Bullet point notes on the”New Politics of the Spectacle: “Bilbao” and the Global Imagination by Joan Ockman ”
make bullet point notes on the”New Politics of the Spectacle: “Bilbao” and the Global Imagination by Joan Ockman ” . i will upload the reading as PDF file. please don’t only do a summary on the reading, please be thoughtful and talks more how does the reading related on culture and ethic , and what’s the writer’s main focuses on this reading
Politics of the Spectacle: “Bilbao” and the Global Imagination
In 1997, virtually overnight, “Bilbao” appeared on the map (Figure 12.1). Frank Gehry’s dazzling design for a far-flung branch of the Guggenheim Museum was not just an extraordinarily audacious architectural achievement, nor was it merely another new destination for the art-world jet set and a global ego trip on the part of its ambitious New York director. The museum immediately became synonymous with an entire city and a symbol of regeneration for a troubled region of Spain. That a single building in a provincial locale could so capture the popular imagination -globally and locally, high brow and low -was one of the stunning architectural surprises of the fin de siecle. Had not postmodernism, in repudiating the hubris of modernism, consigned urban architecture to modest infill operations within the historical fabric of the city”! Had not the critical theorists of postmodernity written off spectacle buildings as the epiphenomena of a commodified culture and alienated social relationships? Finally, had not the digital world bypassed bricks and mortar, according built monuments the currency of dinosaur eggs?
Precisely two decades earlier, in 1977, the Centre Pompidou in Paris opened to a comparable hailstorm of public opinion. Like Bilbao, ‘Beaubourg,” designed by the Italian-British team of Renzo Piano and Richard Rodgers, represented a spectacular new redevelopment strategy for an obsolescent urban district. As at Bilbao, the architecture of the art museum was literally an act of exhibitionism, violating the rules of urban decorum and flaunting its own difference. It fetishized the ideologies of transparency, high technology and mass participation, dematerializing the brutalist “servant-served” poetics of Louis Kahn and, in the post-1968 atmosphere, hybridizing them with the populism of Cedric Price’s Fun Palace. Standing in the emblematic capital of Western art and culture, it presented itself as a kind of “empty center” much like the Eiffel Tower a hundred years earlier -a function and an event more than a place, a container waiting to be filled.? In the exorbitant critique of Jean Baudrillard, the building was a hyperarticulated and diabolical machine designed to suck masses of hapless spectators through its exposed guts into a “black hole” signifying the end of culture. Its erector-set