Sep 9, 2009


When we conjure up impressions, ideas, and images of the engineer, we tend to think of an ingenious individual and Promethean spirit who overcomes huge obstacles to realise the most daring constructions. The tallest, the biggest, the largest, are the records set by the great engineers. The Isambard Kingdom Brunels, the Gustave Eiffels, become the heroes in our transgressions of Nature. In the public mind the engineer turns into the supreme technological legislator--a hard person of science--who makes the impossible work. This romantic notion of the engineer conspires to keep art and science separate. Engineering as a catalyst to inspire a creativity is not the generally held view. But in the Greek word 'techne' the unity of engineer-architect describes a sharing of design values, the diagram and calculation, the concept and proportion being viewed as cycles of noetic invention ... A cycle of invention and post rationalisation runs from one start to another--and in between are the judgements and criticisms one makes. What remains constant is the motivation to keep entering that creative dialogue between architecture and engineering, and the writing of new stories.
cecil balmond, informal.

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