27 : Sex and Architecture with Richard Williams

27 : Sex and Architecture with Richard Williams

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“The kind of images of modernism that appear in the journals, the things that are circulated, still are oddly deracinated. They are devoid of life. They are devoid of bodies, really.”

This week, we talk to Richard Williams about sex, Mad Men, James Bond and of course, architecture. Richard is a Professor of Contemporary Visual Cultures at The University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh College of Art where he heads the History of Art subject area. Don’t miss this candid discussion of all things sexy in the contemporary built world.

Timestamp Outline

2:00 Book: Sex and Buildings: Modern Architecture and the Sexual Revolution by Richard Williams
3:24 Esther Perel
4:30 Why is architectural theory still so coy about sex and buildings?
5:26 Zaha Hadid’s sexy interiors: 520 W 28th Highline apartments, Puerta America Madrid hotel
7:37 Queer and feminist theory engaged with discussions of sexuality and space [reading list]
12:30 Books: Sexuality and Space edited by Beatriz Colomina and Pornotopia: An Essay on Playboy's Architecture and Biopolitics by Paul Beatriz Preciado
13:08 Is modernism puritanical?
13:38 Adolf Loos: his own bedroom vs voyeuristic house for Josephine Baker
14:36 “The way that it’s photographed, the kind of images of modernism that appear in the journals, the things that are circulated, still are oddly deracinated. They are devoid of life. They are devoid of bodies, really. It’s very hard to find buildings that are used or inhabited or lived...In the way that those buildings are taught and the way those images are circulated - it’s something that represses the body.”
16:10 Victorian suppression continuing into modern ethos
16:30 Corbusier’s Villa Savoye
17:28 19th century city spatial organization and repression
18:07 Victoria and Albert Museum: sexuality in ornament
18:40 Transparency: control vs voyeurism as sexual affects
21:45 Californian mid century modernism
22:16 Drop City commune
25:21 Free festival movement in Britain, Stonehenge
27:30 West Coast attitude: Led Zeppelin, Bay area, LA, communal living areas vs more buttoned-up East Coast
28:50 London squatter culture: physical toughness required to survive
31:10 1990s post-HIV fear-ridden climate and puritanical culture
32:00 On the Mad Men TV series: “The interior architecture beautifully done - the way it described a landscape of the incredibly rigid divisions between male and female, power relations, and how people transgressed those boundaries.”
34:42 Sexualized space of glass in modern interiors: Mies office spaces
37:15 Freud’s symbols of masculinity: pipes, cars, etc.
38:12 Sex and the Single Girl advice manual
43:40 Sex and sexuality a universal issue
47:52 Dolores Hayden’s work on cohousing and the nuclear family
50:11 Love Hotels in Tokyo: sites of alternative sexual socialites
51:15 Niemeyer, his sketches, and a normative sexuality and architecture
54:07 Louis Kahn and My Architect; Howard Rourke from The Fountainhead
55:54 Architecture and Feminisms conference in Stockholm
57:20 Art historians vs architectural historians
59:21 James Bond: Scheats-Goldstein House, Elrod House
1:01:47 Ian Fleming’s book Goldfinger villain based on the architect Goldfinger
1:02:38 Star Wars empire and villains with exquisite modern architecture
1:04:20 Venice Biennale like a Bond film

28 : Cinema, New Media and Architecture with Yomi Braester

28 : Cinema, New Media and Architecture with Yomi Braester

26. World History, Global History, Architecture with Anand Yang

26. World History, Global History, Architecture with Anand Yang