AbstractsPhilosophy & Theology

Disjoint and Distortion: An Essay in Manifesting Contradiction

by Sarah L Vaz

Institution: University of Cincinnati
Department: Design, Architecture, Art and Planning: Architecture
Degree: M. Arch.
Year: 2014
Keywords: Architecture; rail yard; complexity and contradiction; absurdity; amusement park; distortion; incongruity
Record ID: 2043995
Full text PDF: http://rave.ohiolink.edu/etdc/view?acc_num=ucin1397467660


A contradiction exists: the systems that make our social structure possible are invisible. The CSX Queensgate train yard just west of downtown Cincinnati is one of the largest rail classification facilities in North America, and yet the public is at best only marginally conscious of its presence within the city. We accept this discrepancy because we accept so many other discrepancies. We live in an era in which paradox is paradigm. It is the incongruity of the paradoxical, Robert Venturi theorizes, that suggests a kind of truth. This thesis investigates incongruity by looking, thematically as well as formally, at three art movements of the twentieth century that embrace incongruous processes and conclusions: surrealism, expressionism, and relational art. This investigation focuses on two methods by which the incongruous is manifested, calls them disjoint and distortion, and applies them towards the programming and design of an amusement park to function above the operating train yard.