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A BIGamist Bricoleur: The Postmodern Avant-Gardism of Bjarke Ingels

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Can Bjarke Ingels be considered an avant-garde architect? Discussing both built and written works by Ingels, this article argues that some aspects of Ingels’s work – certain modernist typologies, motifs and planning proposals; certain ludic and improvisational approaches – suggest an affirmative answer, while other aspects of his work – the use of pop imagery, the return to representation, the acceptance of commodification and the strategic use of replication – confirm a postmodern, more conformist attitude at work. Ingels’s fascination with the utopian possibility points to an avant-garde stance, yet his managerialist approach to architecture and the absence of an overarching project in his oeuvre position him outside of avant-garde culture. This article concludes that Ingels’s production, in which accompanying discourse serves to direct interpretation of built works, is marked by a double allegiance to modernist and postmodernist strategies alike, leading to an ambiguous stance vis-à-vis the legacy of the historical avant-gardes.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationA Cultural History of the Avant-Garde in the Nordic Countries Since 1975
Editors Benedikt Hjartarson, Tania Ørum, Camilla Skovbjerg Paldam, Laura Luise Schultz
Place of publicationLeiden
PublisherBrill
Publication yearAug 2022
Pages936-954
ISBN (print)978-90-04-44456-0
ISBN (Electronic)978-90-04-51595-6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022
SeriesAvant Garde Critical Studies
Volume41
ISSN1387-3008
SeriesA Cultural History of the Avant-Gardes in the Nordic Countries I-IV
Volume41

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