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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Project Nothingness

posted by on September 30 at 11:09 AM

This future building will generate its own power and, like something invisible, cast no shadows.

Le Project Triangle is one of those buildings that make us think that we may actually drive flying cars one day. To be completed by 2014 in the Porte de Versailles area in Paris, its most impressive feature is that, according to the architects, it won’t cast shadows on adjacent buildings. The trick is the orientation and its shape: While it looks like a massive pyramid from one side, the other side shows that it really is an ultra-thin triangle resembling a shark’s fin.

Expressed in this fin of a building is the lasting longing for the thinness of a thing’s nothingness.

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"it won’t cast shadows on adjacent buildings."

This is not the same as "cast no shadows."

If I build a building in the middle of the desert it won't cast any shadows on any adjacent buildings. Big deal.

Posted by M | September 30, 2008 11:16 AM

"I'm so thin I can't see my shadow."

-- Paris Hilton in "Pledge This!"

Posted by John Bailo | September 30, 2008 11:28 AM

It looks like that monstrosity in North Korea, except decorated for Christmas.

Posted by Mahtli69 | September 30, 2008 11:37 AM

The root of the issue is "shadow". While this usually refers to the lessening of visible light, in weather it can refer to precipitation patterns; while sailing the idea is expressed as "lee".

The point being that this building appears to "generate its own power" through solar collection - this would seem to directly conflict with the idea of casting no shadow. Even if it only harvested the invisible wavelengths and allowed the others to pass through, it would still cast a "shadow" of less-useable solar energy.

Even a silent footfall leaves a footprint

Posted by John Galt | September 30, 2008 11:37 AM

@2 - John Bailo

Dude - you quote Paris Hilton movies. Seriously, you make your own gravy - you know? Oh look, you quote them repeatedly:

It's hard to stay current when you're older, isn't it?

Posted by John Galt | September 30, 2008 11:47 AM

I used to question why the Strange would have a Philosopher on payroll.

Now I don't.

Glad you are around for "these troubled times", Chaz.

Posted by Non | September 30, 2008 11:50 AM

I am having trouble understanding the last sentence. The apostrophe in "thing's" seems out of place because I don't know who *thing* is and how he owns nothingness.

Posted by inkweary | September 30, 2008 12:20 PM

i would totally watch a bravo reality show called "project nothingness."

Posted by jrrrl | September 30, 2008 12:37 PM

I am surprised that a building so thin could be stiff enough to stand up on its own in a strong wind, let alone keep from oscillating back and forth enough to make the occupants sick.

Posted by Greg | September 30, 2008 12:39 PM

maybe it won't cast shadows in the summer, but paris is about on the latitude as seattle - the sun is 15 degrees above the horizon on dec. 21st. everything casts a shadow then.

but, if herzog & demeuron say it will do it, it probably will. they haven't made a false step yet. i.e. the de young museum in golden gate park.

Posted by max solomon | September 30, 2008 3:15 PM

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