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Kenosis Creativity Architecture


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Lindstrom, RS 2015 , 'Kenosis Creativity Architecture', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Theology and philosophy establish that kenosis, or self-emptying, reveals the ontology of creativity. But, until now, architecture – a primal expression of human creativity – has not been correlated with kenosis, nor has either been thought of as informing or taking the measure of the other. This dissertation moves toward rectifying that lack. It opens-up interdisciplinary thinking about kenosis to reveal the subject’s manifold foundations: its locus classicus in Christian scriptures, its antecedents in antiquity, its medieval and modern development, and its emergence in most major faith traditions. Such foundations enable a further opening-up of kenotic thought – for the first time, through architecture. Accordingly, the situations of eight, widely recognised architectural projects are re-examined, this time focusing on their kenotic claims and the kenosis they manifest. Located in North America, Europe, the Middle East, and East Asia – where several are affected by the kenotic dimensions of various world religions – these projects include works by Louis Kahn, I.M. Pei, Tadao Ando, Daniel Libeskind, and Peter Eisenman. Though newly revealing, this examination often mirrors the kenosis it seeks – holding the originating questions open, and opening-up still others. In fact, this thinking about kenosis through architecture ultimately turns, and opens-up a unique thinking about architecture through kenosis – extending to architecture’s very being. Kenotic emptiness asks of architecture’s fullness, of the barriers to architecture’s own kenosis. And it asks how such a kenosis might influence an increasingly secularised, globalised, and environmentalised – indeed, aestheticised – world. Questions of kenosis, creativity, and architecture are explored in the interest of elevating humanity’s thinking about the aesthetisation of culture; a critical pursuit, worthy to be critically considered, since such thinking affects virtually everyone and everything.

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Lindstrom, RS
Keywords: kenosis, creativity, architecture, secularization, aesthetization, self-emptying, self-assertion
Copyright Holders: The Author
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Copyright 2015 the author

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