ARC 331 Forum 04: Early Modernist Architectural Critique of the Hôtel Van Eetvelde

Is this a good building?

27 Comments

  1. Reply
    Diana Romero- De Stijl March 18, 2019

    The Van Eetvelde House is too complicated and organic to be considered a good building. Specially because of the amount of curves, and organic shapes it becomes too defines when it would be better for it to be more abstract. For this building to be a good building should define spaces and function with rectangular shapes, vertical and horizontal lines to define functions as well. Then the color of this building is too monochromatic, primary colors would be the best option to make the important spaces have hierarchy.

    • Reply
      Elizabeth Van Bruggen, A De Stijl Perspective March 20, 2019

      I agree! This building has way to many curves. Straight lines and planes are the way to go. Even the form of the building in the space between other buildings is just not working. The Van Eetvelde House needs room to express a more neo-plastic style, free from these curves and organic forms. You are right too that some new and simplified color would definitely benefit this design as a whole as well.

    • Reply
      jacob collins - Futurist March 20, 2019

      I agree that the building is too curvy, but i don’t think that the color is what would make this building a bad building. I think that this building needs to express the natural raw material that it is made of and that will help define the spaces

    • Reply
      Brooke, de Stijl March 20, 2019

      This house may be all rectilinear in its general form, but it goes way off the grid (haha get because a grid is made up of rectangles?) in its decor. The lines have no straight segments at all. The colors of the house too have become muddled from mixing pure hues. They should have left the their cream colors either white or yellow!

    • Reply
      Universitair Hoofddocent March 27, 2019

      Diana, It is horrible. What a waste, to use such a palette of materials, capable of hovering and thinness and lightness, and to cast them into this traditional, boring pile that shows so much of its architect’s personal taste. The nerve of him!

  2. Reply
    Adamoof Wiseoof - DADA oof March 18, 2019

    DADA: The manifestations of the archicurves support the fantaculaculous notion of techtonicas dada as articulated in the Dada mhmm da manual of arts and crafts nouveau. Oh, owe, ow, dadao, dow, dada. Narbacular influences dada and, as such, influences da schwooop. As we all simultaneously affirm and individually decry, swoop da doop, stenciled-in loop, ooooof. Victoof Hortoof, letoof usoof downoof. Windowy droop, plooop, Atrohoop Rotcivoop. Within apocalyptic notational end, dada oof oof dadoooof.

    • Reply
      Chloe Burkhart, Dada ᵒᵒᶠ March 19, 2019

      ———-Oooo—
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      ——\_)-
      ———–Oooo—
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      ʸᵉˢ
      too repeat curve, why? Reasons. For real reasons. Not good! No. HAHA…… ok calm now but ? Lady who birthed me said “Horta created beautiful things.” I say NO, Horta hears a who.

    • Reply
      Emma Okesson March 20, 2019

      mhmm articulated techtonicas dada Atrohoop influences da notational of fantaculaculos apocalyptic droop Windowy dada plooop Rotcivoop notion doop the Victoof the individually da stenciled-in As dada affirm ooooof manifestations all of owe and oof nouveau swoop decry Oh downoof ow within the dow archicurves influences of schwooop end dadoooof and support such Hortoof in as the crafts simultaneously dada dadao manual as DADA arts letoof da Dada Narbacular usoof oof and loop we.

    • Reply
      Desmond Wahlfeld, Futurist March 20, 2019

      *sigh* Adam, you’ve fallen into madness, my dear friend. Archicurves, swoops, and loops, these are not the things of the future, we needn’t snake around things anymore, but rather blaze straight forward with speed and practicality. Your swoops and loops only work to delay to the inevitable end, I say we obliterate the unnecessary decoration and rather blaze forth into the oblique and elliptic for this is truly superior this my friend is the future.

      • Reply
        Adam Wise 00f - DADA March 22, 2019

        Oofy doofy, the above comment is goofy. The oof dada future possesses the future only until it rides into the sunset. It only serves to appetize the whiploosh, son of whiplash. Future furniture funhouse. Sutures, structure, satchels, snitches.

    • Reply
      mauve March 27, 2019

      eat your chocolate
      wash your brain
      dada
      dada
      gulp some rain

  3. Reply
    Parker the Expressionist March 18, 2019

    As an Expressionist, I would consider the Hôtel Van Eetvelde a good building for some very specific reasons. Seeing this building as a distortion of reality, the interior does not align with the expectations presumed from the façade of the building. Except for some expressive ornamental features, the building appears to be a typical townhouse from the exterior. This reality is distorted upon entering the building with the presence of an atypical floor plan surrounding a glass atrium.

    • Reply
      Diana P Romero- De Stijl March 20, 2019

      Why to distort reality if not many can understand it?. It would make more sense to create something to simplifies function by using straight lines. I agree that the interior does not align with the language of the facade, but for this same reason this building needs a more universal design.

      • Reply
        Parker Done- Expressionist March 23, 2019

        Universal design detracts from the user experience. The uniqueness is what contributes to the artistry of the design.

        • Reply
          Diana P Romero March 25, 2019

          User experience that can be confusing? Nothing is as clear and concise as a a straight line and primary colors!

    • Reply
      Frau Doktor Sparkle-Farben March 27, 2019

      Parker, you are right! Buildings are about the experience! A very emotional experience! That improves us all! Although I admire this architect’s use of skylights inside this house, the exterior is so emotionless! Outside of the applied ornament! And I get nothing from the metal! No feeling at all!!!

  4. Reply
    David Filipowski - Russian Constructivist March 18, 2019

    At an initial glance, this building’s ornament is not only unnecessary but simply useless. Why must there be such an expression of organic lines in the second dimension. They do not serve any purpose for this structure or add to its strength or integrity, nor do they allow me to identify any legible or pure composition. Although I can appreciate the industrial clarity of the main stairwell, that does not outweigh the hideously opulent comfort of this building’s inhabitants.

    • Reply
      Andrew Rogers [Russian Constructivist] March 19, 2019

      David, my friend, I appreciate that we share the same ideas on the buildings ornament. Just looking at this building makes me question the the reasons architects find it important and significant to add this ornament. We want to see the real material in its raw state.

    • Reply
      jacob collins - Futurist March 20, 2019

      I agree with your thoughts on the raw state of materials as well as this building has too much ornament. I think that this building should try to be unique instead of attempting to blend in and conform to a small movement.

    • Reply
      Parker Done, Expressionist March 21, 2019

      You two are missing the whole point of architectural design. It is more than just the material and functionality of the building. You must consider the human experience. The architect here successfully provided a unique experience for the user by distorting preconceived notions about architecture.

      • Reply
        Andrew Rogers [Russian Constructivist] March 21, 2019

        You say we are “missing the point” and then go on to say that we need to consider the human experience. David and I are saying what we are saying because we have the people held at the most importance. The designs of the builds are too help the user experience by keeping it to the true forms.

        • Reply
          Parker Done- Expressionist March 23, 2019

          You make a good point and I respect your vision but the human element should add interest to forms, not limit them.

    • Reply
      профессор March 27, 2019

      Comrade David, the ornament IS hideous. the organicism IS horrible. the use of industry in place of traditional materials IS ridiculous. One might find a slight sense of constructive assemblage, if one could cease from being distracted by the sound of one’s own retching.

  5. Reply
    jacob collins- Futurist March 19, 2019

    as a futurist, this building at first glance the Hotel Van Eetvelde is not a completely horrible building, it has large windows on the exterior which are good. The reason that this building is not completely good is because there are too many curves as well as it hash some resemblance to the types of buildings from the past, it takes too much into account for historical precedents and this is something that should not be looked into as much.

    • Reply
      Diana P Romero- De Stijl March 20, 2019

      I agree with your opinion on the unnecessary amount of curves. A more simplified design would be more efficient. In addition to that, it should not only get rid of its curves but also to add primary colors to it. Pure abstract architecture can also depict dynamism without the need of all this exaggerated organic shapes.

    • Reply
      Parker Done, Expressionist March 21, 2019

      I too am not terribly thrilled about the slight resemblance to a traditional building in its exterior form, although the Horta was very distinct in his expressive ornament. I would argue though that the curvatures are necessary in providing a unique experience in this building.

    • Reply
      Dottore Architetto March 27, 2019

      Jacob, It is also wanting in its old-fashioned use of industrial materials, using outmoded post and lintel with no sense of dynamic action outside of the twee ornament that is too individual and personal for us Futurists.

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