The Measure of the West: A Representation of Travel
DescriptionIn 1984, Giovanni Chiaramonte photographed Alvaro Siza's building in Berlin, on whose facade some young people had written Bonjour Tristesse. The image was published on the cover of the magazine Lotus International. The following year, Siza and Chiaramonte met in Evora, on the occasion of a new series by the Italian photographer featuring the buildings of the great Portuguese architect. It marked the beginning of a long friendship and a shared reflection on architecture, photography, and urban life. The Measure of the West presents a selection of sixty drawings by Siza and forty photographs taken by Chiaramonte in cities around the world. They make up two parallel routes that lead to the discovery of the shape of the modern city - always hanging in the balance between proportion, in which civilization can develop, and disproportion, in which civilization can go astray. Although animated by different intentions, these sketches and photographs appear as coherent traces of the same design, guided by the same desire to see, discover, understand, and learn. The differences between the black and white strokes of the drawings and the colour of the photographs disappear. Short texts, including thoughts on architecture, photography, drawing, representation, and nature, enrich a "poem of change" taking place in an era of globalization.
McGill-Queen's University Press
21 August 2018
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