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Encyclopedia > Bernard Tschumi

Bernard Tschumi (born January 25, 1944 Lausanne, Switzerland) is an architect, writer, and educator. Born of French and Swiss parentage, he works and lives in New York and Paris. He studied in Paris and at ETH in Zurich, where he received his degree in architecture in 1969. Tschumi has taught at Portsmouth Polytechnic in Portsmouth, UK, the Architectural Association in London, the Institute for Architecture and Urban Studies in New York, Princeton University, the Cooper Union in New York and Columbia University where he was Dean of the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation from 1988 to 2003. Tschumi is a permanent U.S. resident. is the 25th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1944 (MCMXLIV) was a leap year starting on Saturday. ... Lausanne (pronounced ) is a city in the French-speaking part of Switzerland, situated on the shores of Lake Geneva (French: Lac Léman), and facing Évian-les-Bains (France) and with the Jura mountains to its north. ... An architect at his drawing board, 1893 An architect is a person who is involved in the planning, designing and oversight of a buildings construction. ... A writer is anyone who creates a written work, although the word more usually designates those who write creatively or professionally, or those who have written in many different forms. ... City flag City coat of arms Motto: Fluctuat nec mergitur (Latin: Tossed by the waves, she does not sink) The Eiffel Tower in Paris, as seen from the esplanade du Trocadéro. ... City flag City coat of arms Motto: Fluctuat nec mergitur (Latin: Tossed by the waves, she does not sink) The Eiffel Tower in Paris, as seen from the esplanade du Trocadéro. ... Eth (Ð, ð), also spelled edh or eð, is a letter used in Old English (Anglo-Saxon) and present-day Icelandic, and in Faroese language which call the letter edd. ... The University of Portsmouth is a British university in the city of Portsmouth, Hampshire. ... The Architectural Association (also known as AA School of Architecture) is the oldest independent school of architecture in the UK. It was founded by a group of dissatisfied young architects in 1847 to provide a self-directed, independent education at a time when there ws no formal training available. ... Princeton University is a private coeducational research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, in the United States of America. ... The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art is a privately funded college in Lower Manhattan of New York City. ... Columbia University is a private research university in the United States. ... Columbia University, legally known as Columbia University in the City of New York, and incorporated under the name Trustees of Columbia University in the City of New York, is an Ivy League university located in New York City. ... Motto: (Out Of Many, One) (traditional) In God We Trust (1956 to date) Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner Capital Washington D.C. Largest city New York City None at federal level (English de facto) Government Federal constitutional republic  - President George Walker Bush (R)  - Vice President Dick Cheney (R) Independence from...

A folly in the Parc de la Villette


Image File history File links Description: La Vilette in Paris Source: photographed in 1991 --Immanuel Giel 07:54, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC) File links The following pages link to this file: Parc de la Villette ... Image File history File links Description: La Vilette in Paris Source: photographed in 1991 --Immanuel Giel 07:54, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC) File links The following pages link to this file: Parc de la Villette ... Broadway Tower, Worcestershire, England The folly at Wimpole Hall, Cambridgeshire, England, built in the 1700s to resemble Gothic-era ruins In architecture, a folly is an extravagant, useless, or fanciful building, or a building that appears to be something other than what it is. ...



Throughout his career as an architect, theorist, and academic, Bernard Tschumi's work has reevaluated architecture's role in the practice of personal and political freedom. Since the 1970s, Tschumi has argued that there is no fixed relationship between architectural form and the events that take place within it. The ethical and political imperatives that inform his work emphasize the establishment of a proactive architecture which non-hierarchically engages balances of power through programmatic and spatial devices. In Tschumi's theory, architecture's role is not to express an extant social structure, but to function as a tool for questioning that structure and revising it.

The experience of the May 1968 uprisings and the activities of the Situationist International oriented Tschumi's approach to design studios and seminars he taught at the Architectural Association in London during the early 1970s. Within that pedagogical context he combined film and literary theory with architecture, expanding on the work of such thinkers as Roland Barthes and Michel Foucault, in order to reexamine architecture's responsibility in reinforcing unquestioned cultural narratives. A big influence on this work were the theories and structural diagramming by the Russian Cinematographer Sergei Eisenstein produced for his own films. Tschumi adapted Eisenstein's diagramatic methodology in his investigations to exploit the interstitial condition between the elements of which a system is made of: space, event, and movement (or acitivity). Best exemplified in his own words as, "the football player skates across the battlefield." In this simple statement he was highlighting the dislocation of orientation and any possibility of a singular reading; a common resultant of the post-structruralist project. A May 1968 poster: Be young and shut up, with stereotypical silhouette of General de Gaulle. ... The Situationist International (SI), an international political and artistic movement, originated in the Italian village of Cosio dArroscia on 28 July 1957 with the fusion of several extremely small artistic tendencies: the Lettrist International, the International movement for an imaginist Bauhaus, and the London Psychogeographical Association. ... Roland Barthes Roland Barthes (November 12, 1915 – March 25, 1980) (pronounced ) was a French literary critic, literary and social theorist, philosopher, and semiotician. ... Michel Foucault (IPA pronunciation: ) (October 15, 1926 – June 25, 1984) was a French philosopher and historian. ... Sergei Mikhailovich Eisenstein (Russian: Сергей Михайлович Эйзенштейн, Latvian: Sergejs Eizenšteins) (January 23, 1898 – February 11, 1948) was a revolutionary Soviet film director and film theorist noted in particular for his silent films Strike, Battleship Potemkin and Oktober. ...

This approach unfolded along two lines in his architectural practice: first, by exposing the conventionally defined connections between architectural sequences and the spaces, programs, and movement which produce and reiterate these sequences; and second, by inventing new associations between space and the events that 'take place' within it through processes of defamiliarization, de-structuring, superimposition, and cross programming.

Tschumi's work in the later 1970s was refined through courses he taught at the Architectural Association and projects such as The Screenplays (1977) and The Manhattan Transcripts (1981) and evolved from montage techniques taken from film and techniques of the nouveau roman. His use of event montage as a technique for the organization of program (systems of space, event, and movement, as well as visual and formal techniques) challenged the work other contemporary architects were conducting which focused on montage techniques as purely formal strategies. Tschumi's work responded as well to prevalent strands of contemporary architectural theory that had reached a point of closure, either through a misunderstanding of poststructuralist thought, or the failure of the liberal/leftist dream of successful political and cultural revolution. For example, Superstudio, one such branch of theoretically oriented architectural postmodernists, began to produce ironic, unrealizable projects such as the 1969 Continuous Monument project, which functioned as counter design and critique of the existing architecture culture, suggesting the end of architecture's capacity to effect change on an urban or cultural scale. Tschumi positioned his work to suggest alternatives to this endgame. Superstudio was an architecture firm, founded in 1966 in Florence, Italy by Adolfo Natalini and Cristiano Toraldo di Francia. ...


Tschumi's winning entry for the 1982 Parc de la Villette Competition in Paris became his first major public work and made possible an implementation of the design research and theory which had been rehearsed in The Manhattan Transcripts and The Screenplays. Landscaping, spatial and programmatic sequences in the park were used to produce sites of alternative social practice that challenged the expected use values usually reinforced by a large urban park in Paris. A folly in the Parc de la Villette The Parc de la Villette is a park in Paris at the outer edge of the 19th arrondissement, bordering Seine-Saint-Denis. ... City flag City coat of arms Motto: Fluctuat nec mergitur (Latin: Tossed by the waves, she does not sink) The Eiffel Tower in Paris, as seen from the esplanade du Trocadéro. ... Landscaping refers to any activity that modifies the visible features of an area of land, including but not limited to: living elements, such as flora or fauna; or what is commonly referred to as Gardening efforts in the gestalt, the art and craft of growing plants with a goal of...

Tschumi has continued this design agenda in a variety of competitions and built projects since 1983. The 1986 Tokyo National Theater and Opera House project continued the research that Tschumi began in The Manhattan Transcripts, importing notational techniques from experimental dance and musical scores, and using the design process itself to challenge habitual ways of thinking about space, in contrast to earlier static, two dimensional representational techniques which delineated the outline of a building but not the intensity of life within it. At a local scale in his 1990 Video Pavilion at Groningen, transparent walls and tilted floors produce an intense dislocation of the subject in relation to norms like wall, interior and exterior, and horizon. At the urban scale in such projects as the 1992 Le Fresnoy, Studio National des Arts Contemporains, in Tourcoing, France, and the 1995 architecture school at Marne la Vallee, France (both completed 1999), larger spaces challenge normative program sequence and accepted use. The Le Fresnoy complex accomplishes this by its use of the space between the roofs of existing buildings and an added, huge umbrella roof above them which creates an interstitial zone of program on ramps and catwalks. This zone is what Tschumi calls the in-between, a negation of pure form or style that had been practiced in the 1989 ZKM Karlsruhe competition project, where a large atrium space punctuated by encapsulated circulation and smaller program episodes developed a more local network of interstitial space.

The capacity of an overlap of programs to effect a reevaluation of architecture on an urban scale had also been tested in the 1988 Kansai Airport competition, Lausanne Bridge city, and 1989 Bibliotheque de France competition. In the Bibliotheque de France, a major aspect of the proposed scheme was a large public running track and sports facility on the roof of the complex, intersecting with upper floors of the library program so that neither the sports program nor the intellectual program could exist without an impact on the other. Satellite photo of Kansai Airport (lower-right island) in Osaka Bay. ...

With these projects Tschumi opposed the methods used by architects for centuries to geometrically evaluate facade and plan composition. In this way he suggested that habitual routines of daily life could be more effectively challenged by a full spectrum of design tactics ranging from shock to subterfuge: by regulating events, a more subtle and sophisticated regime of defamiliarizations was produced than by aesthetic and symbolic systems of shock. The extreme limit-conditions of architectural program became criteria to evaluate a building's capacity to function as a device capable of social organization.


Tschumi's critical understanding of architecture remains at the core of his practice today. By arguing that there is no space without event, he designs conditions for a reinvention of living, rather than repeating established aesthetic or symbolic conditions of design. Through these means architecture becomes a frame for "constructed situations," a notion informed by the theory, city mappings and urban designs of the Situationist International.

Responding to the absence of ethical structure and the disjunction between use, form, and social values by which he characterizes the postmodern condition, Tschumi's design research encourages a wide range of narratives and ambiences to emerge and to self organize. Although his conclusion is that no essentially meaningful relationship exists between a space and the events which occur within it, Tschumi nonetheless aligns his work with Foucault's notion that social structures should be evaluated not according to an apriori notion of good or evil but for their danger to each other. In this way, Tschumi's work is ethologically motivated, in the sense that Deleuze uses the term to propose an emergent ethics that depends on a reevaluation of self/identity and body. Freedom is thus defined by the enhanced range of capacity of this extended body/self in conjunction with an extended self awareness. By advocating recombinations of program, space, and cultural narrative, Tschumi asks the user to critically reinvent him/herself as a subject.

Alfred Lerner Hall
Alfred Lerner Hall

Image File history File links Lerner. ... Image File history File links Lerner. ...



A folly in the Parc de la Villette The Parc de la Villette is a park in Paris at the outer edge of the 19th arrondissement, bordering Seine-Saint-Denis. ... City flag City coat of arms Motto: Fluctuat nec mergitur (Latin: Tossed by the waves, she does not sink) The Eiffel Tower in Paris, as seen from the esplanade du Trocadéro. ... Alfred Lerner Hall, with Carman Hall rising in the background Alfred Lerner Hall is the student center or students union of Columbia University named for Al Lerner, who financed its construction. ... Columbia University is a private research university in the United States. ... New York, New York and NYC redirect here. ... Florida International University, commonly known as FIU, is a public research university with its main campus in University Park in metropolitan Miami, Florida, in the United States. ... This article is about the city in Florida. ... Official language(s) English Capital Tallahassee Largest city Jacksonville Largest metro area Miami Area  Ranked 22nd  - Total 65,795[1] sq mi (170,304[1] km²)  - Width 361 miles (582 km)  - Length 447 miles (721 km)  - % water 17. ... Vacheron Constantin logo Vacheron Constantin is a Swiss manufacturer of prestige watches and a brand of the Richemont group. ... Coat of arms of the Canton of Geneva Coat of arms of the City of Geneva Geneva (French: Genève, German: Genf, Italian: Ginevra, Romansh Genevra, Spanish: Ginebra) is the second-most populous city in Switzerland (after Zurich), located where Lake Geneva (French: Lac de Genève or Lac L... The University of Cincinnati is a state university located in Cincinnati, Ohio. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ...

In progress

  • Blue (condominium) at 105 Norfolk Street in the Lower East Side of New York City (due for completion in May 2007)
  • New Acropolis Museum, Athens, Greece (due to open late 2007)[1]
  • Concert Hall, Limoges, France (Opening early 2007)

Categories: Manhattan neighborhoods | Stub ... A museum by architect Bernard Tschumi located near the Acropolis in Athens, Greece. ...


  • Alesia, Archeo Museum, Dijon, France
  • Elliptic City: International Financial Center of the Americas, Guayacanes, Dominican Republic (completion after 2008)


"In America, it's more difficult because architects have lost a lot of power; power has fallen into the hands of the builders... the general strategy is determined by the client himself... That's a big problem. And that's what we want to avoid."

"Any relationship between a building and its users is one of violence, for any use means the intrusion of a human body into a given space, the intrusion of one order into another." Tschumi in Architecture and disjunction (2001, p.122).


  • Tschumi, Bernard:
    • Event-Cities series (Praxis), Cambridge, MIT Press, vol.1 (1994), vol.2 (2000), vol.3 (2005)
    • Architecture and Disjunction, Cambridge, MIT Press, 1994.
    • The Manhattan Transcripts, London, Academy Editions, 1994.
    • (with Todd Gannon, Laurie A. Gunzleman, Jeffrey Kipnis Damasus A. Winzen) Bernard Tschumi / Zenith De Rouen. Source Books in Architecture, New York, Princeton Architectural Press, 2003.
    • TSCHUMI, Universe Press, 2003.
    • Bernard Tschumi: Conversations with Enrique Walker, Monacelli Press, 2006.
  • Hollier, Denis. Against Architecture, Betsy Wing (trans.), Cambridge, MIT Press, 1989.
  • Deleuze, Gilles. Foucault, Sean Hand (trans.), Minneapolis, University of Minnesota Press, 1986.
  • Andreotti, Libero and Costa, Xavier. Situationists: Art, Politics, Urbanism, Barcelona, Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona, 1996
  • Sadler, Simon. The Situationist City, Cambridge, MIT Press, 1998.
  • Broadbent, Geoffrey. Deconstruction: A Student Guide, London, Academy Editions, 1991 [contains an interview with Tschumi about his early career].
  • Jormakka, Kari, "The most architectural thing", in Surrealism in Architecture, edited by Thomas Mical, London, Routledge, 2004.


External links

  • Official site
  • Review of T's design for Parc de la Villette

  Results from FactBites:
Ceramic Tiles of Italy - Stand CTI by Bernard Tschumi Architects (470 words)
Always on the cutting-edge of design and technology, the Italians have commissioned award-winning Bernard Tschumi Architects to use the latest Italian ceramic tiles to create a stunning new institutional exhibit at the center of the Italian Pavilion.
Over its nineteen-year history, Bernard Tschumi Architects has established itself as a leading architectural firm, with a repertoire of groundbreaking projects that include: the Parc de la Villette in Paris, the Rouen Concert Hall, the Center for Contemporary Arts at le Fresnoy in France, and the School of Architecture in Miami, Florida.
Tschumi's innovative design will also be seen at the satellite café/newsstand where attendees can stop for an Italian coffee and catch up on the latest news from Italy.
Parc de la Villette (615 words)
Bernard Tschumi's theories on architecture, developed in the 1970's through gallery installations, texts and "advertisements" (left) focused on contemporary society's disjunction between use, form and social values, rendering any relationship between the three to be both impossible and obsolete.
Tschumi was in charge of planning, in addition to the design of the follies, and superimposed three ordering systems: the points of the follies, the lines of the paths, and the planes of the sport areas.
The influence of the Constructivists is apparent in the formal qualities of the Parc and Tschumi's desire to upset the traditional aspects of architecture, though he is never explicit of this influence.
  More results at FactBites »



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