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The Plastic Language

The Plastic Language, ©Zeynep ÇOLAK

The work ‘Metropolis’ consists of plastic paper bended on each other to create fluid spaces and also different scaled branches are covering them. The individual pieces are stacked and dispersed in order to produce a miniature cityscape while giving references to Parametricism, Deconstructivism and Organic Architecture. The work resembles a forest with various scales of trees located in-between plastic surfaces. It is also a paradigm of an architectural format which people want to see in the future of metropolitan cities. The perceptible world behind the work “Metropolis” is a reflection of an architectural biodiversity which focuses on the relationship between human and other living species rather than only focusing on human beings and shows the position of human existence in the universe with the plastic language. In other words man made skyscrapers and nature can coexist without giving any compromises. For some time people forgot what architecture actually means; architecture should not be separating human beings from nature on the contrary it should bring human beings and nature closer. After all nature taught us everything we know because nature is the ultimate designer.

The Plastic Language, ©Zeynep ÇOLAK

Apart from these, the vertical spaces are formed of transparent overlapping layers which are a reference to how Colin Rowe and Robert Slutzky recognized the simultaneity between modern painting and architecture. In their book “Transparency: Literal and Phenomenal”(Slutzky, 1963)“”, they compared Picasso’s L'Arlésienne painting and the Bauhaus building. The relationship between two can be put briefly by saying with the achievement of composition formed of overlapping forms L'Arlésienne does not allow us to see the various aspects of an object at the same time as a consequence of limitless possibilities of alternative readings it offers. Similarly Bauhaus achieved a multiple sidedness so that it should be experienced from different viewpoints to be understood, in other words it needs to be experienced through movement which involves time, just like the artwork “Metropolis” should be experienced from different viewpoints with giving time.

The Plastic Language, ©Zeynep ÇOLAK

As a consequence another similarity between the fields of art that they require time to be experienced and they require time to be appreciated and I think this is the miracle of any artistic work; the fact of their being timeless. Therefore the greatness of an artwork is measured by their timelessness. Today we appreciate a cave painting just as much we appreciate a contemporary painting or a good architecture. It can be said that good art conveys the presence of the maker and the presence of human consciousness. Architecture isn’t just about the building; good architecture tells us something about the world. It tells us something about history; culture, how the society works and lastly tells us who we are and good art in general tell something about those. “Ah, to build, to build! That is the noblest of all arts.” said Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Architecture is the noblest art indeed, but one should always remember, without the other fields of arts to feed architecture; architecture would be incomplete, we would be incomplete. Dostoyevsky once said “Beauty will save the world.” I would say art will save the world.




She is a 3rd year architecture student at TED University. She was born and raised in Ankara/Turkey but currently she lives in Istanbul. Besides the architecture, she is getting educated to become a sculpture artist. She is also a former ski racing athlete in the national team and a big enthusiast of violin. Her goal is to become an inspiring artist in plastic arts.


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