Or as Timothy Morton would say, the thing’s soul – and all things have one.131 I understand architecture as the material actualization of Soul – or Spirit. As a kind of manifestation of the beings’ wish and desire to organize itself and represent itself. Architecture usually operated on the temporal scale of now and later. It develops a corporeal arrangement of things, through human perception. But some architects reject the singularity of the now in favor of the infinity of the meanwhile132 or furthermore the possible. Both the meanwhile and the possible are powerful ontological terms. They refer to the temporality of the unit and inscribes it in a grander system and a set.133130  “To realize one’s Personal Legend is a person’s only real obligation.” Coelho, Paul. The Alchemist. New York: Harper Torch, 1993. 24.131  Timothy Morton believes in animism.  132  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 50.133  Idem.As François Blanciak mentions in Siteless129, abstracting architectural forms offers “an open-ended compendium of visual ideas for the architectural imagination to draw from.” Within each proposed form of building, he suggests hypothetical composition that embeds a program, a structure, a style, an ideology, and so on, and so forth. Exemplifying the various human intervention never contains the whole mysterious alien worlds of objects. 129  Blanciak, François. Siteless: 1001 Building Forms. Cambridge: The MIT Press, 2008. Originating in the 1980s, the architectural style of Deconstructivism questions the precepts of design and advocates for a nonlinear dynamism. It embraces material deformation or non-intuitive shapes in favor of abstracted forms of movement. Deconstruction as a mode of thinking and designing dismantles some a priori on form, aesthetics, structure and malleability of materials; it materialized the epistemological rupture introduced by Claude Parent. It embraces illusion, motion, gesture, and manifests the complexity and plural forms of beings of buildings and materials. Although it fails at embodying fully those characteristics as those buildings mimic motion while being rigid and static. The experience of such works is complex in what they are and what they want to become, and this is where they succeed, in my opinion. The image they project “is deflationary not because their subjects are subordinate but because their composition underscores unseen things and relation. (…) [The buildings] register the world. (…) The result is ‘imaginatively liberating’. [They] posit objects, even the objects of human activity, in a world of mysterious relation with one another.”134 134  Ibid. 49.Deconstructivism is inscribed in the postmodern architecture current which, as Venturi says, advantages ambiguity and the plural. “I speak of a complex and contradictory architecture based on the richness and ambiguity of modern experience, including that experience which is inherent in art. I welcome the problems and exploit the uncertainties. I like elements which are hybrid rather than ‘pure’, compromising rather than ‘clean’, accommodating rather than excluding. I am for messy vitality over obvious unity (…). I prefer ‘both-and’ to ‘either-or’, black and white, and sometimes gray, to black or white (…). An architecture of complexity and contradiction has a special obligation toward the whole: its truth must be in its totality or its implications of totality. It must embody the difficult unity of inclusion rather than the easy unity of exclusion. More is not less.”135135  Venturi, Robert. Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture. New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2002. 16.90 91This posture of the movement allows for the mating relationships of parts, subassemblies, and higher assemblies. The units and the systems blur into one another and record the presence of many potential operations, a profusion of particular perspectives on a particular set of things.136 It embraces the messiness and the contradiction of being both a representation and an abstraction. “Instead of worshipping simplicity, OOO embraces messiness. We must not confuse the values of the design of objects for human use, (…) with the nature of the world itself, (…). It shows how much rather than how little exists simultaneously, suspended in the dense meanwhile of being.137 It reacts to simple explanations and the shortest way possible138 to favor diverse ways of expression and existence. Of course, ontography also deals with the notions and development of identity as dynamic. Being is messy and can be articulated in various ways. The identity of a brick is expressed through architecture and spatial imaginations, through materiality is inherent to this investigation. The part-to-whole relationship is inherent to its physical 136  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 52.137  Ibid. 59.138  Nature does not necessarly operate in the shortest way possible, as Aristotle claimed. Aristotle. Physics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008.and representational qualities. The isolation of tectonic fragments enabled speculation on its evolution as an arch as it expresses itself in Kahn’s famous imagined conversation. “What do you want, brick?” he says. “Brick replied: ‘I like an arch’. Kahn continues, ‘Look, I want one too, but arches are expensive and I can use a concrete lintel ... what do you think of that brick?’. Brick says: ‘I like an arch’.” This conversation didn’t end with a few odd looks, but rather a deeper meditation on the uses of masonry, Hall explains in his book Brick139. “Kahn wanted his students to see the limitations – and especially the potential – of materials, and to use them appropriately.” The brick eventually won that arch conversation with Kahn. This dreamed dialogue is one of the many speculative realities of the brick. James Wines would agree this ontographical method of looking at things allows for the inclusion, fusion, inversion, indeterminacy, exaggeration and happenstance”140 as principles underlying interventions of art, buildings or public works.139  Hall, William. Brick. London: Phaidon Books, 2015.140  Belogolovsky, Vladimir. “Interview with James Wines: “The Point is to Attack Architecture!” ArchDaily. 2016. Accessed: archdaily.com/783491/interview-with-james-wines-the-point-is-to-attack-architectureOur subjective visual impression and encounter with things is so far rationalized that the very impression could itself become the foundation for a solidly grounded and yet, in an entirely modern sense, “infinite” experiential world.141 Panofsky lays a very powerful point a point, which is that having a new perspective, in an almost unique conceptual system, brings subject and object together, brings viewer and the world together. If we’re going to think of alien phenomenology as this structure, as this template, as this mechanism for constructing knowledge about the world, not just for describing a world that already exists, then we need a couple of things. We need a system. And the system should have both a structure, and that structure should relate elements one to another within the system. In such a system, you not only would use an ontographical perspective to regulate buildings or to describe buildings, you would also relate buildings to one another, and indeed, this, would open up, would expand almost to infinity the possibility of spatial perception and spatial experience.142 This system of relating things will be explored through metaphorism in the next chapter. 141  Panofsky, Erwin. Perspective as Symbolic Form. Cambridge: The MIT Press, 1991.142  Hays, K. Michael. “The Architectural Imagination.” Harvard GSD at edX. 2019. Accessed: https://courses.edx.org/courses/course-v1:HarvardX+GSD1x+2T2019/course/92 93Fig.18Fig.1994 95Fig.20Fig.2196 97Fig.22Fig.2398 99Fig.24100101Within a system, there are units. The interactions between units and systems constitute different moves in the material world. From a human perspective, they correspond mostly to how we engage with them through action. Our first-person experience of such interaction offers “phenomenological inquiry; not only perception and thought, but also memory and emotion.”143 Bogost mentions that alien phenomenology is not a practice of scientific naturalism seeking to define the physical or causal relations between objects.144 Rather, alien phenomenology, to my understanding, acknowledges that there are limitations to the definition we can attribute to things. In short, things are always alien to one another, us included. 143  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 61.144  Ibid. 62.Thomas Nagel arrived at this very conclusion in his essay “What is it like to be a bat?”. 145 Nagel’ claims that consciousness has a subjective character that cannot be reduced to its physical components. And “physical reductionist positions hope to erase the subjectivity of experience by explaining away via underlying physical evidence.”146145  Nagel, Thomas. What Is It Like to Be a Bat? Durham: Duke University Press & Philosophical Review, 1974. 435–450. 146  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 62.Metaphorism102103In Husserl’s account of object transcendence, there is a distinction between the features of the object that are experienced by the subject as determinate (through phenomenological sense-data) and the features of the object that are experienced by the subject as indeterminate (everything else). In Phenomenology of Perception, Merleau-Ponty expresses that we perceive objects as transcending (or withdrawing as stated previously) what we determinately see of them and we experience the indeterminate features of an object. Basically, Husserl claims the indeterminate features of an object are hypothesized but sensibly absent, while Merleau-Ponty claims that they have a positive presence in our experience of the object. He furthers that we really do perceive the inner secrets of the object. It’s not because he believes we are presented with determinate sense data from it, but rather because he thinks that perceptual experience is not the presentation of sense data.147 Husserl states that the real object is never seen entirely. Merleau-Ponty states that “to look at an object is to inhabit it, and from this habitation to grasp all things in terms of the aspect which they present to it. But in so far as I see those things too, they remain abodes open to my gaze, and, being potentially lodged in them, I already 147  Merleau-Ponty, Maurice. The Primacy of Perception. Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1964. 15.perceive from various angles the central object of my present vision.”148 I would argue that Merleau-Ponty acknowledges that certain indeterminates are present thus invisible. In other words, there is presence of a standing-reserve and I can witness to that, and to that only; not to the materialization of this standing-reserve. In other words, to understand fully one thing is impossible. Phenomenologically, we are ourselves and can only understand ourselves. If it was possible to understand the intricacies of another thing’s existence and embodiment through all its senses, we would then be that other thing. Embodiment is tied to our understanding of our environment. Nagel calls this “the subjective character of experience.”149 That character, entails what is it like to be that organism, that entity. 148  Merleau-Ponty, Maurice. Phenomenology of Perception. Abingdon: Routledge, 2013. 68.149  Nagel, Thomas. What Is It Like to Be a Bat? Durham: Duke University Press & Philosophical Review, 1974. 436.104105“For Nagel, the very idea of experience requires this ‘being-likeness,’ a feature that eludes observation even if its edges can be traced by examining physical properties. Because of this elusiveness (which OOO calls withdrawal), physical reductionism can never explain the experience of a being. (…) There is no reason to suppose that it is subjectively like anything we can experience or imagine. The best we can do is to try to conjure what it might be like to be a bat, and in that task, we will always fail, given that imagining what it’s like to be a bat is not the same as being a bat. Even though Nagel’s article is really about the mind-body problem, it offers a great deal of instruction in alien phenomenology. On the one hand, phenomena are objective, often easily measured, recorded, or otherwise identified by some external observer. On the other hand, such an observer cannot have the experience that corresponds with those phenomena, no matter how much evidence he or she might collect from its event horizon. As tiny ontology demands, the character of the experience of something is not identical to the characterization of that experience by something else. Or as Nagel puts it, ‘I want to know what it’s like to be a bat for a bat. Yet, if I try to imagine this, I am restricted to the resources of my own mind, and those resources are inadequate to the task.’ Counterintuitive though it may seem, the characterization of experience through supposedly objective evidence and external mechanisms leads us farther from, not closer to, an understanding of the experience of an entity. The result is simple but profound: even if evidence from outside a thing offers clues to how it perceives, the experience of that perception remains withdrawn. This state of affairs poses a problem for modern science. Scientific discoveries have a magical flavor, offering lurid descriptions of how things ‘really’ work. And those magical discoveries may even describe some of the effects of object interactions. But to understand how something operates on its surroundings, or they on it, is not the same as understanding how that the other thing understands those operations.”150 Levinas recognizes that “if one could possess, grasp, and know the other, it would not be other...”151150  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 63.151  Levinas, Immanuel. Time and the Other. Pittsburgh: Duquesne University Press, 1990. 90.Grasping the apparatus of bats such as the effects of the frequencies they use has nothing to do with the understanding of what it is like to be a bat.152 The difference in mind between humans and animals is one of degree not of kind. Certainly, science has elucidated this already, but our senses influence our perception and our experience of the world. Understanding certain neuroscientific developments in other beings do not grant us the pretention of understanding how it is to be them. Through his experiment, Nagel’s goal was to develop an “objective phenomenology,”153 one that does not depend on imagination. He says: “Though presumably, it would not capture everything, (objective phenomenology’s) goal would be to describe, at least in part, the subjective character of experiences in a form comprehensible to beings incapable of having those experiences. We would have to develop such a phenomenology to describe the sonar experiences of bats, but it would also be possible to begin with humans. One might try, for example, to develop concepts that could be used to explain to a person blind from birth what it was like to see (…). The loose intermodal analogies – for example, ‘Red is like the sound of a trumpet’ – which crop up in 152  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 63.153  Ibid. 64.discussion of this subject are of little use. That should be clear to anyone who has both heard a trumpet and seen red. But structure features of perception might be more accessible to objective description, even though something would be left out.”154 Nagel indicates where his theory fails; something is always “left out”. Alien phenomenology accepts that the subjective character of experiences cannot be fully comprehended by other subjects. In the same way that the mirror was depicting a caricature of the reality in Chapter One, hearing a trumpet acts as a caricature to seeing red. It is a metaphor. “Anthropomorphizing helps us underscore the differences between ourselves and the objects around us – it helps remind us that object encounters are caricatures.”155 As Jane Bennett notes, “maybe it’s worth running the risks associated with anthropomorphizing (superstition, the divinization of nature, romanticism) because it, oddly enough, works against anthropocentricism: a chord is struck between person and thing, and I am no longer above or outside a nonhuman ‘environment’.”156 154  Nagel, Thomas. What Is It Like to Be a Bat? Durham: Duke University Press & Philosophical Review, 1974. 449.155  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 65.156  Bennett, Jane. Vibrant Matter: A Political Ecology of Things. Durham: Duke University Press, 2010. 120.106107Nagel calls bats “fundamentally alien”157 but every other thing is also fundamentally alien. To us and to each other. By revealing that things are alien to us and ungraspable, we release them from the prison of human experience.158 157  Nagel, Thomas. What Is It Like to Be a Bat? Durham: Duke University Press & Philosophical Review, 1974. 438.158  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 65.“Ontography might offer a low groan to startle us from the sleep of correlationism, but it doesn’t take things far enough.”159 Once we become “mesmerized by the objects in the world,”160 and the plurality of their being, how can we understand something about “interobject perception”? Lingi reaches to Merleau-Ponty and Heidegger to explain these negotiations. “Eye and Mind goes much further when Merleau-Ponty quotes painters saying that it is not I that looks at the trees, but the trees that look at me. There is no longer a duality of look in the general and visible world - and my look and my radius of seen things as particularizations of the general confrontation; there is overlapping and reversibility of vision with visible. As when Heidegger writes that it is not I that speaks, but that words speak, or Being speaks, in me. My eye as seeing power does not double up and superimpose upon itself my eye as a visible thing, but the visible field doubles up to inscribe itself upon that one chunk of itself which is my eye, making itself a vision on that visible. The visible organizes itself into a view, inscribes all of the visible, or some synopsis of it, on one of the visible - my eye.”161 159  Idem.160  Harman, Graham. Guerrilla Metaphysics: Phenomenology and the Carpentry of Things. Chicago: Open Court, 2005. 3.161  Lingis, Alphonso. Phenomenological Explanations. Leiden: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 1986.Harman agrees that things enter negotiations with other things as much as we do with them. If objects recede from one another, forever enclosed in their sealed sole existence, how do they ever relate to each other? Harman says that there is something that does not recede in objects, qualities that “sever” and allow us to “bathe in them at every moment.”162 “Objects float in a sensual ether. When they interact through vicarious causation, they do so only by the means they know internally but in relation to the qualities in which they ‘bathe’.”163   162  Harman, Graham. Guerrilla Metaphysics: Phenomenology and the Carpentry of Things. Chicago: Open Court, 2005. 150.163  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 66. 108109Harman equates such interaction to metaphors.164 As they are aliens to one another, “when one object caricatures another, the first grasps the second in abstract, enough for the one to make some sense of the other given its own internal properties.”165 The never-ending search of Nagel’s objective-non-distortive-tool being pointless to Harman, he accepts the ungraspable intricacies of the identity of other things and proposes a figure (of speech) that welcomes such distortion.166 Metaphors as a method of understanding interobject relations also open the possibility of attaining the stage of “metarealism, which is described as an earnest attempt to capture the realism of metaphor.”167 If we take Harman seriously in his attempt to define relations not just like metaphors but as metaphors, there is an opportunity to define object’s perception of one another as a metaphor itself, and that offers a critical way of characterizing objects perceptions.168 164  Harman, Graham. Guerrilla Metaphysics: Phenomenology and the Carpentry of Things. Chicago: Open Court, 2005. 98165  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 66.166  Idem.167  Idem.168  Ibid. 67.The problem lays in human involvement; human empiricism seems too present but in metaphorism, it is recognized that the human is removed from the relationship. Bogost explains: “the Husserlian epoché brackets human empirical intuition, but in metaphorism we recognize that our relationship to objects is not first-person; we are always once removed. It is not the objects’ perceptions that we characterize metaphoristically but the perception itself, which recedes just as any other object does. In doing so, we release the relation from a reduction between other objects, flattening it down onto the same ontological plane as human, (…).”169 169  Idem.The epoché method resembles the suspension of judgment170; it blocks biases and personal assumptions in order to explain a phenomenon in terms of its inherent system of meaning, while still relating to us. Metaphorism allows us to characterize, through the use of metaphors, the perception of another thing without having to position ourselves as a brick or a bat (like Louis Kahn and Thomas Nagel). “Once object relations become metaphorized, we must take care to avoid taking the constructed metaphor for the reality of the unit operation it traces. A metaphor is just a trope, not a copy. Consider how quickly a metaphorism can be taken for what it caricatures, particularly when matters of human controversy are at work.”171 Like Nagel’s bat, the experience of the building cannot be reduced to the operation of its constituent rooms or parts. To understand a particular apparatus’ experience, we can construct a metaphorism for it, based on evidence yielded from an analysis of its notes.172 Rather than ask how the bat fails to see what I see, let’s instead ask what characterizes its experience. To do so, we can trace the edges of the bat’s qualities. This offers evidence for how it sees but does 170  Descartes, René. Meditations on First Philosophy. Paris: Michallen Soly, 1641.171  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 72.172  Ibid. 68.not yet metaphorize the senses as an alien account of the bat’s own perception. As with any good metaphor, it feels alien: the human must wrap its brain around the idea that the eyes of the bat are relative to other things than the human eyes. Metaphorism pictures why and how objects ought to behave in relation to other objects and towards the universe. It is anthropomorphic, not anthropocentric, and thus challenges the limits of humanity without being centered around it.173 173  Ibid. 74.110111The relations among things are forces between actors and networks for Latour. ANT theory calls them quasi-objects and they are neither human or nonhuman.174 These forces pull networks and exert transformations as they have relations of power.175 “None of the actants mobilized to secure an alliance stops acting on its own behalf. They each carry on fermenting their own plots, forming their own groups, and serving other masters, wills, and functions.”176 There is no rightful owner to whom relations return: “one form of know-how is no more ‘true’ than another.”177 This also means that there is no becoming that can be deemed wrong.The actor-network theory is not a rejection of any correlation between things but the acknowledgment of infinite ones, “all self-absorbed, obsessed by givenness rather than by turpitude.”178 The forces are only metaphorisms, not true ethics of objects.174  Latour, Bruno. We Have Never Been Modern. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1993. 89.175  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 76.176  Latour, Bruno. The Pasteurization of France. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1993. 197177  Ibid. 227178  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 78.As Husserl, I agree that phenomenology seeks to expand experience. This investigation is in search of the things’ truth. It characterizes the inner secrets, the withdrawn subjectivities of various objects through speculation of their sensual interactions. “The moment we try to arrest a thing, we turn it into a world with edges and boundaries.”179 Metaphorism basically acts as an attempt to reconcile the being of one unit in terms of another but we oftentimes mistake it for its essence. 179  Ibid. 79.Exploiting this same idea, Duchamp, used the term “readymades” or found objects for certain art pieces. The bottle rack is the perfect example of metaphorism in my opinion. The galvanized bottle drier was bought by Duchamp for its unattractiveness. “My idea was to choose an object that wouldn’t attract me, either by its beauty or by its ugliness. To find a point of indifference in my looking at it, you see.”180 It was then placed in his studio to act as a sculpture and accumulate dust, not wet bottles as it was first intended. Duchamp wrote to his sister Suzanne, who was caring for his Parisian apartment: “you will see in my studio a bicycle wheel and a bottle rack. I had purchased these as a sculpture already made. And I have an idea concerning this said bottle rack. Listen. Here in New York, I bought some objects in the same vein and I treat them as readymade.”181 180  Bakewell, Joan. “Marcel Duchamp, Interview.” BBC TV, 1966. Accessed: https://www.revolvy.com/page/Marcel-Duchamp-%252D-interview?stype=videos&cmd=list&sml=_kto-dbcgbQ181  Tigner, Amanda. “Why Duchamp?: The Influence of Marcel Duchamp on Contemporary Architectural Theory and Practice.” 2019. Accessed: https://www.toutfait.com/why-duchamp-the-influence-of-marcel-duchamp-oncontemporary-architectural-theory-and-practice/Prior to receiving this letter, Suzanne saw the bottle rack as useless and disposed of it before Marcel could sign it as an art piece. Through the whole process, the thing, the bottle rack, remained unaltered. Only its relations to other things changed. Duchamp built tension between the object and its qualities and attributed functions. Each altering and distorting the last such that its sense rendered nonsense.182 He placed objects in new contexts and gave them a new meaning, an ulterior life. 182  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 84.112113From Duchamp’s Large Glass, a machine of loneliness, to his ready-mades, he constructs the opposite of a mass production machine for the production of mass. “Here the machines are tools for narration, not for industrialization. The apparatus includes scenarios of singularity, of anomaly, of ambivalence, and paradoxically, of melancholy, what Baudelaire called spleen in French. This machine could help us reconstruct Benjamin’s notion of aura through interwoven narrative parameters, its own uniqueness, and the internal contradictions of its own production. It’s an application tool, but it’s also a purveyor of rumors; the real function and behavior of the machine are impermanent and uncertain, which makes us doubt the principles and protocols of reality itself.”183 The object as metaphor alters its relation towards its universe. Duchamp accepts the ungraspable intricacies of the identity of the bottle drier and proposes new functions, new environments for it to thrive and welcome its distortion.183  Roche, François, Durandin, Benoît & Midal, Alexandra. Endlessnessless. Cambridge: The MIT Press & Perspecta. 2010. 158.114115Architects sometimes have a similar approach, they choose a form in the same way that Duchamp walks into a store and chooses a readymade. From Gehry to Hadid or Eisenmann, much contemporary architecture can be read as Architectural readymades. Some act as metaphors of other objects. Different in scale, materiality, function, and program but keeping some of the essence. The new object, the building, also behaves differently than the primal object, the inspiration, towards other objects and towards the universe. All things, themselves made up of myriad of things, exert their power over the objects around them, creating the push-pull relationship between viewer and artwork.184 184  Kerr, Dylan. “What Is Object-Oriented Ontology? A Quick-and-Dirty Guide to the Philosophical Movement Sweeping the Art World.” ArtSpace, 2016. Accessed: https://www.artspace.com/magazine/interviews_features/the_big_idea/a-guide-to-object-oriented-ontology-art-53690The pulling forces act on the primal network of the unit and speculate to materialized a new life for that unit. “Besides living legends such as Venturi and Gehry, younger, up and coming architects, are also interested in Duchampian ideas, specifically in the Architectural readymade. Thom Mayne, an American architect with an interest in the work of Frank Gehry and who practices under the name Morphosis, claims Duchamp as his idol. Morphosis tries to make every building an Architectural readymade.”185 Mayne says that he “treats materials, sanitary fittings, and bits of plan with innocent astonishment, that is, as objets trouvés.”186 The firm chooses its building components as Duchamp did, for their randomness. “Morphosis has made use of chance, of the Architectural readymade, in much the same way as Gehry.”187 Scott Brown and Venturi’s Learning from Las Vegas, a seminal work in postmodern architectural theory, uses metaphor to explain the state of architecture in America in the 1970s. The 185  Tigner, Amanda. “Why Duchamp?: The Influence of Marcel Duchamp on Contemporary Architectural Theory and Practice.” 2019. Accessed: https://www.toutfait.com/why-duchamp-the-influence-of-marcel-duchamp-oncontemporary-architectural-theory-and-practice/186  Kimm, Alice. “Morphosis Diamond in the Rough.” Architecture Week. 2000. Accessed: http://www.architectureweek.com/2000/0621/design_2-1.html187  Venturi, Robert & Scott Brown, Denise. Learning from Las Vegas. Cambridge: The MIT Press, 1977. 88.book’s dominant metaphor is that of the duck and the decorated shed. The duck, a building shaped like a duck, is a metaphor for buildings which are symbols.188 This is based on a real duck-shaped building, a restaurant specializing in roast duck, from God’s Own Junkyard.189 “A decorated shed, on the other hand, refers to any of the various average looking buildings by the highway which are heavily decorated with signs and logos, and more globally to any building covered with ornament.”190 188  Tigner, Amanda. “Why Duchamp?: The Influence of Marcel Duchamp on Contemporary Architectural Theory and Practice.” 2019. Accessed: https://www.toutfait.com/why-duchamp-the-influence-of-marcel-duchamp-oncontemporary-architectural-theory-and-practice/189  Venturi, Robert & Scott Brown, Denise. Learning from Las Vegas. Cambridge: The MIT Press, 1977. 89.190  Tigner, Amanda. “Why Duchamp?: The Influence of Marcel Duchamp on Contemporary Architectural Theory and Practice.” 2019. Accessed: https://www.toutfait.com/why-duchamp-the-influence-of-marcel-duchamp-oncontemporary-architectural-theory-and-practice/Within this framework, “Chartres Cathedral is a duck (though it is a decorated shed as well), while Renaissance buildings are all decorated sheds.”191  Sentences from Learning from Las Vegas, such as “Minimegastructures are mostly ducks,”192  show just how heavily the authors relied on metaphor.193 Venturi’s duck and decorated shed are Duchamp’s bottle rack in this respect. Scott Brown, Venturi, and Duchamp reject the seriousness prevalent in artistic and architectural circles (the international style) and use humor throughout their work. 191  Venturi, Robert & Scott Brown, Denise. Learning from Las Vegas. Cambridge: The MIT Press, 1977. 105-106192  Ibid. 160193  Tigner, Amanda. “Why Duchamp?: The Influence of Marcel Duchamp on Contemporary Architectural Theory and Practice.” 2019. Accessed: https://www.toutfait.com/why-duchamp-the-influence-of-marcel-duchamp-oncontemporary-architectural-theory-and-practice/116117“Marcel Duchamp has been quoted and acknowledged time and time again by contemporary architects and theorists particularly because of Duchampian ideas, such as eroticism as metaphor, his uses of new media, and his desire to move away from the retinal qualities of art towards an art which is at the service of the mind. Some writers and architects, including Sanford Kwinter, Shiro Kuramata, and Morphosis have at times misused Duchamp because his name is so en vogue. This has occurred by either invoking Duchamp’s name when no connection really exists or by paying a literal, retinal homage to one or more of Duchamp’s works. Many others, though, have incorporated Duchampian ideas into their own works in a more intellectually based homage. The Deconstructivists are indebted to his ideas about projection and chance, and Robert Venturi could not have made his playful jabs at the high seriousness of International Style architecture without Duchamp. Finally, the firm of Diller + Scofidio created a building which can be read as a truly Duchampian building, an embodiment of the infra-thin, playful performance and experiential art, and of a highly intellectualized eroticism. Though Duchamp was never an architect, his thinking has made possible deformed forms, has allowed Flip Wilson’s act to enter into the once sanctified realm of high art, and has allowed architects to literally erect buildings of clouds.”194 194  Tigner, Amanda. “Why Duchamp?: The Influence of Marcel Duchamp on Contemporary Architectural Theory and Practice.” 2019. Accessed: https://www.toutfait.com/why-duchamp-the-influence-of-marcel-duchamp-oncontemporary-architectural-theory-and-practice/118119The significance of their being-in-the-world might sound antithetical but through metaphorism195, the objects and buildings are just as humans196. 195  Bogost, Ian. “Alien Phenomenology.” Ian Bogost Blog. 2011. Accessed: http://bogost.com/blog/ 196  The navel and the primary home is the body, the memories, and the identity. The image of the self merges with the environment since we are in constant dialogue with our surroundings. It is impossible to delimit the identity of the self without the identity of the world. When the self confronts a work of art it projects emotions and feelings onto the work. A dialogue takes place; the self lends to the artwork emotions, while the work lends to the self its authority and aura. Eventually, we meet ourselves, and our own projections, in the work. Similarly, “during the design process, the architect gradually internalizes the landscape, the entire context, and the functional requirements as well as the conceived building: movement, balance, and scale are felt unconsciously through the body as tensions in the muscular system and in the positions of the skeleton and inner organs. As the work interacts with the body of the observer, the experience mirrors the bodily sensations of the maker. Consequently, architecture is communication from the body of the architect directly to the body of the person who encounters the work, perhaps centuries later.” (Pallasmaa, Juhani. The Eyes of the Skin: Architecture and the Senses. West Sussex: Wiley. 2012. 71.) World-view and perspectives are always constructed with significant elements of people’s social and physical setting, and usually, reflect the rhythms and constraints of their environment. (Tuan, Yi-Fu. Topophilia: a study of environmental perception, attitudes, and values. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall Inc. 1974. 79) People’s social and physical contexts build the architectural experience. “We behold, touch, listen and measure the world with our entire bodily existence, and the experiential world becomes organized and articulated around the center of the body.” (Pallasmaa, Juhani. The Eyes of the Skin: Architecture and the Senses. West Sussex: Wiley. 2012. 69). I stress that as “objects and buildings are just as humans”, humans are just as objects and buildings. As Harman points out, “The problem with modernist theory was not that it decontextualized art (and architecture) and made it too autonomous, but that it rooted autonomy in the features of the medium rather than the internal fascinations of content itself.”197197  Harman, Graham. “Graham Harman: Art Without Relations.” ArtReview. 2014. Accessed: https://artreview.com/features/september_2014_graham_harman_relations/120121Fig.25Fig.26122123Fig.27Fig.28124125Fig.29Fig.30126127Fig.31Fig.32128129Fig.33130131Why do we design buildings? For people? For self-expression? For a better environment? For money? For safety? Similarly as books “are printed and bound not to be read but merely to have been written,”198 perhaps buildings are designed not to be lived in but to have been built? This inquest aligns with the objectives of new materialism and the realization of our inner secrets in material form. Architecture, I believe, combines this quest for ontography through the use of metaphorism. “If a physician is someone who practices medicine, perhaps a metaphysician ought to be someone who practices ontology.”199 As Don Ihde puts it, “Without entering into the doing, the basic thrust and import of phenomenology is likely to be misunderstood at the least or missed at the most.”200 Things have various inner secrets, through speculative realism and metaphorism, some are materialized to achieve autopoiesis. As Todd Gannon said in an interview with Wash Magazine, we study and make 198  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 89.199  Ibid. 91.200  Ihde, Don. Experimental Phenomenology: An Introduction. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1986. 14.architecture inside of buildings. Architecture is not the building, it is something else. Just as literature cannot be reduced to books, architecture cannot be reduced to buildings. In fact, as Louis Kahn said, architecture does not exist, what exists is the spirit of Architecture.Reyner Banham put this well when he says, “What distinguishes architecture is not what is done…but how it is done.” Architecture has less to do with what an object is than with how an object is made and understood.201 OOO furthers that things have “unified realities - physical or otherwise - that cannot be reduced either downwards to their pieces or upwards to their effects.”202 201  Schleiff, Nelson. Liabilities, Todd Gannon Interview. Taliesin: Wash Magazine & The School of Architecture at Taliesin. 2019. 202  Harman, Graham. “Graham Harman: Art Without Relations.” ArtReview. 2014. Accessed: https://artreview.com/features/september_2014_graham_harman_relations/CarpentryAgainst the dominant strains of 20th-century phenomenology claiming that things are only real insofar as they are sensible to a human subject, “OOO asserts a radical and imaginative realism that not only claims that things do exist beyond the purview of human conception, but that this existence (defined by Harman as ‘nothing other than [the] confrontation of an experiencing real object with a sensual one’) is almost entirely inaccessible to our understanding.203 New materialism claims that all things are intrinsically equal. This is not only an ecological viewpoint on existence but a rejection of the idea that human specialness should dominate. As Harman writes, “The world is not the world as manifest to humans; to think a reality beyond our thinking is not nonsense, but obligatory.”204 203  Kerr, Dylan. “What Is Object-Oriented Ontology? A Quick-and-Dirty Guide to the Philosophical Movement Sweeping the Art World.” ArtSpace, 2016. Accessed: https://www.artspace.com/magazine/interviews_features/the_big_idea/a-guide-to-object-oriented-ontology-art-53690204  Harman, Graham. The Speculative Turn: Continental Materialism and Realism. Melbourne: Re.Press, 2011. 26.Bogost expresses that carpentry represents both knowledge and labor as alternatives for one another.205 It is practice and theory interweaving. This is how I see this thesis unfolding. Form finding through theoretical inquiries. Architecture is a practice of constructing artifacts just as a philosophical practice. Harman believes that the carpentry of things does more than putting theory into practice; it also represents practice as theory. Bogost furthers: “it’s not that writing cannot be interesting. Rather, we might consider that writing is not the only method of engendering interest. If we take vicarious causation seriously, if we believe that things never really interact with one another, but only fuse or connect in a locally conceptual fashion, then the only access any object has to any other is conceptual.”206 The carpenter, by contrast, must contend with not only concepts but with the material resistance of his or her chosen form, making the object itself become the philosophy.207 205  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 92.206  Ibid. 111.207  Ibid. 93.132133Despite philosophy’s traditional method’s successes in analyzing things, a more hands-on approach is necessary for architecture. “In the context of alien phenomenology, “carpentry” borrows from two sources. First, it extends the ordinary sense of woodcraft to any material whatsoever—to do carpentry is to make anything, but to make it in earnest, with one’s own hands, like a cabinetmaker. Second, it folds into this act of construction; Graham Harman’s philosophical sense of ‘the carpentry of things,’ an idea Harman borrowed in turn from Alphonso Lingis. Both Lingis and Harman use that phrase to refer to how things fashion one another and the world at large.208 Blending these two notions, carpentry entails making things that explain how things make their world. Like scientific experiments and engineering prototypes, the stuffs produced by carpentry are not mere accidents, waypoints on the way to something else. Instead, they are themselves earnest entries into philosophical discourse.”209 A phenomenologist performing carpentry will create a thing that attempts to replicate another 208  Lingis, Alphonso. The Community of Those Who Have Nothing in Common.  Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1994. 41 &Harman, Graham. Guerrilla Metaphysics: Phenomenology and the Carpentry of Things. Chicago: Open Court, 2005. 2, 72, 166.209  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 93.thing’s experience.210 On the counterpart, an alien phenomenologist performing carpentry will create a thing that attempts to capture and “characterize an experience it can never fully understand, offering a rendering satisfactory enough to allow the artifact’s operator to gain some insight into an alien thing’s experience.”211 In this regard, the alien carpenter experiments, designs and constructs artifacts that illustrate the perspectives of objects.212 These artifacts dwell on the outskirts of anthropocentrism and depict other objects’ experiences. And the results are not objective, or the best ones or the truer ones. They are and that is their truth. “In the real world, it is more important that a proposition be interesting than that it be true.”213 210  Ibid. 100.211  Idem.212  Ibid. 109.213  Meyer, Michael. Poetry: An Introduction. New York: Bedford Books, 2012. 8.What can be more interesting than novelty, wonder and perhaps the sublime? What new sensations and perceptions does it open in the things? Carpentry “suggests a breach in the membrane of awareness, a sudden opening in a man’s system of established and expected meanings.” 214 In architecture, it intersects science and art, knowledge and craft. Speculative realism as a method and carpentry as a means provide the best grounds for creative work to be done, and it provides genuine excitement to think that there are new argumentative realms to explore.215 Moreover, knowledge does not exist, despite all claims to the contrary, without craft, as craft holds the key to unlock knowledge.216 “For too long, being ‘radical’ in philosophy has meant writing and talking incessantly, theorizing ideas so big that they can never be concretized but only marked with threatening definite articles (…) Real radicals, (...), make things.”217 214  Parsons, Howard L. “Philosophy of Wonder” International Phenomenology Society, 1969. 85. Accessed: jstor.org/stable/2105923 215  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 132.216  Latour, Bruno. The Pasteurization of France. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1993. 218.217  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 110.134135Carpentry enables the production of things that explain how they, and other things, view the world. In doing so, they manifest their reality and the unfolding of new, unforeseen relations, capacities, and functions that the object might engage in.218 This practice talks to “the open-endedness of the relational conception of objects, already implied by Derrida when he critiqued the ‘metaphysics of presence,’ or Deleuze when he contrasted assemblages to organisms, or by Luhmann and Latour when they emphasized systems/networks as crucial to event/object individuation.219 I disagree with Latour when he claims that “there is no other way to define an actor than through its actions, and there is no other way to define an action but by asking what other actors are modified, transformed, perturbed, or created.”220 As overseen through the previous chapters, the inner secrets of things can be seen through diverse mechanisms. Latour’s definition “allows objects no surplus of reality beyond whatever they modify, transform, perturb, or create,” and likens this to the claim that no one is an 218  Schumacher, Patrick. Critique of Object-Oriented Architecture. Austin: The University of Texas at Austin. 2018. 71.219  Idem.220  Harman, Graham. Immaterialism: Objects and Social Theory. Cambridge: Polity Press, 2016. 10.architect unless they are currently building a house.221 Therefore surely, the action does not solely define identity. More so, this supposition implies that certain actions are identifying certain identities, which as we know is fairly hard to define as professions are in constant flux. Is the architect the one who drafts or the one who lays bricks? Are we still architects if we design through parametric softwares and algorithms? Are we architects -at all- if we design only in the digital world? 221  Schumacher, Patrick. Critique of Object-Oriented Architecture. Austin: The University of Texas at Austin. 2018. 71.Deuleuze offers insight in the dual relationship of the actual (the real) and the virtual (the possible). “The possible and the real are distinguished by the fact that one refers to the form of identity in the concept, whereas the other designates a pure multiplicity (…) which radically excludes the identical as a prior condition. To the extent that the possible is open to ‘realization’ it is understood as an image of the real, while the real is supposed to resemble the possible. Actualization breaks with resemblance as a process no less than it does with identity as a principle. In this sense, actualization or differentiation is always a genuine creation.222 In short, the actual is the form of identity and the virtual is its potential of being anything else. 222  Deleuze, Gilles, Différence et Répétition. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1968. 211-212.136137Adepts of the digital like Greg Lynn, François Roche and Mark Foster Gage bring carpentry to the digital realm by trying to achieve a complex “elegance” from a manipulation of the latest computer and communication techniques. “The supple surfaces, flowing vectors, and allusions to movement enabled through topological and animate modeling techniques point clearly to a novel sensuousness of form, an eroticism of plasticity awaiting some future critical encounter.”223 This was certainly the point of the exhibition Archeology of the Digital held at the CCA over a period of three years. It definitely showed the multiplicity of the virtual, the randomness and the inexhaustible possibilities of realization. Schumacher, who was taking part in the exhibition noted that the distinction between the virtual and the actual hinged on the surprising newness of actualized latent virtualities, as opposed to the realization of architecture from just a set preconceived possibilities.”224 He views the unexpected as an aspect of creativity and an opportunity for innovation, which is valuable, particularly in the avant-garde segment of our discipline, where novelty and innovation are desired both 223  Gage, Mark Foster. “Deus Ex Machina: From Semiology to the Elegance of Aesthetics.” Architectural Design. 2007. 198. Accessed: https://doi.org/10.1002/ad.401224  Schumacher, Patrick. Critique of Object-Oriented Architecture. Austin: The University of Texas at Austin. 2018. 80.by architects and their clients. But a design that offers such virtualities creates unexpected uses according to him. The answer for Schumacher is parametricism because it is the only architectural style that enables a richness of possibilities (in the real world) through a high degree of virtuality.225 Indeterminate devices, diagram routines, open-ended scripts are often strategies to define a set of conditions where architects can still be architects, where their specific knowledge still makes sense.226 225  Idem.226  Roche, François, Durandin, Benoît & Midal, Alexandra. Endlessnessless. Cambridge: The MIT Press & Perspecta. 2010. 158.Deleuze and Guattari talked about this strategy of resistance as a strategy of subjectivity. The subjective and the singular help them - and Schumacher - escape from the exclusive determinism of pure computational addiction.227 For Schumacher, architectural carpentry is resolved through parametric objects because they have more of what seems to count, namely virtuality. “My argument here relies on the intuition that the gaps that separate and isolate buildings from each other, making them ‘objects,’ are obstacles to the discovery and garnering of future network synergies.”228 227  Idem.228  Schumacher, Patrick. Critique of Object-Oriented Architecture. Austin: The University of Texas at Austin. 2018. 81.I disagree with Schumacher as I do not believe that objects with more complex structures stemming from multiple parametric softwares have more virtualities that offers greater access to metamorphism. As stated throughout this thesis, flat or dot ontology is dominant in OOO and that applies to all buildings, stemming from a parametric style or not. They surely offer different Deleuzian virtualities but not dependant on their carpentor’s software.Schumacher designs do not have more capacities of engagement into different assemblages, nor do they have more inner secrets than another designs. Complex structures derived from mathematical algorithm are not more prone to engage in various assemblages because they have multiple structural cables or bolts.Definitely, when it comes to the literalist architectural interpretation of Harman’s terms, we witness a hit-and-miss with respect to “operating as an effective architectural translation of the profound productive concept of the object as virtual that deserves to be injected into architecture.”229 229  Idem.138139“Most architects try to resist the notion of indeterminacy; they see it as a threat to the core business of the discipline, i.e. authorship and formal control over buildings. But reality escapes these architects: it’s no longer possible to rule over the building process in this way. So, in the last twenty-five years, avant-garde architects shifted their struggle against the establishment from the field of language to the field of operations, choosing to explore indeterminate processes, bottom-up techniques, open-ended devices, and interactive protocols. This triggered a conceptual shift that brought proliferation - rather than composition - to the foreground. But proliferation alone is not so interesting. More interesting are the parameters of selection, the conditions with which to negotiate multiples of variations. We all love “non-pedigree” architecture because it requires of us to make intelligent selections, although we hate it in its recent market-driven, global, generic, and repetitive expressions. One of the weaknesses of the “non-standard” approach to design (especially by the Americans) is its seeming lack of direction or, in other words, its search for novelty for its own sake, as an absolute value. It seems that many things produced in this way are simply consequences of technological possibility: answers in search of a question. These architects are like the flies in the bottle, producing large numbers of alternative solutions, waiting for something (critics, magazines, markets, clients) to select the next architectural “real thing.” It’s not so different than what happens in turbo-capitalistic developments in the East: I’ve heard that in Bangkok, they planned to build two different metro lines to serve the same area, waiting to see which one would survive...230 Roche, in spite of his very software-script-driven architecture, understands that the essence is not in the technique. The actual and the virtual merge and realize each other in their open-endedness. The metro line anecdote talks about the potential of the structure to evolve and be recognized through its fiction. It’s the state of becoming between the RO and the SO.231 230  Roche, François, Durandin, Benoît & Midal, Alexandra. Endlessnessless. Cambridge: The MIT Press & Perspecta. 2010. 158.231  From Harman’s Quadruple Object TheoryMassumi suggests that architecture “could be designed to make the ‘accidental’ a necessary part of the experience of looking at it or dwelling in it. The building would not be considered an end-form so much as a beginning of a new process. (…) Forms can be composed to operate as catalysts for perceptual events. A building can harbour foci of implicative vagueness, lucid blurs, dark shimmerings, not-quite things half-glimpsed like the passing of a shadow on the periphery of vision. (…) Architecture can accept as part of its aim the form-bound catalysis of the unform (the deform).232 In this sense, the architect forms objects that then unform in unexpected and various other ways. The object remains in a perpetual state of becoming as it contains both its realness and its virtuality.233 They are their own machine for production, as Deleuze puts it. There’s a genealogy of machines and machinations - from Duchamp to R&Sie(n).234 232  Massumi, Brian. “Sensing the Virtual, Building the Insensible.” Hypersurface Architecture. 1998. Accessed: https://www.brianmassumi.com/textes/Sensing%20the%20Virtual.pdf233  Deleuze, Gilles, Différence et Répétition. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1968. 211-212.234  Roche, François, Durandin, Benoît & Midal, Alexandra. Endlessnessless. Cambridge: The MIT Press & Perspecta. 2010. 158.140141“Form follows function was the dictum of High Modernism. (…) As our model of reality has become more layered and less concrete, art has moved increasingly into the realm of form follows fiction.”235Sadly, Schumacher and many parametricism fierce defenders use OOO in architecture as justification to create any building, of any kind and any form. The fact that they design buildings as objects devoid of context doesn’t substantiate a close relationship with New Materialism, as they often times misinterpret the beauty in perceiving the world of objects, as objects. There is magic in the things that surround us, and carpentry wants to put it before the world. Schumacher argues, in his critique of Object-Oriented Architecture, that an object’s capacity to surprise us, and its capacity in withholding more interesting truths correlates to seven factors. Size, spherical proportions, internal heterogeneity, porosity, strangeness, excess and contextual embeddedness are all conditions of the depth or capacity of withdrawal of things.236 It feels 235  Deitch, Jeffrey. “Form Follows Fiction.” Castello di Rivoli Museo d’Arte Contemporanea, Catalogue Charta, Milan. 2001. Accessed: http://www.deitch.com/about/curatorial/form-follows-fiction236  Schumacher, Patrick. Critique of Object-Oriented Architecture. Austin: The University of Texas at Austin. 2018. 82.very unnatural to claim that certain building or things are more successful than others if they follow this recipe. To me, this translates to a profoundly reductive understanding of the movement of OOO in philosophy and of carpentry as a craft. Maybe it is true that strange buildings and spaces deliver more virtuality than familiar buildings and spaces do, as Schumacher claims. Strange buildings and spaces withdraw from routine readings and engagements, and thus open up, and indeed force, inventive engagement.237 But Schumacher still thinks of buildings as withdrawing for us, humans, and engaging in different assemblages with their users solely. This is still a misunderstanding of the power that OOO holds. It has nothing more do with us than it has to do with dust.237  Ibid. 81.Harman recommends an equal treatment of human and non-human objects. As Gage underlines it, “for architects this was an important and empowering insight that had entered philosophical thought about and within architecture earlier via Foucault’s concept of discursive formations, where buildings and other equipment are revealed to have agency, even in individual ‘thought processes,’ not only in social processes.”238 238  Ibid. 89.142143Gage is a strong believer of the positive impacts of OOO in architecture. For Gage, that means a recognition that we understand or are even aware of an object, including a building, only when we don’t use it or when it breaks down, for otherwise it is just a tool we employ and thus dissolves into our application of it. This also means that the building coheres only in terms of aesthetics, which is to say, when we look at it and subject it to a form of judgment - otherwise, it falls apart into its materials, spaces, forms, and uses.239 His kitbashing theory is a response to OOO in architecture and he uses carpentry to achieve it. He creates objects from other objects in a way that objects could be perceiving each other. The new creations reveal some inner secrets and speak to a will or revisited identity of things. It is a speculation on the metamorphoses objects can go through. He furthers: “this elegance is a hybrid, not created from a ‘monoculture’ of one or another rendering technique or software, and goes beyond using a formal system or grid and collage to engage in a kind of ‘kitbashing’ (putting parts of different models sets together to make a hybrid) that produces continually mutating (at least, dare I say it, conceptually) and monstrous objects.”240 239  Betsky, Aaron. “Kitbashing Beauty.” Architect Magazine. 2018. Accessed: https://www.architectmagazine.com/design/kitbashing-beauty_o240  Idem.The monstrous-alien object reveal what Harman calls the inner “hidden depth” of the object. It grounds its reality, agency, and capacity to engage in new, perhaps even radically new and unexpected relations.241 The architectural practice of Gage is the design of sensual qualities in such a way as to suggest complex realities.242 Shifting to the use of “encrusted qualities”, one of the OOO synonyms for sensual qualities, Gage recommends “designing encrusted qualities towards the goal of inference via sense rather than truth via isolated, singular concept”.243 This would be “to imagine architecture that (...)alludes to a deeper or alternate view of reality”, one running counter to “the simplification of big, singular ideas through reductive diagrams”, a practice that Gage sees as plaguing architectural practice today.244 241  Schumacher, Patrick. Critique of Object-Oriented Architecture. Austin: The University of Texas at Austin. 2018. 79.242 Gage, Mark Foster. Killing Simplicity: Object-Oriented Philosophy in Architecture. New York: Log, 2015. 104.243 Ibid. 105.244 Ibid. 106.A new generation of architects - such as myself - is being energized by a direct association with realist philosopher Graham Harman. The reframed philosophical context of OOO challenges, in particular, “Deleuzian-cum-Schumacherian parametricism in which all parameters are constantly shifting, but ultimately known, interconnected, procedural and calculable, and offers the possibility of an architecture of less predictable experiential outcomes, rather than one of forced obedience to the social and communicatory scripts outlined by the architect. In such an (OOO) architecture, qualities are not necessarily all foreseen or traceable.”245 This kind of practice opens the door to positive explorations of productive ambiguities, multiple readings, and gestalt-switches.245  Gage, Mark Foster. “A Hospice for Parametricism.” Architectural Design, Rethinking Architecture’s Agenda for the 21st Century. 2016. Accessed: https://doi.org/10.1002/ad.2034144145Fig.34Fig.35146147Fig.36Fig.37148149Fig.38Fig.39150151Fig.40Fig.41152153Fig.42154155Bogost introduces wonder as a glue holding ontography, metaphorism and carpentry altogether. For Harman, wonder is a magnet that real objects use to call at one another through enticement and absorption. He writes that objects allure to each other without making their inner life directly present.246 “Wonder describes the particular attitude of allure that can exist between an object and the very concept of objects – say the intention of the carpenter.”247 This equates to the actual and the virtual of Deleuze’s theory.  If allure is “the separation between objects” -their virtualities-, then wonder is the separation between objects and allure itself.248 The Gelassenheit249 exists and the wonder appears when it materializes.246  Harman, Graham. “On Vicarious Causation.” Larval Subjects. 2010. Accessed: https://larvalsubjects.wordpress.com/2010/12/24/vicarious-causation-2/247  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 124.248  Idem.249  Heidegger refers to Gelassenheit as “the spirit of disponibilité” of things. Things can be whatever they may be in all uncertainty and mystery.Each thing remains alien to every other, operationally as well as physically. To wonder is to respect things as things in themselves.250 This suggests an astonished, worshipping attitude or a perplexity and puzzlement towards the thing.251 250  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 131.251  Ibid. 121.Conclusion-Both mystery and sublimity spark wonder which in turn catalyzes understanding.252 The posture one takes in front of the alien is that of curiosity, of wonder. Despite all the science fictional claims to the contrary, the alien is different. One does not ask the alien, “Do you come in peace?” but rather, “What am I to you?” “The return to speculative realism in metaphysics is also a return to wonder, wonder unburdened by pretense or deception. Let’s leave rigor to the dead.”253252  Plato. Theaetetus. 155d. Accessed: http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=plat.+theaet.+155d253  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 133.156157Just as drinking only champagne becomes monotonous, talking only about human behavior and scale in architecture becomes intellectually monotonous.254 The rise of objects need not be a revolution255, nor a war, at least not all the time. Because when things are at war with one another, the Soul of the World can hear the screams of the battle and no thing fails to suffer the consequences of everything under the sun.256 254  And like Slavoj Žižek, “I would prefer not to” engage in such topics in my thesis. (Quote from Žižek’s shirt, or from Bartleby, the Scrivener: A Story of Wall Street) This refers to the determinate negation of Hegel.255  The revolution is not just a rise of fists, but also a rise of bodies. Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 132-133.256  Re-interpreted from Coelho, Paul. The Alchemist. New York: Harper Torch, 1993. 140.ThingsThe Soul of the World is what Morton calls the ‘hyperobject’.257 A nonlocal, viscous presence so large that we cannot grasp them. One thing massively distributed in space-time258 such as the black hole Poplawski talked about or the ether previously mentionned. A dense mass of everything contained entirely. The universal thing in which all things recede to an “ethereal beyond”.259 To a certain measure, we as things, are seeing other things through the Soul of the World, through this hyperobject, this grand Thing. As things, we are in constant state of metamorphosis, shaping our being and becoming, and crafting fellow things. And we all forever withdraw into the inevitable spacetime hole. 257  Morton, Timothy. “Unsustaining.” World Picture Journal. 2011. Accessed: http://www.worldpicturejournal.com/WP_5/PDFs/Morton.pdf 258  Idem.259  Idem.158159Architecture needs a life vest to be rescued from both its obsession on research and concepts, as well as on its reliance on the production of pretty pictures. Architecture should be treated as a mode of knowledge. The classical philosophers said the soul never thinks without phantasm, which is to say that thought needs a material image, something to carry the thought. So, we begin to think of the imagination as bridging the gap between perception and understanding. What’s implied is that there is actually a space in the mind where the work of picturing takes place. The imagination is different from other mental processes like perceiving or remembering insofar as to perceive something requires that something has to be there. And that’s not required of the imagination. And even to remember something -the event or the object or the person- it had to have already been there in order to remember it. But the imagination creates its image. The image isn’t there until the imagination produces it. The imagination is also different from a concept because the imagination requires the materialization of thought. ArchitectureThe imagination is the third thing that operates in the space between the sense data and the perceptions of the building and the architectural understanding. The imagination is active. So we might say that the imagination organizes the sensuous manifold according to organizing principles that can be received by the understanding. And here we have the idea that architecture produces knowledge.260 260  Hays, K. Michael. “The Architectural Imagination.” Harvard GSD at edX. 2019. Accessed: https://courses.edx.org/courses/course-v1:HarvardX+GSD1x+2T2019/course/160161As Gage claims: contemporary architects “legitimizes everything from the sincere, though simplistic, architectural solutions that purport actually to solve ethnic or social disparity, to the aforementioned study of local zoning codes that is turned directly into a building. ‘Research architecture’ as a form of practice liberates designers from the need to design, allowing ‘design’ to be accomplished without the punishable evidence of the architect’s, or even human, will—and it can easily be heavily fortified with a regiment of diagrams, arrows, and icons, all masquerading as evidence of ‘pure,’ and therefore impenetrable, research.”261261  Gage, Mark Foster. In Defense of Design. New York: Log, 2009. 97.Architecture should encourage the “sensuousness of form, an eroticism of plasticity,” and the “ability to curate mutation,” “heralds the production of a new and entirely contemporary species of intelligence”.262 One not beholden to historical models of signification, such as the duck and the shed with Venturi263, but one “liberated and enabled by the ability to produce, control, and understand a crucial aspect of the judgment and consumption of architecture of irrefutable contemporaneity.”264 This intelligence inspires an OOO-architecture that creates wonder not for what it does but for what it is. Architecture is mutating from being a discipline of building toward one that is not only responsible for building but also defining how we, and other things perceive our collective reality.265 This is Object-Oriented Architecture.266262  Gage, Mark Foster. “Deus Ex Machina: From Semiology to the Elegance of Aesthetics.” Architectural Design. 2007. Accessed: https://doi.org/10.1002/ad.401263  Venturi, Robert & Scott Brown, Denise. Learning from Las Vegas. Cambridge: The MIT Press, 1977. 89.264  Gage, Mark Foster. “Deus Ex Machina: From Semiology to the Elegance of Aesthetics.” Architectural Design. 2007. Accessed: https://doi.org/10.1002/ad.401265  Gage, Mark Foster. Etiologies of Beauty: Architecture and the New Physics of Appearances. Cambridge: The MIT Press & Perspecta. 2008. 196.266  But I guess, we will know more when Graham Harman publishes his book “Is there an Object Oriented Architecture?” in February 2020.162163I developed a deep interest in the part-to-whole relationships of unit components rather than the methodic dissection of ontology. I also developed a sincere fascination in the emotive power of the thing. We can’t ignore the fact that we exist in a post-post modern world that’s experiencing a digital and technological renaissance; one where tectonic newness and programmatic efficiency dominate. Through curiosity more than resistance, I chose to dive in philosophical theories as a way of opening a dialogue about the state of architecture and more globally about how we perceive the world and how the world perceives us. I could have manipulated and dissected, or made sections of the objects to be analyzed, as a mad architect scientist, in the hopes of discovering their secrets.267 But I turned to philosophy because it acts as the meeting ground of professional philosophers like Heidegger, Derrida, Deleuze, and Harman and radical innovators like Marx, Guattari, Bogost, Luhmann, and Latour, who probe the first principles of all human reasoning and action from within their specialists domains.268 267  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 103.268  Schumacher, Patrick. Critique of Object-Oriented Architecture. Austin: The University of Texas at Austin. 2018. 80.PeopleIn no way am I claiming that non-human objects should be put in front, even if just for a moment, as that would signal “a coarse and sinful inhumanism”.269 OOO offers exactly the opposite opportunity. As Bryant puts it, OOO “allows for the possibility of a new sort of humanism,” in which, as Harman adds, “humans will be liberated from the crushing correlational system.”270 OOO rejects correlationism completely, or the habit we humans have of thinking about things only in terms of the effects they have on us. Schumacher seemed to be missing this point as he mostly stressed how things could have greater influence through shock. For OOO adherents, “this is a tragically limited worldview that at best precludes our ability to imagine the multiverse of beings, and at worst leads directly to the wanton environmental degradation we witness today. 269  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 132.270  Bryant, Levi. “Imbroglios of Objects.” Larval Subjects. 2009. Accessed: https://larvalsubjects.wordpress.com/2009/08/20/imbroglios-of-objects/The world according to OOO is one full of beings acting on one another according to their own goals and caprices, motivations that cannot be kenned by others.271 And the “carpentry of things,” one of Harman’s synonyms for object-oriented philosophy, might be a job description, not just a metaphor.272 271  Kerr, Dylan. “What Is Object-Oriented Ontology? A Quick-and-Dirty Guide to the Philosophical Movement Sweeping the Art World.” ArtSpace, 2016. Accessed: https://www.artspace.com/magazine/interviews_features/the_big_idea/a-guide-to-object-oriented-ontology-art-53690272  Bogost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. 109.164165Fig.43166167Bibliography-SourcesAllen, Stan & Meredith, Michael. 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New York: Verso, 2014.174175Fig.44Fig.45Annex176177buildingrow rowrowloggiaarch arch archarch archarch archwall wallflooredge edgeedge edgeedge edgeedge edgeedge edgeedge edgecorner cornercorner cornercorner cornercorner cornerwall wall ceilingrow rowdrawingdrawinghandmiddledrawing drawingringdrawing drawingthumbpencilindexdrawingpinkydrawing drawingbrick brick brick brickside faceculledgeedge edgeedge edgeedge edgeedge edgeedgevertex vertexvertex vertexvertex vertexvertexbed bed endbrick brick brickbrick brick brick brickbrick brick brick brickbrick brick brick brickedgeedgevertexarchFig.46178179particlebrickbedsideendfacecullarchvaultFig.47180181AcknowledgementsI would like to express my gratitude for the help I received during this thesis.For the institutional support:Eva Maria BuchHausBerlin, GermanyThe University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada For the academic inspiration and support in my architectural and philosophical inquiries:Dominic McIver Lopes,Sherry McKay,& Matthew Soules.For the transmitted knowledge and for instilling a desire to pursue in academia:David Theodore,Alberto Pérez Gomez,Ricardo L. Castro,& Bernard St-Denis.For the helpful review and critical thinking:Graham Harman, Anna Neimark,& Jill Stoner.Fig.48Book 2Fig.49Mount Analogue                 an Expedition         in OOO ArchitectureAn authentic narrative :To Father Sogol, With whom this expedition could not have been possible.He helped me realize I should never settle for anything less than the world presented in this book. To never settle for things as they are. But how they might and ought to be.190191Now, like you, in my studies and my practice, I had heard about a superior entity, possessing the keys to everything which is a mystery to us.1  Shouldn’t all my efforts be directed toward discovering it? 1  This idea of a higher and unknown strain within our universe is not something I could take simply as an allegory. Experience has proved, I told myself, that a man cannot reach truth directly, nor all by himself, if at all. An intermediary has to be present, a force still human in certain respects, yet transcending humanity in others. Somewhere on our Earth this superior form of being must exist, and not utterly out of our reach. And even if, in spite of my certainty, I were the victim of a monstrous illusion, I should lose nothing in the attempt. For, apart from this hope, all life lacked meaning for me. But where was I to look? Where could I begin? Why should I stake my life on this one quest? Preface-192193The very fact that there are now two of us: him and me, changes everything. The task doesn’t become twice as easy: after having been impossible, it has become possible.2  2  As he explained: it’s as if you first gave me, in order to measure the distance from a black hole to our location, one known point on the surface of the globe: you can’t make the calcula tion. Give me a second point and it becomes possible, for then I can construct the triangle. Perhaps even an isosceles one.Father Sogol3 had really convinced me, and while he was talking to me, I was prepared to follow him on his crazy expedi tion. 3  Indeed, his name is a rather childish anagram, and somewhat pretentious.194195Sogol’s glassesside view, these made him look like the Father of reasonSogol’s glassesfront viewFig.50Fig.51196197A nonlocal, viscous presence so large that we could not grasp it. One thing massively distributed in space-time. A dense mass of everything contained entirely. An alien operationally and physically. This is how he put it. We were after the universal Thing in which all things recede to an ethereal beyond.This expedition would attempt to scale the ultimate mountain - the one I propose to call Mount Analogue - for its inaccessi bility to ordinary human approaches.Supposition-198199Alienelevation, sketchFig.52200201Its architecture produces knowledge through imagination and perception. Its mystery and sublimity spark wonder which vicariously catalyzes our understanding.The expedition towards it opens the door to positive explorations of productive ambiguities, multiple readings, and gestalt-switches, he furthers. It prioritizes knowledge-seeking above human comprehension4 and architectural realization. 4  Now, Sinai, Meru, and Olympus have long since become what mountaineers call “cow pastures”; and even the highest peaks of the Himalayas are no longer considered inaccessible today. All these summits have therefore lost their analogical importance. I came back to the thought that Father Sogol’s enterprise was entirely reasonable. Reasonable perhaps, but sparking an astonished, worshipping attitude on my part, or maybe just perplexity and puzzlement towards the Thing. 202203Mount Analogue modelperspective, topography of the lower slopesMount Analogue modelperspective, topography of the lowest slopesFig.53Fig.54204205Mount Sinai modelfront view, topographyMount Meru modelfront view, topographyFig.55Fig.56206207Mount Olympus modelfront view, topographyMount Analogue modelfront view, topography and inaccessible summitFig.57Fig.58208209For a mountain to play the role of Mount Analogue, its summit must be inaccessible by means known up to now. Its base must be accessible to us, and its lower slopes must already be in habited by human beings similar to us, for it is the path which links our present human domain to higher spheres. Inhabited, and habitable. Characterized by a set of conditions including climate, flora and fauna, and cosmic influences of all sorts not too different from the environment of our own continents. Since the mountain itself is extremely high5, its base must be fairly broad. It must be unique and it must exist geographically. The path to the invisible must be visible. 5  To be exact: v2 = gh thus h = v2/g = kTmelting / gme ≈ (600 m/s)2 / (10 m/s2) ≈ 36 km210211Shipworm Woodside view, biocomposite of cellulose, lignin, and mollusca, collected on a riverbedShipworm Woodfront view, biocomposite of cellulose, lignin, and mollusca, collected on a riverbedFig.59Fig.60212213Petrified Woodfront view, biocomposite of cellulose, lignin, collected on the lower slopesPetrified Woodside view, biocomposite of cellulose, lignin, collected on the lower slopesFig.61Fig.62214215Alaria Esculentaside view, fragment of algae, collected in the wine dark seaAlaria Esculentaplan view, fragment of algae, collected in the wine dark seaFig.63Fig.64216217Paracentrotus Urchinside view, echinoidea, collected on the shoreBrain Coralside view, diploria, collected in a salt basinFig.65Fig.66218219Jack’s Beanstalk Seedsside view, collected seeds from the pathFound Toothside view, tooth collected next to the brain coralFig.67Fig.68220221Small Dendrite Plateside view, snowflake, collected in low altitudeSmall Dendrite Plateplan view, snowflake, collected in low altitudeFig.69Fig.70222223Big Dendrite Plateside view, snowflake, collected in medium altitudeBig Dendrite Plateplan view, snowflake, collected in medium altitudeFig.71Fig.72224225Delaunay Voronoi Ice Blockside view, volume collected on higher altitudesDelaunay Voronoi Ice Blockside view, volume collected on higher altitudesFig.73Fig.74226227Pelsite Rockside view, speaker pebble collected on the walking pathGneiss Rockside view, collected fragment of geological structure of the lowest slopesFig.75Fig.76228229Cloud Marble Rockside view, collected fragment of a pillarPink Basalt Rockside view, collected fragment of a residential tower’s roofFig.77Fig.78230231Tubular Construction Siteelevation of the Dutch East India Company’s construction site, sketchFig.79232233Light Panel Fragmentside view,  collected from a commercial tower’s windowLight Panel Fragmenttop view, collected from a commercial tower’s windowFig.80Fig.81234235Large Glass and Small Glass panelfront view, collected from a building envelopeCement's Friction Pores Panelside view, collected fragment of an enclosure systemFig.82Fig.83236237Cement Snap Fit Jointside view, collected joint from the tensile structureCement Snap Fit Joinedside view, collected joint from the tensile structureFig.84Fig.85238239Wall Assemblyside view, postfab EPS wall panel without enclosure collected on the construction siteWall Assemblyfront view, postfab EPS wall panel without enclosure collected on the construction siteFig.86Fig.87240241Wall Assemblyside view, postfab EPS wall panel without enclosure collected on the construction siteWall Assemblyback view, postfab EPS wall panel without enclosure collected on the construction siteFig.88Fig.89242243Visible Spectrum Cubeside view, dichroic glass collected in a light fixtureAnchor model for Tensile Structurefront view, cable attachment for rods at different levelFig.90Fig.91244245Encountered Entityelevation by Sogol, this entity reminded him of the anchor previously collectedAnchor for Tensile Structureaxon, plan and elevation, the anchor anchored itselfFig.92Fig.93246247Screwside view, collected on the construction sitePan Head Boltside view, collected on the construction siteFig.94Fig.95248249Four Side Fastenersfront view, fasterners for multiple connections, collected on the rods to the anchorSix Sides Fastenersfront view, fasterners for multiple connections, collected on the rods to the anchorFig.96Fig.97250251Many Sides Fastenersside view, fasterners for multiple connections, collected on the rods to the anchorTwelve Sides Fastenersfront view, fasterners for multiple connections, collected on the rods to the anchorFig.98Fig.99252253Social Housingelevation, sketchFig.100254255On high, remote in the sky, above and beyond suc cessive circles of increasingly lofty peaks buried under whiter and whiter snows, in a splendour the eye cannot look on, invisible through excess of light, rises the utter most pinnacle of Mount Analogue.256257Summithand-written poem by SogolFig.101258259Summit Speculationelevation, sketchFig.102260261Summit modelback view, volume speculationSummit model front view, volume speculationFig.103Fig.104262263Summit model side view, volume speculationSummit model side view, volume speculationFig.105Fig.106264265Summit model detail, volume speculationSummit model detail, volume speculationFig.107Fig.108266267Summit modeldetail, volume speculationSummit model detail, volume speculationFig.109Fig.110268269Summit modeldetail, volume speculationSummit modeldetail, volume speculationFig.111Fig.112270271Where is it?8 8  Now suppose that this invisible structure around the continent repels not only so-called material bodies but light rays as well. The explorers would walk or sail around it not only without touching it but without even seeing it. I imagine you know that a body does, in fact, exercise a repellant action of this kind on rays of light which pass close to it. (This fact, predicted by Ein stein, was verified by the astronomers Eddington and Crommelin on March 30, 1919, during a solar eclipse. They established that a star can be still visible even when, in relation to us, it has passed behind the solar disc.) But may there not exist unknown substances - unknown for this very reason in fact - capable of creating around them a much stronger curvature of space? It must be so, for it is the only possible explanation for our ignorance of the exist ence of Mount Analogue down to the present day. Somewhere on the Earth, there exists an area with a circumference of at least several thousand kilometers and out of which Mount Analogue rises. The substrata of this territory are com-posed of materials which have the property of inducing curvature in such a way that the region is encased in a “shell” of curved space. Where do these materials come from?9  9  Are they of extra-terrestrial origin? Do they come from the interior of the earth, a region of whose physical nature we know so little that geologists are reduced to admitting that no substance can exist there either in the solid or in the liquid or in the gaseous state? I don’t know, but we shall find out sooner or later when we are actually on the spot. I can further deduce that this shell cannot be completely closed; it must be open above in order to receive radiations of all kinds from the stars, rays essential to the life of ordinary men; it must also encompass a considerable portion of the earth’s mass, and doubtless opens towards its center for similar reasons.If we agree thus far, some questions remain: How has this territory thus far escaped the notice of explorers and travellers?6 6  The first question appears to be the most difficult to answer. How can it be that there exists on our earth a mountain higher than the highest peaks of the Himalayas and that no one has as yet observed it? However, we know, a priori, by virtue of the laws of analogy, that it must exist. To explain why no one has yet observed it, several hypotheses can be offered. First, it may be located on the continent of the South Pole, which is still little known. But by taking a map of the points already reached on this continent and calculating through a simple geo metrical construction the space which the human eye can embrace from these points, you can demonstrate that no elevation of more than 8000 meters could have gone unnoticed - no more in this region than in any other part of the planet.How does one gain access to it?7 7  The area we seek must be able to exist in any region whatsoever of the earth’s surface. Therefore we must examine under what con ditions it remains inaccessible not only to ships, airplanes, and other vehicles but even to eyesight. I mean that it could perfectly well exist, theoretically, in the middle of this table, without our having the least suspicion it was there.272273Curvature and Refractionelevation sketch, Mount between Earth and CosmosFig.113274275I made broken lines to show the path of light rays. You see that these directional lines spread out in the sky, where they rejoin the general space structure of our cosmos. This opening out must take place at so great an altitude - far greater than the depth of our atmosphere - that it would be no use trying to enter the “shell” over the top.10 10  This hypothesis is strongly supported by certain analogous considerations, and it is confirmed by the fact that it resolves another difficulty. Look back at my first drawing. You notice how the lines of curvature rise and spread out high up in space. But in that case, how could the sun send its rays down on the island from every point in its course? We are forced to the conclusion that the sun has the property of “uncurving” the space which surrounds the island. At sunrise and at sunset it must in some way penetrate the shell, and through that same breach, we shall enter!276277Curvature and Refractionplan-view sketch, Mount between Earth and CosmosABFig.114278279Remember that the immediate vicinity of Mount Analogue cannot present any noticeable spatial anomaly, since beings like ourselves must be able to exist there. It’s a matter of a closed ring of curvature11, spacious and impenetrable, which surrounds the country at a fixed distance with an invisible, intangible rampart. Because of it, everything takes place as if Mount Analogue did not exist.11  The curvature of space deflects the light from the stars and also the lines of force in the earth’s magnetic field so that I assume I am moving in a straight line. Everything is subject to the curvature and follow the contour deviation (A to B). In following the curvature of space, everything lengthens proportionately to the curve; its a matter of mathematics. The only admissible hypothesis is that the “shell of curvature” which surrounds it is not absolutely impenetrable - that is, not always, not everywhere, and not for everyone. At a certain moment and in a certain place, certain persons (those who know how and wish to do so) can enter. 280281To find a way of reaching the Mount, one must assume the possibility and even the necessity of reaching it.12 12  To avoid Meno’s Paradox.Crossing-282283Sogol took a few more days to put his calculations for entering the breach into final form. He calculated as follows. First he drew this parallel - between 50 and 52 of north latitude; it is the one which traverses the longest stretch of dry land. Now he drew in the meridian which crosses the longest stretch of dry land. It is located between 20 and 28 of east longitude.In any case the centre of gravity of the land masses must be moved considerably toward the South and perhaps a little toward the East to accomodate the planisphere tilt.284285Locationplan view, topography lines & water bodies600N550N[ 52000’00”N 28000’00”E] 500N450N250E200E150E 300E 350E 400EMercator projection N0                       50                     100                    150                   200km Fig.115286287We suppose that on a planisphere in relief we cut out the arrangement of land masses and suspend the whole globe from a string attached to a mat in this central quadrilateral. The gravity operates on the balls and activates subtle air movement influencing the table-robots which, in turn, trace, not without friction, some paths on paper by force of complex but random algorythms.288289Drawing Robotfront view, randomized patterns drawing robotGravitational Land Mass Devicefront view, string and mass indicate the planisphere tilt inclinationsFig.116Fig.117290291Table Drawing Robotfront view, perpetual motion drawing robotDrawing Robotsfront view, three randomized patterns drawing robotsFig.118Fig.119292293The robot experiment leads to the building of a more accurate table-machine13 from which, under the peculiar optical conditions of the continent, it would perform the standard measurements of parallaxes, angular distances, meridian passages, spectroscopy, and the like. Sogol reaches precise conclusions about the anomalies in cosmic perspective caused by the shell of curved space surrounding Mount Analogue. 13  The Table Machines act similarly to the Tableau Machine as they characterize future human activity through abstract art, on a surface.294295Failed Triangle Table Machineexploded axon, first prototype;  it explodedFailed Triangle Table Machineplan view and axon, first prototypeFig.120Fig.121296297Table Machineaxon, successful prototypeTable Machineplan view, successful prototype4.0010.0040.0045.006.00120.0025.0015.0090.003.00Fig.122Fig.123298299Table Machineside view, final prototypeTable Machinefront view, final prototypeFig.124Fig.125300301Table Machinedetail, final prototypeTable Machinedetail, final prototypeFig.126Fig.127302303Table Machinedetail, final prototypeTable Machinedetail, final prototypeFig.128Fig.129304305Table Machinedetail, final prototypeTable Machinedetail, final prototypeFig.130Fig.131306307The optimized machine ejects lines on paper that represents potential itineraries to access the inaccessible: the breach. After many calibrations, the plan of action is drawn. The privileged moment is determined. 308309Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.132Fig.133310311Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.134Fig.135312313Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.136Fig.137314315Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.138Fig.139316317Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.140Fig.141318319Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.142Fig.143320321Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.144Fig.145322323Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.146Fig.147324325Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.148Fig.149326327Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.150Fig.151328329Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.152Fig.153330331Machine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryMachine Drawingsketch, calibration & iteration of location and itineraryFig.154Fig.155332333Final Machine Drawingplan view, location and itinerary to reach Mount Analogue600N550N[ 52000’00”N 28000’00”E] 500N450N250E200E150E 300E 350E 400EMercator projection N0                       50                     100                    150                   200km Fig.156334335Long expectation of the unknown lessens the final effect of surprise. Here we are, settled only three days on the slopes of Mount Analogue.I do not know how to describe that impression of something at the same time quite extraordinary and entirely familiar, that giddy bewildering sensation of having been here before.Arrival-336337Summit and Brickshand-written poem by SogolFig.157338339Bricks Fallingaxon, bricks falling from a tall building onto the dellBrick plan view, brick visualization of the one we used as a benchFig.158Fig.159340341Cement Brickside view, brick from the dellCement Brickplan view, brick from the dellFig.160Fig.161342343Plastic Brickside view, brick from the dellPlastic Brickplan view, brick from the dellFig.162Fig.163344345Plastic Brickbottom view, brick from the dellPlastic Brickplan view, brick from the dellFig.164Fig.165346347Clay Bricksside view, bricks from the dellPlastic Brick and Clay Bricksside view, brick from the dell containing more bricks from the dellFig.166Fig.167348349A guard from the Mount questions us one after the other. Each one of his questions - all of them very simple - catch us completely off our guard and seem to probe our very insides. Who are you? Who am I? We cannot answer him. What does that mean? But who are you? And what are you? The words we utter are worthless, repugnant and grotesque as dead things. 350351All inhabitants, like the guard, have come from elsewhere, from the four corners of the world like ourselves, and each nation has its own colony. The curious geological structure of the continent gives it a wide variety of climates, and a three day journey brings you to the jungle in one direction, to glacial terrain in another, elsewhere to steppes or to sandy desert. 352353Climatesplan view, sketch of climate movement and locationFig.168354355Commercial Buildingselevation, sketchFig.169356357Inhabitants' Houseselevation, sketchFig.170358359Inhabitant House modelfront view, pitched roofInhabitant House modelfront view, flat roofFig.171Fig.172360361Inhabitant Houses modelfront view, sloped and pitched roofInhabitant House modelfront view, sloped roofFig.173Fig.174362363Inhabitant Fibre Shelter modelside view, model of an accomodation of the lowest slopesInhabitant Fibre Shelter modelfront view, model of an accomodation of the lowest slopesFig.175Fig.176364365Inhabitant Fibre Shelter modeldetail, model of an accomodation of the lowest slopesInhabitant Fibre Shelter modeldetail, model of an accomodation of the lowest slopesFig.177Fig.178366367Inhabitant Fibre Shelter modeldetail, model of an accomodation of the lowest slopesInhabitant Fibre Shelter modeldetail, model of an accomodation of the lowest slopesFig.179Fig.180368369Inhabitant Fibre Shelter modeldetail, model of an accomodation of the lowest slopesInhabitant Fibre Shelter modeldetail, model of an accomodation of the lowest slopesFig.181Fig.182370371Sogol would work with me, especially on the plastic arts, while con tinuing my enormous task of documentary sketching. This had assumed considerable importance for the expedition after the failure of all attempts of modelling14.I was also expected to sample and photograph all the materials gathered by my companion in order to further the in vestigations in symbolic process and theory, but without neglecting my principal responsibility of keeping the daily journal of the expedition.The journal was later shortened to this account you are reading.14  Of course, this could have been foreshadowed as Mount Analogue is not situated in Euclidian space.372373Expedition Bookside view, first edition, printed and boundFig.183374375Sogol was in charge of designing tools to help us in the ascencion. The robots and the table were few of his iterations on the trip. He also made us each a pair of shoes. They would enable us to dispense with spikes, which are dangerous at high altitudes because the straps bind the feet, reduce circula tion, and increase the chances of frostbite.376377Mountaineering Shoesplan view, my pair of shoes made by SogolMountaineering Shoesside view, my pair of shoes made by SogolFig.184Fig.185378379Mountaineering Shoesside view, my pair of shoes made by SogolMountaineering Shoesbottom view, my pair of shoes made by SogolFig.186Fig.187380381I remember one night when we were talking about mountain legends. I said it seemed to me that mountain ous regions were far less rich in fantastic legends than the sea or the great forests. “At high altitudes,” he said, “there’s no place for the fantastic, because reality itself is more marvellous than anything man could imagine”. 382383His eyes froze, he bent down and picked something up - something which shone like a tiny dewdrop. It was a peradam, a small one, but the first for any of us.A true crystal15 and - an extraordinary instance entirely unknown elsewhere on this planet - a curved crystal. Unique and singular as it revealed itself through a brilliant sparkle only to the person who sought it with sincerity and out of true need. He must have needed it to prove the existence of the true magic of mountains. 15  We were still puzzled by the formation and the root meaning of the word. It may mean, as he sees it, “harder than diamond”, as is very much the case, or else “father of diamond”. And some say that diamond is, in reality, the product of the disintegration of peradam by a sort of squaring of the circle or more exactly cubing of the sphere. Or else the word may mean “Adam’s stone”, and have had some secret and profound role in determining the nature of man. This stone is so perfectly transparent and its index of refraction so close to that of air in spite of the crystal’s great density, that the in experienced eye barely perceives it. 384385Sogol's Peradamaxon, shinning crystal, collected on the low slopesSogol's Peradamplan view, shinning crystal, collected on the low slopesFig.188Fig.189386387In that moment he was reborn and discovered his identity. His withdrawn essence was revealed in the peradam. It had sought him. And him it. As a last preparation, before going to bed, I care fully made a little vessel for my future peradam.388389Peradam’s Vesselplan view,  hand-made acrylic and harvested PETG boxPeradam’s Vesselside view,  hand-made acrylic and harvested PETG boxFig.190Fig.191390391Peradam’s Vesselbottom view,  hand-made acrylic and harvested PETG boxPeradam’s Vesselside view, hand-made acrylic and harvested PETG boxFig.192Fig.193392393My companion was as pensive as I was. After all, there was something mysterious about the ease with which we had landed on the continent of Mount Analogue; it still seemed certain that we had been expected.But we learned later that if we were able to approach Mount Analogue, it was because the invisible doors of that invisible country had been opened for us by those who guard them.Postface-394395End Poemhand-written by Véra DaumalFig.194396397I began to live when I found meaning.Fig.195

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