Echoing his work in architecture, in his practice as an artist, he questions the limitations of the two disciplines.

Şevki Pekin Architecture
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Can you say Iconographobia?

Writing, 2015

This project was developed to challange the relationship between public art & architecture and public space. 

There’s every reason to develop a city’s public spaces as more than open voids —make them positive objects. There’s every reason the iconicity of the tower should serve more than itself —give it to its public. There’s every reason to suggest that venues of leisure, gathering, and enculturation must evolve.

Were city only a machine for production, the grid block-as-building is enough; If merely a condensation of people and energy, the tower, likewise sufficient. But if the excess of that energy is to become civic and cultural (as has before been the case), space is necessary for that culture to gather and grow. If the city is to remain a producer of civic and cultural opportunity in its contemporary, privatized form, perhaps the nature of public space likewise needs a new and more assertive posture.

Typically, public space falls into one of two categories: the void between developments, or the greater undeveloped land on which developments are placed. Public spaces, here, aren’t so much public as they are ‘non-private.’ A third type of public space exists in that of churches and museums, but these, too, have a restricted set of agenda that tend not to provide open space for purposes outside their own. Here proposed is a new type: a vertical and unprogrammed tower; an icon, an architectural shell, open to all.

Not a vertical park, but a stacked series of public gathering places. Events, meetings, celebrations, etc.—the tower provides the venue for activity that the typical urban dwelling unit cannot, and more of it than the typical public square can.

This proposal imagines anew Los Angeles’ Pershing Square as this active public monument. It is a roofless structure of 20 stories, developed with a facade of patterned, polychromatic metalwork. The coloration establishes an imagery of distinctly computational painting on the facades of the building, used for its tectonic suggestiveness and leveraged as the envelope construction and connection logic. Inside the envelope, floor plates engage and open to a central courtyard, generating public spaces along the entire structure. It is a stack of rings, each with infinite possibility, waiting for its public.

An iconic object as an open container.
A public space contained in monument.