Professor in Residence, Department of Architecture, GSD, Harvard University, Cambridge MA, USA
This issue of TPJ demonstrates, once again, the value of our editorial policy of keeping an open issue every year, due to the variety of topics, perspectives, and cultural contexts that we are able to offer to our readers. And due to the multiple threads among articles, essays and reviews of this issue, as well as among themes and contributions featured in past issues.
We open with a guest-essay by distinguished author Botond Bognar, an expert on Japanese architecture, who provides us with a new critical assessment of a recent trend in Japanese architecture, with particular regard to Sou Fujimoto’s works and his most recent project for the House of Music in Budapest.
The Theory section is particularly rich, showing us how needed still are reflections on theoretical aspects of our fields, with contributions on a new interpretation of current urban dynamics (Newsom), on one of the founding ongoing questions of modernity, such as “transparency” (Gutai, Richards and Kafantaris), and on one of the “eternal” themes of architecture, the “wall” (Pinheiro). On the other hand, tectonic concerns, in a more current and technologically declined version, continues to be featured with an article on solar technology for envelope design in tall buildings (Kim).
The issue concludes with a series of contributions at the intersection of urbanism, landscape, ecology, post-COVID urban strategies, and urban revitalization (Dunnett, Munenzon and Gallagher, Huang, Dharwadker, and Ponsi and Templin).
In this issue we feature also a rich section of reviews and reports, that connect to the topics of the issue (Park and Koester on books exploring themes of tectonics and sustainability), as well as of past issues: Padoa Schioppa on a long overdue exhibition, at the MAXXI in Rome, on “gender matters” (see TPJ 4/2019, no. 2) and Carta on an international symposium, equally long overdue, on Carlo Aymonino’s legacy (see my review of his 2021 retrospective at the Milan Triennale on TPJ 6/2021, no. 1).
Altogether, these articles, essays and critical reviews encourage us to continue our ongoing quest for an architecture of modernity that leverages our ongoing technological advancements and innovation, without discarding the value of our past, and of the collective memory that have built of it, as well as new concerns for a more resilient, healthier, beautiful, and equitably accessible and envisioned environment.