…………………………the research base of jon goodbun

Mud and Modernity, in Arena Journal for Architectural Research

What is concrete? Loved and loathed in equal measure, this building material, as soon as we try to define it, to specify it, to describe it, becomes, well, not very concrete at all, but rather fluid and surprisingly abstract! Concrete is a material which has been going through an interesting intellectual and practical renaissance in recent years, in no small part driven by the convergence of several different kinds of technology-driven manufacturing changes – ranging from computer aided manufacturing of formworks, to photograph etching, to engineering software, to nano- and bio-chemistry to 3D printing – which have opened up new worlds of realizable, expressive and performance optimised form. The demands posed by anthropogenic climate change, energy use, resource scarcity, and the environmental question more generally, have equally transformed the technologies and industries that are now feeding into developments in this material. On its own though, that is not enough to understand the revival in interest. In this paper I will argue that there are indeed profound relationships between capital, modernity and concrete. However, I will suggest that in order to really start to grasp these relations, we will need to explore some ways of thinking about concrete that have not been developed so far within the recent literature on the material. Notably I will develop an ecological approach to thinking about what concrete is, and in so doing redefine this material as a particular form of mud, or mudcrete: a material which is deployed by both human and non-human builders. I will note the ecological energetics and extended materialities of mudcrete, and will reflect upon the conceptual ‘forms’ or ‘patterns’ of this matter as a particular modality of the production of nature. Mudcretes always internalise in particularly interesting ways I argue, their external relations, the extended networks of materials, skills, labours and energies that go into their production. Mudcretes frequently stage fascinating bio-semiotic performances, whichever species or processes are dominant. But when the mudcretes in question are the product of human labour, they always act as social media.

Full article available here: http://ajar.arena-architecture.eu/articles/10.5334/ajar.6/

Filed under: ecology, research, teaching

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


Twitter Feed @jongoodbun

  • RT @eiecampaign: NEW: #EnoughlsEnough announces its first new affiliation. Welcome aboard, @ucu! We have your back in the fight for a real… 17 hours ago
  • RT @eiecampaign: Next time they call workers "greedy" for asking for a pay rise, remember this: Shell is giving shareholders a £6,500,000,… 6 days ago
  • RT @johnmcdonnellMP: GB is right to compare this with Banking Crash but let’s learn lesson from that period & not just bail out companies b… 1 week ago
  • RT @andrewrypel: The next decade is going to be intense: "More than half the work to stop climate change must be done in roughly ten year… 1 week ago
  • Growing calls for new elections in Greece.. good overview of the various complexities of the current situation and… twitter.com/i/web/status/1… 1 week ago
  • RT @zarahsultana: Enough is Enough (@eiecampaign) is the campaign to fight the cost-of-living crisis and in just 2 days, 250,000+ people ha… 1 week ago
  • RT @ClimateBen: Given the extensive & pervasive consequences of the COVID 19 pandemic, it was truly scary to discover the massive health vu… 1 week ago
%d bloggers like this: