Altoon + Porter Architects: Selected + Current Works

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Images Pub., Jun 30, 2006 - Architecture - 256 pages
Ronald Altoon describes the work of his los Angeles-based firm as "contextual," a single word that encapsulates the working philosophy of the firm. Contextualism, however, in the way Altoon uses the word, becomes something fairly complex. He does not use the word in the commonly understood sense, that of designing to conform with existing buildings on the site. His notion of contextualism is far more inclusive.
For Altoon + Porter, context is a value. This approach puts human comfort and well-being at the top of the scale, and addresses plan making as well as building technology to that end. Context, of course, is not a single factor, which is why stylistic contextualism, by itself, is superficial. Context is many factors - culture, climate, building technology, urbanism - working together as a system. Altoon + Porter's contextualism is sometimes quiet, sometimes loud, but always appropriate, despite many diverse locations and project types.
Altoon + Porter treats context as an approach to the entire set of design problems. Rather than concerning itself with self-referential issues of style, Altoon + Porter searches for the best possible relationship among buildings, people, and urban surroundings, from the point of view of human experience. For readers, especially those previously unaware of the technical and geographic range of the firm, this book documents the results of a fruitful search.

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