Archive for November, 2008

it smells like paris

After years of ‘reading’ the NYTimes style magazine, I recently decided I should actually read the words in the magazine, not just the graphics. This is how I stumbled upon the beautifully descriptive perfume reviews which made me immediately wish I had loads money to spend. Not surprsingly, perfumes are more intricate than smelling good or bad and much more nuanced than smelling like roses, apples, or old wood.

Some quotes from a recent NYT Style Magazine review:

Chanel No. 18 is a conceptual portrait of Paris. And a beautiful one….I cannot stress the degree to which No. 18 is a brilliantly postmodern perfume..No. 18 smells as if the perfumers had captured a flower, but a flower whose perfume somehow exudes from spotless glass jewlery counters and warm, burnished stone
is the jaw-dropping incarnation of mid-century Paris … it is astouding because [it] captures the quintessence of the 16th Arrondissment women in full battle regalia (heels, scarfs, blouse, jewels, jakcet)..also becuase of its starling modernity.
(NYT Winter 2008 Women’s Fashion)

What a conceptual portrait of Paris or postmodern scent smells like is completely beyond me, but it’s still intriguing. As little as I understand perfumes or smells, I think (at least for me) it is the strongest memory trigger, much more than any song or visual. When I smell cut grass in the fall, I can feel myself lying on the cold field on a Friday afternoon after practice doing our bizarre, disorganized pre-game ritual with Myers. Or that not-so-great smell of public school cafeterias makes me taste two plates rice and beans (best meal in the new york public school lunch system). My point is that unlike sounds, songs, or images that remind me of a memory, smell makes me relive that tactile feeling of a memory however briefly.

21 units of studio

a typical class at mit : 12 units.
architecture studio this semester and onwards: 21 units

originally [and currently] the raison d’etre* of this blog for me was to document my process of design and to present my projects throughout the process in a more or less cohesive way. ideally, posting would be motivation for me to push forward and produce rather than sit and mull which is my natural state of being. also, having to explain my idea should hopefully help me be more eloquent and less rambling come review time.

beyond studio, my lofty goal is for the blog will become a documentation of all my work as well as the images, designs, quotes, food, people, anything that intrigues, amuses, and inspires me along the way.

*did i use raison d’etre completely incorrectly

ongoing: architecture jargon magnetic poetry project (ajmpp)

earlier this semester at an Course 4 Resource Council meeting (aka 4RC=ma), someone, probably Bill McKenna, said “wouldn’t it be hilarious if they made magnetic poetry out of architecture words that everyone uses by no one understands like ‘fabric’ or ‘juxtapose?’ since then, a few of us have decided that it would indeed be hilarious and started compiling a list of jargon that make you think ‘damn, I don’t know a thing about architecture’

anyway, the end goal is for us to be able to string together sentences like:
the concept of city as cellular is the anti-idea of CIAM‘s socialist discourse on urbanism which in practice is quite disturbing.

little substance, a lot of jargon, you get the idea.

oh, and we will customize it to MIT with words like AVT, RPL, Meejin etc.

the words will all be printed in the helvetica font, so pre-order now and we will send it sometime before I graduate. maybe.

nov. 4


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