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XEFIROTARCH: Three Recent Projects

Banvard Gallery / Knowlton Hall
January 15, 2014 - 7:00pm to February 25, 2014 - 5:00pm


The Banvard Gallery is proud to present three recent projects by the Los Angeles-based design practice Xefirotarch, led by Hernan Diaz Alonso the spring 2014 Baumer Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Knowlton School. These projects embody a shift towards a paradigm of Species, as opposed to the ubiquitous platform of Types. In contrast to types, species are malleable entities that are in constant metamorphosis through their characteristic adaptations and mutations. Architectural design as mutation is both an advanced stance towards and an evolution of the tradition of expertise in form and proportion. In order to radicalize this agenda—one that promotes the autonomy of form— Xefirotarch explores possibilities of artificial and natural interactions.

The firm’s mutating topologies explore emergent aesthetics as methods of material and structure, but their projects decisively invert the mechanisms of traditional beauty. In their work, the ugly and the horrific become necessary variations that allow for an escape towards a spatial model of shocking presence capable of producing lust and arousal. In place of delightful beauty, the firm’s aesthetic material specifies a will to anguish or even more appalling encounters with architecture. Consequently the projects featured in the exhibition actively court the grotesque qualities that emerge from a new kind of structural organization that Xefirotarch calls Excessive.

Xefirotarch contends that although there are a multitude of technical aspects that allow architecture to coalesce within its form, the tension and interaction between architecture and its image offers the most immediate and lasting consequence of all of its processes. The work featured in this exhibition aggressively employs this aesthetic process so that we might understand architecture as a living entity—supple, dynamic, responsive and cohesive—allowing for mixtures of culture and ideas to coagulate amidst its presence.

Lecture and Opening Night Reception

An opening night reception will be held outside of the Banvard Gallery starting at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, January 15. The reception will follow the Baumer Lecture Series presentation by Hernan Diaz Alonso at 5:30 the school’s Gui Auditorium. Both the lecture and reception are free and open to the public.

About the Banvard Gallery

The Banvard Gallery is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and is free and open to the public. The gallery is located on the first floor of Knowlton Hall on the campus of The Ohio State University.

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