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CITY - ESCAPES - YUGOSLAV GENERAL STAFF BUILGINGFLUID AIR DRAWINGThe aim of this submission is to propose drawing as a methodological tool that is developed during PhD research which explores the invisible data of air space of the ex Yugoslav Ministry of Defense Building (Yugoslav General Staff Building) designed and built between 1957 and 1965 by architect Nikola Dobrovic. Dobrovic's architectural design process and principles of the Yugoslav General Staff Building were conceptualized in his essay "Moving space - Bergson's "dynamic schema" - a new visual environment". Layer by layer,the proposed methodology decodes the relationship between invisible/visible, present/absent building transformations over time (design process [...], under construction [...], life of the building [...], NATO bombing of Yugoslavia in1999 [...], heavily damaged [...], post-bombing [...],(no)reconstruction [...], demolition [...], etc. ).
Air spatial values and specific aspects of dynamic data of the building will be analyzed through the main spatial parts of Dobrovic’s theoretical study of moving space: indoor landscape, the space between object A and B, and cityscape transformation. The fluid air drawing defragments these three spatial parts through series of drawings. Each existing and emerging view of deconstructed traces is slowly disentangling our field of view into new perceptions by inverting contradictions, deconstructing the sequences and merging seemingly incompatible. Uncontrollable appearance and disappearance of the transfigured air spatial volumes, anatomized through drawings, build a new grid of traces, new moves and new rhythms, which could challenge the future organization of our cities.
The constant transformability of the General Staff Building has specific history, from Dobrovic's theoretical work up to new life of the partly demolished building. After years of reconsideration and polemic discussions about the architectural quality of the building, even though it is a cultural heritage, there is no guarantee that we will leave this damaged building as a trace of history, of architectural thinking, as well as a trace of spiritualm odule for generations to come. What would the trace of the General Staff building be if the final decision were to demolish it completely? How could we document one of the most important Dobrovic's building if it did not exist anymore? Is there any methodological tool which could re-conceptualize and defragment all those historical layers without historical specification and political influences, but with a completely new and pure architectural reading of all those dynamic processes? Is the traditional documentation the only way to testify the life of the building, or architects could perhaps create anew technique?
The aim of proposed fluid air drawing was not only to analyze and defragment the complex processes of energy exchange of one building, but also to open the research of new understanding of our cultural heritage. Fluid air drawing can articulate the variability and rhythm within the structure of a building and its relationship with cityscape ― which represents series of single moments and lives that cannot be repeated, but might prove valuable for the mapping process of energy exchange ― mental atmosphere.
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