symbols and contexts

Emotion: Fear

Emotion: Fear (Photo credit: Cayusa)

The Folk

The Folk (Photo credit: estenh)

Symbols are an important feature of some architecture projects. However, if these symbols are laden with straightforward political or other meanings they become less attractive. As xxx states, “where artists employ symbols or metaphors of too common currency, or where, in Bruner’s terms, too little effort is required, or no emotional response is generated, then aesthetic judgment will go against the object.” Hence, if a building was adorned with a large swastika, this would invite hostility not just because of the Nazi connotations but because
the symbol is of too wide a currency. However, artists can sometimes usefully combine known symbols and contexts in uniquely ambiguous or interesting ways. Surprising combinations become more interesting than individual symbols alone, even if there may be no affective response.
This ‘category of possibility’ enhances our appreciation of the aesthetic. This, then, could be a defense of the better examples of post-modern architecture where symbols and historical architectural


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