Can’t… or rather… Shouldn’t we include nature in the new Tappan Zee Bridge design?
The Tappan Zee Bridge was built in 1955… on the cheap. It was meant to last 50 years, 57 years have past. A simulated photo of the new bridge design shown below accompanies a recent online article published in Nyack News and Views, which reader’s can access through the provided link.
Perhaps a night time, low angle simulated image of the impending bridge was chosen to better appeal it to the public, but I come away with the sense of a forcefully cold, bland, bare bones structure that is almost painful to look at. Most people will approach and pass through the structure during day light hours. They will encounter straight flat unyielding steel beams rising abruptly into an historic, often luminous valley vista. There are no curves, flow and movement considered in the vertical elements… no organic sensual lines like those found in nature.
The new Tappan Zee Bridge should be inspired by a sensitive use of light and air and forms found in nature. If environmental impact can be taken into account, why wasn’t the surrounding habitat considered? A tuning fork design ignores history and the beauty of this scenic spot, while subjecting all to the whims of Post Modern kitsch.
I’M under the not too vague impression… that Post Modernism is passing… if not already past… and the new trend in art and reason is about self-determination relative to an enduring relationship with nature. Post Modernism = appropriation. Isn’t the artist/panelist Jeff Koon’s all about appropriation? Isn’t Koon’s ALL ABOUT the material world? Another panelist/decision maker was the Architect Richard Meier. Many of his design elements incorporate curves and a feeling for sensuality, as does the third panelist and architect, Keith Brownlie’s bridge designs. I just don’t get it. Simplicity is key – yes – always, but it seems to me we’re getting Costco… an unimaginative bare bones replication… on the cheap… again.
READ FULL ARTICLE HERE:
(Two earlier comments posted by me to this article are printed below.)
I agree with Marie and Starfire… lowest bids are cautionary tales in the making.
Also… if a tuning fork is the best representation of Post Modernism in bridge design then perhaps it’s time to call on an architect like Frank Gehry who knows something about adding nature and flow to design, or perhaps a disciple of Oscar Niemeyer. Many of Richard Meier’s projects also have a sense of flow and movement, curvilinear lines that add a heck of a lot of elegance. Why isn’t there any in this design? It’s stiff, immoveable, cold and banal. It’s kitsch… like Koons. It will cross a major American, not to mention historic river 25 miles north out of NYC. It will be a gateway to all points west… a tuning fork… REALLY?
Jeff Koons: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeff_Koons
Jeff Koon’s web site: http://www.jeffkoons.com/
Richard Meier’s web site: http://www.richardmeier.com/www/
Oscar Niemeyer: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/06/world/americas/oscar-niemeyer-modernist-architect-of-brasilia-dies-at-104.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0www.nytimes.com/2012/12/06/world/americas/oscar-niemeyer-modernist-architect-of-brasilia-dies-at-104.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
Post Modernism: http://www2.iath.virginia.edu/elab/hfl0242.html