October 22, 2014

Response 03.

Depending on how free one chooses to interpret the meaning of containers, everything could be a container or be contained: the front cover of a book, the cabinet, the purse, the cover of a CD etc.. In most cases the purpose of that kind of containers are to hold and protect whats in it. But the most fundamental (at least in the evenings and during the night) are perhaps our homes. It protects us from what’s outside.

Or does it? Does it really protect us? Or does the walls prevent outside forces and movement to integrate with us? In other words – how do the way architects design our homes effect how we live our lives? I remember reading somewhere that in the history the kitchen normally were smaller than the livingroom, and in an attempt to strengthen womens position in their homes, some architect instead designed the kitchen to be larger than the livingroom (since traditionally women’s position were in the kitchen, and men’s in the livingroom). Even though this attempt maybe actally just strengthened the stereotypical genderroles rahter than womens, it was an attempt to change structures through design.

It is against my belief that architect’s can and should control what kind of life that occurs in/around their work, I think that that gives too much power to the architectural profession alone. After all, they are in most cases not the one’s that will inhabit what they are designing. Sofia wrote that when we fill a container we pour into its emptiness. An empty jug has no purpose, other than to look good (?). A home doesen’t furfill it’s purpose until it’s filled with life, and if the architect is the expert on how to create that kind of ”container”, isn’t the dweller the expert on what’s it going to be filled with?


Plan from late 1940s.

/ Sofi

One Response to “Containers”

  1. samposong Says:

    Container is an important term that I haven’t thought it with gender. As you mentioned that the size of kitchen was related with the role of gender, which partly I agreed with it.
    For my point of view of the floor plan, each part of room was designed by functional reason too. For example, dwellers use more living room than kitchen.
    I also agree with the point that architectural profession has too much power. What i understand about the point is that an architect should carefully design, even designing a small size of building and door handle. At the same time, an architect should be humble about the design, because a dweller will make their own memory with the building.

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