Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Arkham Architecture: The Darkitect Kight

By Stephen Tutka

Part 1: Intro

Now at first thought you may question, “What do comic books have to do with architecture?” And I would respond, “What doesn’t architecture relate to?” But that is food for thought for another time.
First, I’d like to elaborate a little on why I sought out this correlation. Simply, I collect comic books and Batman is my favorite (sorry Marvel fans but my collection is almost entirely DC. Nothing against your fabulous multiverse it’s cool too). In my collection of comics my favorite ones are either my Batman collection or Blackest Night and Brightest Day (oddly, these have very little of the Caped Crusader seeing as how the first issue of Blackest Night opens at Bruce Wayne’s grave). I love these because they are extremely complex and address difficult decisions and topics. So, I guess there is your first correlation… the surface of a comic is just pretty pictures and easy to digest but when you delve in these series of illustrations they tell a story that is complex and much more than meets the eye. Every line tells a story, words are carefully selected, characters are given extensive backgrounds, they provoke feeling, and they aren’t just pictures anymore. So…. You still haven’t talked about architecture. Ok. Ok. Ok. Architecture isn’t just a building. Every line means something, buildings tell stories, materials and finishes are selected carefully, codes and clients define parts of buildings while others arbitrary, buildings have narrative, and can provoke feeling. I’m sure you can see more relationships between comics and architecture than me sitting here and quickly typing a blog about it. But let’s try something a little more fun…
BATMAN! How is it that the Dark Knight relates to an architect?
·         Both prefer to wear black
·         Both deal with authority figures and city hall
·         Both take responsibility for a team (Batman and Robbin, JLA, the Outsiders)/(Architecture Firm, Stamping a drawing)
·         Batman fights and works with villains/architects fight and work with contractors
·         Both try to look out for the community they live in and work for
·         Batman is a night person/ architects (at least architecture students) pull all-nighters
·         Batman trained starting at the age of 12 to stop crime in Gotham City/ Architects must (now) have a professional degree (M.Arch usually) from an accredited program, pass the ARE (7… soon to be 5… tests) within 5 years of each other, and complete IDP (intern development program, some 5600 hours) all to become licensed.

Is that enough evidence for you?

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