I guess I have to start thinking seriously about my thesis for next year. I am really unsure of what i am going to do. But, I am attracted to really vague ideas of what it means to have a culture or rather a lack of a culture. I have grown up in a certain context that is pretty much free of a deep historical, ethnic, or religious tradition. I am not sure if that is bad or not. It is conceptually great… the melting pot deal. But there are millions of people in America that also don’t have a lot of stuff to “hold on to”. This is interesting to me. I don’t think it is the responsibility of a buiding or even an urban plan to foster a culture or even attempt to deal with such a big thing. I actually doubt it is possible. I kind of think buildings should just be good and cool on their own as buildings and when people try to assign them too much responsibility above that, everything tends to become watered down and overly-simplified. So, I guess while this is an interesting thing to me…I don’t yet know if I can push it into something tangible enough that I will be satisfied with. I have read this book a couple of times called Breakfast of Champions by Kurt Vonnegut. He is amazing and a lot of the stuff he says resonates with me and makes me want to make stuff…
” The things other people have put into my head, at any rate, do not fit together nicely, are often useless and ugly, are out of proportion with one another, are out of proportion with life as it really is outside my head.
I have no culture, no humane harmony in my brains. I can’t live without a culture anymore.”
-KURT VONNEGUT, in Breakfast of Champions