a few months ago, jon yoder, a professor at the much-lauded architecture department of syracuse university called in to our office to ask if we would be interested in participating in their year-end symposium criptically named televisuality. we were intrigued and kept listening... he advanced a theory that i don't, to this day, fully comprehend. architecture and television, he said, have been at war for the better part of last century. come again? i thought. indeed, starting with frank lloyd wright's assertion that "television is chewing gum for the eyes," he continued, tv has historically been passed over as a source of inspiration in favor of the grande dame of cinema, examples of which are too numerous to cite.
like most things that are a mystery to me, i was instantly fascinated and graciously accepted jon's invitation to be one eighth of a panel of illustrious speakers.
i knew that i couldn't possibly agree with jon's assertion that tv was the bastard child of architecture. i also knew that i would be surrounded by very serious people such as charles renfro, sylvia lavin and anne friedberg, among others and i didn't want to disappoint with something too theaptSILLY. so, during a brainstorming of the highest order at theapt, it came up: what about the smurfs? that's right, the smurfs have had it right since the beginning! from eco-construction to foreboding the urban sprawl phenomenon, those little blue people were right there in 1958.
and so we went on crafting a 20 minute presentation on the unsung architectural accomplishments of one genius and visionary papa smurf complete with a detailed analysis of a smurf house as well as comtemplating the socio-economic impact of mushroom architecture on the world at large.
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