I’m enjoying a weekend with two pairs of new shoes. Both pairs are Camper. The style is hip, and the materials are environmentally friendly at a level that’s over my head. But like a previous pair I’m replacing, what thrills me about them is that the soft tread lets me feel surfaces as if I were walking on my hands. Driving feels like wearing racing shoes, and cobblestones around the office remind me of reflexology charts.
But I bought them online, and not at a local vendor. Camper isn’t sold in town anymore. Our habit of using personal delivery services for consumables hardly seems to be sustainable practice, but neither are big box stores with enough selectiontgmn .
At this week’s staff meeting, I asked about inspiration. One was inspired by concepts that aren’t commissioned, and one described work for a really good client. This week, the process of pursuing and doing the work is getting to us more than work already built. That gives us some exciting confidence in the end results.
Got invited out on the town with some friends for First Friday. We mingled and looked at city photos, in the city museum on Fayetteville Street that used to be a hardware store. I drank a beer that appeared to be a microbrew, until my friends pointed to the Michelob label.
The party was outside – the streets were packed. Hargett Street was closed off in front of Raleigh Times, and became a night-time craft fair. The 135 Wilmington Street Building was an empty storefront, turned craft bazaar for the evening, where we met a puppeteer who appeared to be playing the violin, but was actually playing in ipod.
On Saturday, picked up the family at the Amtrak station. The station is undersized but vibrant and efficient. I parked in a space that said do not park, just like everyone else. The train was supposed to be killed by the automobile, but it’s now supposed to come back to kill the airplane.
On Sunday, we went to church in our school gymnacafetorium. At 3:30, we met an old-time gospel band for lunch-dinner in an old house rented by young people. This couple regularly bikes to work and hangs their fixed-gears over their brick fireplace with its gas logs.
We’re excited most about work we haven’t done yet. I’m buying shoes from online vendors. Our church is in a cafeteria. Parties are in the streets. Puppets are playing violins, but not really. It’s very confusing. When I think about purpose in architecture, I’m looking for Venturi’s Duck.
A hundred architectural lessons in these little weekend stories. Form follows function, but flexible forms fit future functions. Authenticity is in the moment, since purpose moves so quickly. I’m struck most by endurance of space. Perpetual fitup means life for a city.
Andy Osterlund AIA | LEED AP
Andrew Osterlund, Architect, PLLC
GREEN | URBAN | SMART ARCHITECTURE
313 S. Blount St., Suite 200A | Raleigh, NC 27601
(919) 889 6823 | www.aoarchitect.com