Published Writings 4 - as referred to by *

(Designed my first year as Faculty, part of the Architecture at Rice series)

 

KAHN Louis I. KahnTalks With Students

the original, designed in 1970, and its position situated within a didactic history.

KAHN  the title simply states; refer to my statement on page: WORK- Idea as Architecture/Architecture as Idea.

 

 

The design reflects many of the Principles that drive my approach to a multivalent mode of reforming and reiterating them.

Inversions, Layers, Transparency, Opacity, Reversal, Symmetry, Balance.

The original title was a deliberate reference to a 1943 book by LeCorbusier (apparently the re-issue some 30 years later, was not aware of the connection), and a series of translations/appropriations at the time validated the parti of using the form of 'Blank Verse' to capture the pattern of Kahn's speaking (which he acknowledged to me).

TALKS WITH STUDENTS DESIGN
TALKS WITH STUDENTS DESIGN

Lou Kahn had visited the University the year before, and I was handed a transcript of 2 days, and photos. My Design was to create a sequence of 'layers' and oppositions. This involved literal 'layers', initially by way of "seeing through" die-cut holes.

TALKS WITH STUDENTS Covers
TALKS WITH STUDENTS Covers

Back cover (L) and Front (R) are graphic inversions of grey/black. The Back's circle is graphic, the Front's is the first die-cut hole.

TALKS WITH STUDENTS - Endpaper
TALKS WITH STUDENTS - Endpaper

Through the Endpaper, the image of Kahn appears.

TALKS WITH STUDENTS Title Page
TALKS WITH STUDENTS Title Page

Lou Kahn liked the Design, commenting "To Peter, in deep appreciation for the good interpretations in spirit". The page was a transparent sheet, extending the idea of 'layer'.

TALKS WITH STUDENTS - Credits
TALKS WITH STUDENTS - Credits

Turning to the Credits reveals a second transparent sheet, a reversal of Kahn's image, extending both the "layer" idea, as well as Inversion.

TALKS WITH STUDENTS - Day 1
TALKS WITH STUDENTS - Day 1

The first printed page, Kahn's "Talk With Students". The layout was constructed as 'Blank Verse', based on the rhythm of his speaking. It was this which LK was referring to.

TALKS WITH STUDENTS - transition
TALKS WITH STUDENTS - transition

The end of Day 1, with another transparent sheet picturing LK speaking, like Socrates, to the students (all in white shirts) under a tree.

TALKS WITH STUDENTS - Day 2
TALKS WITH STUDENTS - Day 2

The segue starts the Second Day, in which students asked LK questions.

TALKS WITH STUDENTS - Bibliography
TALKS WITH STUDENTS - Bibliography

At the time, there was no comprehensive citation reference on LK, so I decided to assemble one to put his thoughts in context.

TALKS WITH STUDENTS - credits
TALKS WITH STUDENTS - credits

The list of the Team continued the Circle motif, a constant image in LK's work. Again, positive/negative inversion. (The student who assembled the Bibliography was sent to LK as an Intern when he graduated 3 years later).

TALKS WITH STUDENTS - ENDPAPER
TALKS WITH STUDENTS - ENDPAPER

A "reversal" photo taken of LK 'completed the concept' of an ending, linking back to the initial images of him holding hands behind his head as he spoke. The grey endpaper was another die-cut hole.

TALKS WITH STUDENTS  inside cover
TALKS WITH STUDENTS inside cover

The die-cut Endpaper juxtaposed the final "inversion", which carries through to the Back cover as yet another iversion.

LE CORBUSIER - Talks with Students
LE CORBUSIER - Talks with Students

My design 'Louis I. Kahn – Talks With Students' was my oblique reference to Le Corbusier's 1943 book of the same name.

KAHN 2nd Edition Covers
KAHN 2nd Edition Covers

Re-issued some 30 years later; if "Imitation is the sincerest form of Flattery", the use of the referential circle/photo is taken as such. In changing the title to "Conversations with Students", I only assume the designer was unaware of my reference to the book by LeCorbusier. My remarks refer to the Generation which had passed. Read the Introduction I wrote, the title of which is a Pun: LOU ICON.

BAUWELT 1/2 11 Jan 1971 COVER
BAUWELT 1/2 11 Jan 1971 COVER

Shortly after publication, BAUWELT reproduced in translation to German, the entire text of KAHN Talks with Students. Read the Introduction I wrote.

Tung Hai Jien Chu-cover
Tung Hai Jien Chu-cover

Taiwanese students were excited to reprint the text: they wrapped the package with images from Chinese culture . . . verifying the essentially transcendental nature of Kahn's philosophy.

CASABELLA 350-351 - cover
CASABELLA 350-351 - cover

Even the Italians took on a translation which followed the 'blank verse' layout exactly.

LOUIS I. KAHN - cover
LOUIS I. KAHN - cover

Subtitled "Writings Lectures Interviews", the content was a fat 'anthology' . . . however, the Credit date was a misattribution, some 5 years BEFORE I actually designed it.

'CLICK' on images for Caption and to review in Sequence.