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Aesthetic; architecture:the making of metaphors (C) copyright
by Barie Fez-Barringten   
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Last edited: Friday, November 23, 2012
Posted: Tuesday, July 24, 2012

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Arnold Berlant’s writes that: “Sense perception lies at the etymological (history of words) core of aesthetics (Gr. aesthesis, perception by the senses), and is central to aesthetic theory, aesthetic experience, and their applications. Berlant finds in the aesthetic a source, a sign, and a standard of human value”. It is this human value which is one leg of the metaphor and the very basis for the view that metaphor is the foundation for both art, architecture and aesthetics, and why I have spent over forty years researching the stasis to architecture being an art (because it too makes metaphors) it can also be shown that this same stasis is the commonplace to the works of aesthetic thought and investigation. . This coincidence (between aesthetics and art) confirms the intrinsic nature of this study of epistemology of architecture and aesthetics. The metaphoric evidence I believe will prove both useful to the creation, teaching and valuation of works of art as well as their architectural off-spring. In fact metaphor is the driving parte for most creative arts and architectural works.

Aesthetic; architecture:the making of metaphors (C) copyright

By Barie Fez-Barringten:Associate Professor: Globla Univesity


Early monographs justifying architecture as the making of metaphors were steeped in deductive reasoning since we could not find new researched information pertaining to metaphors. Many of my monographs included analyzing and explaining the syllogism: Art [1] is the making of metaphors Architecture is an art[1] Therefore architecture is the making of metaphors. Till now we did nothing to reason why art [1] is neither the making of metaphors nor why architecture is an art. Since 1967 I proceeded to analyze the presumptions and find its many applications. This new information in Metaphor and Thought by Andrew Ortony first published in 1979, provides evidence to support inductive reasoning and to this end each axiom is its own warrant to the inferences of the above syllogism and the answer to questions of why metaphor is the stasis to any of the syllogism’s claims and implications. In argumentation (Zarefsky,D (2005) .it is noted that in induction there is no new information added. In both methods the metaphor is at their root and as such the basis of aesthetics and as such essential to understand the stasis to what makes all arts the making of metaphors and how that Wilson’s statement is true for everything as most are metaphorical s as well. The matter then is one of standards, social rightness and the ability any one or another work has an explanation of its form.

             Architecture as the making of metaphors not only is the stasis to why architecture is art but also explains the formation of architectural aesthetic vocabulary. The below is predominantly developed from a study of “Metaphors and Thought” by Andrew Ortony, and, is in addition to over forty years of my work about “architecture as the making of metaphors. It is my hope that this monograph will introduce to aesthetics an architectural vocabulary to further the appreciation of works of architecture.                    Arnold Berlant’s writes that: “Sense perception lies at the etymological (history of words) core of aesthetics (Gr. aesthesis, perception by the senses), and is central to aesthetic theory, aesthetic experience, and their applications. Berlant finds in the aesthetic a source, a sign, and a standard of human value”. It is this human value which is one leg of the metaphor and the very basis for the view that metaphor is the foundation for both art, architecture and aesthetics, and why I have spent over forty years researching the stasis to architecture being an art (because it too makes metaphors) it can also be shown that this same stasis is the commonplace to the works of aesthetic thought and investigation. . This coincidence (between aesthetics and art) confirms the intrinsic nature of this study of epistemology of architecture and aesthetics. The metaphoric evidence I believe will prove both useful to the creation, teaching and valuation of works of art as well as their architectural off-spring. In fact metaphor is the driving parte for most creative arts and architectural works.

                  Some contemporary aesthetic theory differs with how best to define the term “art”, What should we judge when we judge art?, What should art be like?, The value of art, things of value which define humanity itself; contrasted to Raymond Williams who argues that there is no unique aesthetic object but a continuum of cultural forms from ordinary speech to experiences that are signaled as art by a frame, institution or special event. Conversations about aesthetics, metaphors and architecture reassess current and traditional issues by providing a scientific analysis for the way metaphors work in architecture. This is the “stasis” (the state of equilibrium {equipoise} or inactivity caused by opposing equal forces) of the controversy of architecture being an art; that if architecture behaves, acts, looks and works like art than it too must be an art.

                          Why? Because it, too, makes metaphors, and those metaphors are varied in depth, kind, scope and context. It is the stasis because it is where art and architecture meet. The metaphor is the conceptual focal point. While many claim that the architect is the “techne” artist being a crafts man point has been conceptual and so useful as to bridge, carry-over and provide both artist and architect a common authority over the making of the built environment. As stasis, “architecture as the making of metaphors” enables the center of the dispute to be argued with common purpose. So this is a stasis in definition which concedes conjecture. With all the controversy around "knowing"; how do we know we know and the inaccuracy of language and dubious nature of scientific conclusions I have written over fifteen monographs about “architecture as the making of metaphors”                             This is the first with the sciences of linguistic, psychology and cognition definitions of the metaphor and there fore a set of third party facts by which to base our comparison. It was my hope that these commonalities provided substantive reasons to allow the metaphor linking architecture to metaphors as my theorem (stasis): "architecture is the making of metaphors”. “If art is the making of metaphors and architecture is an art then it too must make metaphors. But until now aside form this formal logic we have not shown the informal logic, argument and evidence of this proposition. The below are excerpts form my monograph of paradigms and axioms about architecture based on Metaphor and Thought. In each of the below cases I have fist paraphrased the scientist's conclusions based on a notable commonality to architecture where space allowed described an architectural process or product in the terms of each finding. Out these comparisons there came topoi (Zaretsky,D (2005) (A traditional theme or motif; a literary convention.) which we can use to describe architecture and aesthetics, all below sections and paragraphs reference Metaphor and Thought by A. Ortony. (Ortony,A)

               Whether by formal or informal reasoning, whether by deductive or inductive reasoning it is necessary to know that aesthetics’ fundamental basis for linking a specific case to general referent is, as art, bridging the craft to the craftsman, the concept to the craft and the observation to a model. . While in earlier monographs I have dealt with the specifics of these relationships this monograph presents the ways metaphors work and by induction support claims. The study shows that metaphors are not all the same and work in different ways. These different ways are the evidence for the inferences to the claims and resolution significant to aesthetics, art, and architecture; namely that artist, art critiques, philosophers, architects have an awareness of many the shapes and forms of metaphors and their possible inclusion in what can be judged and included. Aesthetics mainstay: ’beauty is in the eye of the beholder’ where the beholder is the referent of the metaphor and the necessary completion of the judgment.                                   While there can be an aesthetic experience, without such a referent it’s understating and taste would be irrelevant. With two referents, the social norm and the specific case, the experience and taste is, too, a metaphor. As metaphor carries-over, transfers and talks about one thing in terms of another; taste is at the heart of determining whether a work is art, its value, a work of architecture, etc. If there is no bridge then the work is another kind of metaphor, perhaps a technical metaphor linked to the craft of the art and if there is no bridge, determining how close or far from the ideal would be capricious. Yet one can describe ones feelings involving the senses. Having studied behavioral psychology many of my earlier design projects were predicated on the affects of space, volumes, planes and shapes on the five senses.

                     I admired and under-studied with architect, Frederick Kiesler. Yet these relationships between aesthetics and metaphor, while useful do not wholly explain the aesthetic and sensual experience of art or architecture. It only assumes these experiences as a referent to aesthetic judgment and the making of metaphors. The generative metaphor is the name for a process of symptoms of a particular kind of seeing-as, the “meta-pherein” or “carrying –over” of frames or perspectives from one domain of experience to another. This process he calls generative which many years earlier WJ Gordon called the Metaphoric Way of Knowing (Gordon, W.J.J.) and Paul Weiss (Weiss,P) called “associations”. In this sense both in enterprise archirtecture, interior design and traditional architecture after assimilating the program the very first step in the design process is to develop a “parte’ (An ex parte presentation is a communication directed to the merits or outcome of a proceeding …it’s the resolution of the argument consisting of claims, inferences, evidence and warrants to the inference).

                 It is a “top-down” ( Plyshen, Z.) approach later followed by designs which meet the parte. The parte may follow the design process and be presented to sell the product. The landscape is replete with an infinite number of inane replicas which render readers dull, passive and disinterested (How many times will you read the same book?) Mass housing, commercial office buildings and highways are the main offenders leaving the owner designed and built residence, office, factory, fire station, pump house, as unique and delightful relief’s in an otherwise homogenized context. The reader stops reading because it is the same as before. Not reading the copy yet seeing the copy and the collective of copies focuses rather on the collective as the metaphor as the overall project which also may be “dead”. In its time, Levittown’s uniqueness and the sub-structures sameness were its’ metaphor. It was alive and today still lives as new residents remodel upgrade and exhume their “dead” to become a “living” metaphor. Revitalization teams of revivalist have discovered there is more than turf and proprietorship, peculiarization, personalization and authentication are required for a metaphor to live. In this is the art of making metaphors for the architect of public works. In this is the aesthetic of public works and culturally pervasive urban design. An example of novel images and image metaphors is Andre Breton’s “My wife……whose waist is an hourglass” explains…..”By mapping the structure of one domain onto the structure of another”, (Lakoff,G) .

                “This is a superimposition of the image of an hour glass onto the image of a woman’s waist by virtue of their common shape. As before the metaphor is conceptual; it is not the works themselves, but the metal images. Here, we have the mental image of an hour glass and of a woman and we map the middle of the hourglass into the waist of the woman. The words are prompts for us to map from one conventional image to another”. Lakoff concludes that “ all metaphors are invariant with respect to their cognitive topology, that is, each metaphorical mapping preserves image-schema structure:” Likewise when we look at the geometrical formal parts of an architectural metaphor we note those common elements where fit, coupling and joints occur. We remember that which exemplified the analogous match. (Lakoff,G) This observation of the metaphor finds that the commonality, commonplace and similarity are the chief focus of the metaphor. As Frank Lloyd Wright designed his Prairie architecture with dominant horizontal axis thrust to his structure as common to the horizontal axis of the land upon which the building sits. Thus the two horizontal axes, the land and then the building were wed by their commonality of horizontality. According to Lakoff plausible accounts rather than scientific results is why we have conventional metaphors and why conceptual systems contain one set of metaphorical mappings than another. An architectural work establishes its own vocabulary which once comprehended become the way in which we experience the work, finding its discrepancies and fits and seeking the first and all the other similar elements. We do judge the work as to have Consistency, integrity and aesthetics. Buildings which do not have these characteristics do not work as metaphors. ((Lakoff,G))

              The relevance of studying architecture:the making of metaphors is to provide practitioners, owners, and mainly those that shape the built environment that they have a somber and serious responsibility to fill our world with meaning and significance, That what they do matters as in this first of Layoff’s results (Please note the application of Layoff’s vocabulary, definitions and descriptions related to linguistics metaphorically applied to architecture). Metaphor is the main mechanism through which we comprehend abstract concepts and perform abstract reasoning. For example, as this is so for linguistics (spoken or written), then I infer that it must be true for non-linguistics, and I give as evidence the built habitats and their architectural antecedents, being as how what is built is first thought and conceived separately from building as thinking and conceiving is separate from the outward expression, whether it is one or thousands, public cultures is influenced, bound and authenticated by its’ metaphors. Not withstanding “idolatry”, the metaphors are the contexts of life’s dramas.

             As our physical bodies are read by our neighbors, finding evidence for inferences about social, political and philosophical claims about our culture and its place in the universe is a metaphorical act. Subject matter, from the most mundane to the most abstruse scientific theories, can only be comprehended via metaphor. ((Lakoff,G)) Much subject matter, from the most mundane to the most abstruse scientific theories, can only be comprehended via metaphor where metaphor is fundamentally conceptual, not linguistic, in nature ((Lakoff,G) Metaphorical language is a surface manifestation of conceptual metaphor. ((Lakoff,G)) As language is to speech so are buildings to architecture where each has a content and inner meaning of the hole as well as each of its parts. As each word, each attachment, plain, material, structure had first been conceived to achieve some purpose and fill some need. Hidden from the reader is the inner psychology, social background, etc of the man when speaking and the programming deign and contacting process from the reader of a building metaphor.

              As in completing an argument the reader perceives the inferences with its warrants and connects the evidence of the seen to the claims to make the resolution of the whole, all of which are surmised from the surface. Through much of our conceptual system is metaphorical; a significant part of it is non-metaphorical. Metaphorical understanding is grounded in non-metaphorical understanding. ((Lakoff,G)) The science of the strength of materials, mathematics, structures, indeterminate beams, truss design, mechanical systems, electricity, lighting, etc. are each understood metaphorically and there precepts applied metaphorically but often random selections, trails and feasibility are random and rather in search of the metaphor with out knowing it is or not a metaphor and fit to be part of the metaphor at hand. On the other hand we may select on or another based on non-metaphorical, empirical test and descriptions of properties. We then try to understand the metaphor in the selection, its commonality, how it contributes to the new application, how its has properties within itself which are alone strange and unrelated yet when couple with the whole or part of the created metaphor contribute to metaphor. Aesthetic judgments are affected by sense we have of both the technical and conceptual aspects of the metaphor. Metaphor allows us to understand a relatively abstract or inherently unstructured subject matter in terms of a more concrete or at least more highly structured subject matter [((Lakoff,G)) .

               The whole of the metaphor is designed in such a way as to clarify, orient and provide “concrete” reification of all the design parameters into a “highly structured’ work, a work which homogenizes all these diverse and disjointed systems and operations into a well working machine. Building types such as pharmaceutical, petrochemical laboratories, data research centers, hospitals, space science centers, prisons, etc are such relatively abstract unstructured uses which only careful assembly can order. Faced with both housing and creating identity the Greeks and the Romans derived an Order of Architecture which we now call the Classical Order of Architecture. Long before the use of computers after faced with a complex way of teams of service clerks communicating on the phone, accessing and sharing files and instantly recording all transactions I invented a huge a round table where all clerks would be facing the center where would be sitting a kind of “Lazy Susan” . I choose the Lazy Suzan because of my experience in Chinese restaurants and selling Lazy Suzan’s as a young sales assistant in a gift store in the Bronx. The aesthetics of this design were driven by an elegant accommodation to a complex function. .

              Before the public ever sees the constructed metaphor Building Officials, manufactures, city planners, owners, estimators, general contactors, specialty contractors, environmentalist, neighbors and community organization frost read the drawings and map their observations to their issues to form a slanted version of the reality. Their mappings are based on the warrants which are their licensed to perform. Each warrant will support a different mapping (inference) and result in its own metaphor. In effect each will see a kind of reality of the proposed in the perspective of their peculiar warrant, where license is permission from authority to do something. It is assumed if one gets permission it has met the conditions, operations, ideal and goals of the proposed metaphor. Like a landscape artist who gathers for the chaos of the nature into select5ed items to organize into the canvas so that the viewers will find what he saw and reconstruct so the architect and the user map their reality into a metaphor. In this way the conception of the map is the metaphor and what is made by the cartographer is a "graphic" to simplify the chaos to find the commonality. Sifting through the program the architect seeks the “commonality” between the reality and experience to make the metaphor.

               Mapping is only possible when we know the “commonplace”, the commonality, the characteristic common to both, the terms that both the source and the target have in common that the mapping takes place. As the architect structures his program, design and specifications he simultaneously structures the metaphor of his work of architecture. Architecture consists of program specifics where the conditions, operations, goals and ideals are from heretofore unrelated and distant contexts but are themselves metaphors “mapped across conceptual domains”. As the architectural program the mappings are asymmetric and partial. The only regular pattern is their irregularity, and, like a person can be read and understood, once one is familiar with the personality and character, vocabulary and references, and of course the context and situation of the work the work can also be read and understood. . The regularity with which different languages employ the same metaphors, which often appear to be perceptually based, has led to the hypothesis that the mapping between conceptual domains corresponds to neural mappings in the brain.

                Schemas [((Lakoff,G)) are the realms in which the mappings takes place much the same as the inferences in arguments have warrants and link evidence to claims so do these schemas, architects carry-over their experiences with materials, physics, art, culture, building codes, structures, plasticity, etc. to form metaphor.. Aesthetically, humans also interact with their environments based on their sensory capabilities. ((Lakoff,G)) The importance of the senses is discussed by Arnold Berlant in the fields of human perception systems, but like perceptual psychology and cognitive psychology, are not exact sciences, because human information processing is not a purely physical act, and because perception is affected by cultural factors, personal preferences, experiences, and expectations, so human scale in architecture can also describe buildings with sightlines, acoustic properties, task lighting, ambient lighting, and spatial grammar that fit well with human senses. However, one important caveat is that human perceptions are always going to be less predictable and less measurable than physical dimensions. However, the scale of habitable metaphors is the intrinsic relation between the human figure and his surroundings as measured, proportioned and sensed. ((Lakoff,G)) It is dramatically represented by Da Vinci's Vitruvian Man (see below illustration) is based on the correlations of ideal human proportions with geometry described by the ancient Roman architect Vitruvius, representation of the human figure encircled by both a circumference encapsulating its’ feet to its outstretched fingertips where part is then encased in a square. This scale is read in elevations, sections, plans, and whole and based realized in the limited and bound architectural space. These spaces and their variations of scale are where the reader perceives the architectural metaphors of compression, smallness, grandeur, pomposity, equipoise, balance, rest, dynamics, direction, static ness, etc. In his Glass House, Phillip Johnson extended that space to the surrounding nature, making the walls the grass and surrounding trees, St. Peter’s interiors is a Piranesi space. (The Prisons Carceri d'invenzione or 'Imaginary Prisons'), is a series of 16 prints produced in first and second states that show enormous subterranean vaults with stairs and mighty machines. Piranesi vision takes on a Kafkaesque and Escher-like distortion, seemingly erecting fantastic labyrinthian structures, epic in volume, but empty of purpose and human scale in this work and often human scale in architecture is deliberately violated ((Lakoff,G)) for monumental effect.

                        Buildings, statues, and memorials are constructed in a scale larger than life as a social/cultural signal that the subject matter is also larger than life. An extreme example is the Statue of Liberty, the Washington Monument, etc.It is not hard to experience a built metaphor as it is an ordinary fixture on the landscape of our visual vocabulary. It has predictable, albeit peculiar and indigenous characteristics where the generic nature of the cues are anticipated. A conceptual system contains thousands of conventional metaphorical mappings which form a highly structured subsystem of the conceptual system. ((Lakoff,G)) Over the year’s society, cultures, families and individuals experience and store a plethora of mapping routines which are part of our mapping vocabulary. Our system of conventional metaphor is “alive” in the same sense that our system of grammatical and phonological (distribution and patterning of speech sounds in a language and of the tacit rules governing pronunciation.) rules is alive; namely it is constantly in use, automatically, and below the level of consciousness and our metaphor system is central to our understanding of experience and to the way we act on that understanding. ((Lakoff,G))

                Elegant architectural metaphors are those in which the big idea and the smallest of details echo and reinforce one another. (Sternberg, R. J).; Contemporary architects wrapping their parte in “green”, “myths” and eclectic images” are no less guilty than was their predecessors of the Bauhaus exuding asymmetry, tension and dissonance as were the classics and renaissance insisting on unity, symmetry and balance. So while architecture is the making of metaphors and architects are making metaphors their works, though metaphoric, are not themselves the metaphors but the shadow of the metaphor which exists elsewhere in the minds of both the creator and the user (Sternberg, R. J). Architects would not be known as artist nor should their works be known as works of art. Both their works are the “deep” while the readers deal with the “surface”; the true architectural artisan has deep and underlying metaphors predicated two and three dimensional space analysis, history, culture, class, anthropology, geography etc. They all are often underlying the surface of the choices of lighting, material, claddings, etc.

                 Vigorous aesthetic analysis would consider all of these axioms to realize the full enjoyment of the information contained in the work. Spatial representation in which local subspaces can be mapped into points of higher-order hyper-spaces and vice versa and that is possible because they have a common set of dimensions. (Sternberg, R. J).; In these hyper-spaces many architectural elements are fitted and combine to make a unity. It can be argued that the seen is not at al the metaphor but the transfers, bridges and connections being made apart from the building. In filling in the terms of the analogy lies the metaphor. Metaphor is used, understood, misused and misunderstood due to the inconsistencies, lack of derivatives and many unexplained changes in linguistics (Sadock, J. M) Likewise, the street talk that permeated my childhood was a string of “sayings, clichés, proverbs and European linguistic slang. This was contrasted by the poetry of songs and medieval literature. The architecture was the only source of my identity having consistency, reputation and allusions toward science, logic and consequence. I just know there was something out side of this circus.

            Although I could not derive what I saw I could document and retain the types and details of each type. However, Sadock’s examples and apologies only remind me that my work to derive the phenomenon of architecture as the making of metaphors is in its’ infancy, beginning to develop a vocabulary and understanding for the architectural profession and its’ allies. Difference between the indirect uses of metaphor versed the direct use of language to explain the world. (Sadock, J. M) In some circles this is referred to tangential thinking, that approaching a subject from its edges without getting to the point. Users can accept works which are vague, inane, and non-descript, evasive, and disorienting. Public housing, “ticky-tack” subdivisions, anonymous canyons of plain vanilla towers with countless nameless windows, offices with a sea of desks, nameless workstations and the daunting boredom of straight highways on a desert plain. This too applies to works of architecture which assembles a minimum and constructs the minimum in a stoic fashion considering the least needed to produce a work that fills the minimum economy of its commission.

              As such many architectural works escape the many and various realities settling for a minimum of expression of and otherwise prolific potential. There is a distinction and relationships between micro and macro metaphors and the way they can inform one another as the form of design may refer to its program, or a connector may reflect the concept of articulation as a design concept. (Sadock, J. M). “Whenever we talk about the metaphorical meaning of a word, expression, or sentence, we are talking about what a speaker might utter it to mean, in a way it that departs from what the word, expression or sentence actually means”. (Searle, John R).; A” problem of the metaphor concerns the relations between the word and sentence meaning, on the one hand, and speaker’s meaning or utterance meaning, on the other” With the exception of major corporate brands, churches, specialty building in architecture the examples is in infinite as most works designed are with no intended message, meaning or referent. Many are in the class of others of its types and generally convey their class while others are replicas and based on a model. Furthermore most architects have a design vocabulary which is foreign to the user. Conversely, in public buildings, the user’s expectations, use and expectations are foreign to the architect. At its best the architect may connect the vocabulary of his design to some exotic design theory which, results I a very beatiful and appealing building to which the user finds beautiful but has no idea about the intended making of the whole or its parts. But some how it works! After formulating a program of building requirements and getting agreement that the words and diagrams are approved by the client. If the architect built-work can meet this program and come to be the building the client intended is such an example of the work of architecture as a metaphor and metaphorical work. (They carry-over, bridge, and are each others advocate) Limited to meeting the program and the fulfilling the design contract says nothing about the unintended consequences of the building on the context and the way the metaphor outcome impacts for users, community and the general public.

              In some ways this is the job of municipal Departments of Community Services, town fathers, zoning boards and building departments and their building codes. All contribute to honing the metaphors and their outcomes which is this relationship of intended words to spoken words and the chasm between the two. We are told to think before we speak, picture what you are going to say then speak, still whatever we speak, in tone, emphasis, timing(meter) and pitch can carry its own meanings; this was also one of the final fields of investigation for my late mentor, Dr. Paul Weiss. Without apparent rhyme of reason metaphors of all arts have a way of recalling other metaphors of other times and places. In my mind I recall Brooklyn brick warehouses on Atlantic Ave. with turn of the century Ford trucks and men adorned in vests, white shirts and bow ties loading packages from those loading docks under large green metal canopies. The streets are coble stones. In the case of building metaphors it is the familiarity with not only the building- type, materials, context and convention but the architects, contactor’s and owner’s personas which increase the understanding of the metaphor. In the case of Dubai and other such contexts it is the lack of such familiarity and tolerance for the strange that makes the metaphor acceptable on face value. The metaphor is accepted yet not understood. As many beatiful things they are awesome, forbidding, and indicative of some greater condition as being a stranger in one’s own context.

              Buildings are perceived as cars manufactured by some idioms indicative of their species with little conscious relevance to the user’s context. It is very strange. Building designed for people who before (and even current) this generation found tents to be their habitat metaphor. Human cognition is fundamentally shaped by various processes of figuration”. “The ease with which many figurative utterances are comprehended are has often been attributed to the constraining influence of the context” ………..Including “the common ground of knowledge, beliefs, and attitudes recognized as being shared by speakers and listeners (architects and users(clients, public) ( Gibbs, Jr., R.W.) As it is with speakers architects, designers and makers “can’t help but employ tropes in every day conversation (design) because they conceptualize (design) much of their experience through the figurative schemes of metaphor (design). Explaining tropes (turn, twist, conceptual guises, and figurations). It explains the standard and traditional building types found in various contexts as the chalet in the Alps and the specific style of each found in each of the Alp’s counties and villages, etc. Psychological processes in metaphor comprehension and memory by Alan Paivio and Mary Walsh say that Susanne Langer writes that:” Metaphor is our most striking evidence of abstract seeing, of the power the human mind to use presentational symbols”. (Gibbs, Jr., R.W.) . Metaphor is an abbreviated simile to appreciate similarities and analogies which is called “appreciation” (Miller, G A). In psychology “appreciation” (Herbert (1898)) was a general term for those mental process whereby an attached experience is brought into relation with an already acquired and familiar conceptual system. (Encoding, mapping, categorizing, inference, assimilation and accommodation, attribution, etc). (Miller, G A).

               Likewise aesthetics’ view of beauty is not based on innate qualities, but rather on cultural specifics and individual interpretations. Miller explains how reading metaphors build an image in the mind. That is to say we “appreciate” what we already know. I have always contended that we do not learn anything we already do not know. We learn in terms of already established knowledge and concepts. We converse reiterating what we presume the other knows, otherwise the other party would not understand. The other party understands only because he already knows. The architect who assembles thousands of bits of information , resifts and converts form words to graphics and specification documents communicates the new proposed (the strange new thing) in terms of the known and familiar. The first recipients are the owner, building officials; contractors must read seeking confirmations of known and confirm its adherence to expectations. After its construction the users read familiar signs, apparatus, spaces, volumes, shapes and forms. The bridge carries over from one to another what is already known .Even the strange that becomes familiar are both known but not in the current relationship. For example when we apply a technology used on ships to a building or a room which is commonly associated with tombs as a bank, etc. Both are generally known but not in that specific context. We could not appreciate it if it were not known .It is what Weiss calls commonalties and is the selection between commonalties and differences that makes a metaphor. About understanding and discerning between what is” true in fact” and “true in the model” Miller says: Metaphors are, on a literal interpretation, incongruous, if not actually false-a robust sense of what is germane to the context and what is “true in fact” is necessary for the recognition of a metaphor, and hence general knowledge must be available to the reader (user, public).

                “We try to make the world that the author is asking us to imagine resemble the real world (as we know it) in as many respects as possible. Offices, bedrooms, lobbies, toilets, kitchens are such models which are built to specific situations in images of yet some other context. We know one from the other from the perception of the smallest detail to the overall layout. By analogy what Miller distinguishes between what the architect designed and what he thought are different. The architects of the Renaissance tried to resurrect the grandeur of the classic building they discovered and resurrected. The contemporary architect faces a vernacular of design principles which are reified in to conventional building types. The convention is the model whiles the specific application in the strange. Often new buildings are likened to the first model or the prototype. The reader knows the building type and is able to recognize the new version. (Miller, G A) Architectural making of metaphors is a matter of mapping, diagramming and combining to conclude the validity of combining and matching unlike materials, shapes, & systems. In this way any one of the metaphors and the whole system of bridging and carrying over is metaphoric. (Gentner, D) If one maps a rectangle and circle to a third you get a part square part circular odd shape. Map cold and hot and you get warm; map hotel, office, residential and shops and you get mixed use. (Gentner, D) The alchemists describe a system of triangulation I taught and applied at Pratt Institute which is as: “Metals were often held to consist of two components: mercury, which was fiery, active and male, and sulpher, which was watery, passive and female.

                  Thus the combination of the two metals could be viewed as a marriage. Metals and other minerals were often compared with heavenly bodies and their properties triangulated to produce a third. Not to let this arbitrary characterizations blemish the structure of this system it is valid to triangulate and in fact produce a metaphor where you find the property they both share.

               Renaissance European cities beguile their metaphor with such combinations known by their scale, cladding, décor, and entrees. Particularly charming are the German “guest houses ("gast hofs"), English family pubs, etc. New Towns and contemporary town centers are mixed use, multi zoned urban cores. It isn’t the referent where one is the other but where there is a similarity between like features of two things, on which a comparison may be based: the analogy between the heart and a pump. The commonality is apparent. They both share a similar characteristic. The hotel, residence , office and shop are joined by their convenience to that provide service to clients and their use of rooms, and a core of service, mountainous and housekeeping and supply. A small staff can support these businesses and there customers are compatible (Gentner, D) They all have a front of the house and back-of-the -house function (garbage, deliveries, maintenance, etc) in many citers lacks zoning regulations have alo9owed such mixed uses zones to still exist to day. Seeing these metaphors is a part of the fabric and character of neighborhoods. (Gentner, D) Metaphor is reasoning using abstract characters whereas reason by analogy is a straight forward extension of its use in commonplace reasoning. (Gentner, D)

                    All this to say and as if there was a choice that architects have a choice where to make a new building by analogy or by metaphor. Analogies may be the ticky-tacks, office building, church, school building, fire station analogies to a first model verses an abstraction of a program into a new prototype. Is the analogy any less a work of architecture? Or do we only mean that works of architecture are works of art when they make abstractions? (Boyd, R). .Aesthetic judgments bridge some principle or prior experience to a secondary subject. Architects design by translating concepts into two dimensional graphics that which ultimately imply a multidimensional future reality. She tests the horizontal and vertical space finding accommodation and commonality of adjacency, connectivity and inclusiveness. (Boyd, R). Metaphors simply impart their commonplace not necessity to their similarity or analogous. (Boyd, R). This kind of metaphor simply adds information to the hearer which was not otherwise available which explains the built metaphor that is neither analogous not abstractly common but works, is unique and serves a purpose. (Boyd, R).

                We absorb new knowledge on the shoulders of old experiences. [(Pylyshyn, Z W). about Cognition to justify Socrates “learning as recollecting” Consider new concepts as being characterized in terms of old ones (plus logical conjunctives)” As William J. Gordon [7] points out we make the strange familiar by talking about one thing in terms of another. Pylyshyn: "On the other hand, if it were possible to observe and to acquire new “knowledge” without the benefit of these concepts (conceptual schemata (an underlying organizational pattern or structure; conceptual framework) which are the medium of thought), then such (Pylyshyn, Z W). The art implicitly has gathered the information and organized it in way that given the right apriori vocabulary, codes definitions and signal and sign cognitions one can read the message in one way or another depending on the individual and the variety of individual perceptions. Buildings, artifacts, products with embedded (encrypted) workings can be read, learned, assimilated, connected and either by epiphany or Pavolivain stimulus –response known. Climbing the stairs of a pyramid in Mexico City or a fire stair in a high rise is essentially the same except for the impact of its context and what the stair connects (create and base) and the object on which the stair ascends and descends. The conditions, ideals and goals are very different while most of the operation is the same. In this way you can say that non-architecture can be identified as teaching nothing. (Pylyshyn, Z W).

          Pulling from three dimensional and two dimensional means and methods, from asymmetrical and symmetrical, and from spatial and volumetric design principles the architect assembles metaphor metaphorically by associating and carrying-over these principles applying to the program at hand to lift and stretch the ideas into space and across the range of disassociated ideas and concepts making a new and very strange metaphor unlike anything ever created yet filled with thousands of familiar signs and elements that make it work . (Pylyshyn, Z W). Just as practice makes perfect for the concert pianist, opera singer, ballerina, etc so is it for the architect and in aesthetics for the critique and the reader. However, having said this reader is at imitate disadvantage except for the natives of a particular location. Little old ladies in the tiniest Italian village can tell in the minutest detail all about every building, street and area. She has learned and passed on the “knowledge” from her ancestors and is as trained as its creators but in a totally different way. Hers is the act of perception and reader who must recreate and challenge her memory and recollections. She does not have to work at design but at reliving and imagining the design process to find the details and the whole of the building and its social, political and chronological context. Her explanations will include great joy, violent emotions, dis-tastes and rejections of the owners and authors. Her experience of the metaphor will be different from that of the creators both about the same work. (Pylyshyn, Z W).

                “The difference between literal and metaphorical description lies primarily in such pragmatic consideration as (1) the stability, referential specificity, and general acceptance of terms: and (2) the perception, shared by those who use the terms, that the resulting description characterizes the world as it really is, rather than being a convenient way of talking about it, or a way of capturing superficial resemblances”. (Pylyshyn, Z W). Pylyshyn asks:” What distinguishes a metaphor from its complete explication”? (In the case of architecture the entire set of contract documents, program, etc).” Pylyshyn answers: “I n this ways of all the arts, architecture is the most profound in that it combines and confirms the secular (of this time), “how things really are” with the gestalt of personal, social, community and private importance. If art is the making of metaphors and it has no real use then how significant is architecture with both “reality” and fantasy/ imagination combined and confirmed by its very existence.

                   The very real existence of a work of art that bespeaks of life and times, exists and is accessible and in our contexts is itself a metaphor of great significance and satisfaction; where I a building it would look like this metaphor. The metaphor expresses a value common to both; both are both real and ideas at the same time. The metaphor is the bridge and confirmation of art in the world, life in the flesh and flesh become ideas.

            Works of art are extents which are expected to have aesthetic; and aesthetic experience; and ones which, in and of themselves are expected to be aesthetic. That is objects to provide the context for an aesthetic experience, which confuses when we refer to places , buidlings, cloths,and applied arts and the normal and natural environments (even foods)  thatr may result in aesthetic. Architecture is an extreme reification from notion in both creator and reader of materials and idea. “Metaphor induces a (partial) equivalence between two known phenomenons; a literal account describes the phenomenon in authentic terms in which it is seen”. (Pylyshyn, Z W). Socially speaking, worldly people that work in offices, dress, and then behave the way they do, for example, if they reported to work in a manufacturing warehouse? Their scenario of the behavior and the metaphor would not correspond. (Pylyshyn, Z W). “Radically new knowledge results from a change in modes of representation of knowledge, whereas a comparative metaphor occurs within the existing representations which serve to render the comparison sensible.

              The comparative level of metaphor might allow for extensions of already existing knowledge, but would not provide a new form of understanding. (Oshlag, Ra S)When visiting new cities in another country one is immediately confronted with metaphors which create similarities as interactive and comparative as we seek to find similarities and differences with what we already known in our home context. Visiting, sketching and writing about over seventy European cities I noted the character and ambience of each and the differences between one and another. I drew so many vignettes of buildings and cityscapes noting the metaphor of each. The visitor (this is my word) may “well be acquiring one of the constitutive or residual metaphors of the place (this is my word) at the same time; same metaphor, different experiences. (Oshlag, Ra S) Metaphors have a way of extending our capacities for communications. ( Sticht T.G.) As most artists their language is beyond speech and to the peculiar craft of their art of which their practice and exercise develops new capacity and opportunity to teach and express thought outside of the linguistics but is nevertheless perhaps as valuable and worthy. “The mnemonic (intended to assist the memory) function of metaphor as expressed by Ortony’s vividness thesis also points to the value of metaphor as a tool for producing durable learning from unenduiring speech” ( Sticht T.G.)

                   Architects both compose the program and reify its contents from words to diagrams and diagrams to two dimensional graphics and three dimensional models to reify and bring- out (educate) the user’s mind and fulfillment of unspoken and hidden needs. Needs which may or may not have been programmed and intended; the metaphor is the final resolution until it is built and used. Then it is subject to further tests of time, audience, markets, trends, fashions, social politics, demographic shifts, economics, and cultural changes. The aesthetics of the process and the product are both metaphoric and a metaphor. Works Cited

Boyd, Richard; 1.14.0 26. Metaphor and theory change: What is” metaphor” a metaphor for?

Conrad, Ulrich; 1.3 10. In Programs and Manifestoes on 20th-Century Architecture about Glasarchitektur Ulrich Conrad'

Fraser, Bruce; 1.10.0 22. Interpretation of novel metaphors

Gentner, Dedre ; 1.13.0 25 The shift from metaphor to analogy in Western science

Gibbs, Jr., Raymond W.; 1.9.0 21. Process and products in making sense of tropes

Glucksberg, Sam; 1.12.0 24. How metaphors work by Sam Glucksberg and Boaz Keysar

Gordon, W.J.J. 7. Metaphorical way of knowing by William J.J Gordon: William J.J. Gordon began formulating the Synectics method in 1944 with a series ... William J. J. Gordon, The Metaphorical Way of Learning and Knowing (Cambridge, ... William J.J. Gordon in his book The Metaphorical Way of Learning and Knowing, Synectics asks participants to solve problems by thinking in analogies--to identify ways in which one pattern or situation is like or similar to another totally unrelated pattern or situation. Synectics uses comparisons such as analogies and metaphors to stimulate associations, developed by George M. Prince; Gordon was one of the original speakers at the Yale lecture series.

Jeziorski, Michael; 1.13.0 25 The shift from metaphor to analogy in Western science

Kuhn, Thomas S.; 1.15.0 27 Metaphor in science by Thomas S. Kuhn Keysar, Boaz; 1.12.0

Lakoff, George; 1.4 11. The contemporary theory of metaphor by George Lakoff

Mayer, Richard E.; 1.17.0 29. The instructive metaphor: Metaphoric aids to students’ understanding of science by Richard E. Mayer Miller,

George A.; 1.11.0 23. Images and models, similes and metaphors by George A. Miller

Nigro, Georgia; 1.5.0 17. Metaphor, induction, and social policy: The convergence of macroscopic and microscopic views by Robert J. Sternberg, Roger Tourangeau, and Georgia Nigro Ortony,Andrew;1.0 1. Metaphor and Thought: Second Edition Edited by Andrew Ortony: School of Education and social Sciences and Institute for the learning Sciences: North Western University Published by Cambridge University Press First pub: 1979 Second pub: 1993 Oshlag, Rebecca S.; 1.18.0 30. Metaphor and learning Petrie,

Hugh G; 1.18.0 30. Metaphor and learning

Pylyshyn, Zeon W.; 1.16.0 28. Metaphorical imprecision and the “top down” research strategy Is Board of Governors Professor of Cognitive Science at Rutgers Center for Cognitive Science. He is the author of Seeing and Visualizing: It's Not what You Think (2003) and Computation and Cognition: toward a Foundation for Cognitive Science (1984), both published by The MIT Press, as well as over a hundred scientific papers on perception, attention, and the computational theory of mind.

Reddy. Michael J.; 1.2 9. The conduit metaphor: A case of frame conflict in our language about language: by Michael J. Reddy.

Rumelhart, David E.; 1.7.0 19. Some problems with the emotion of literal meanings Sadock, Jerrold M.; 1.6.0 18. Figurative speech and linguistics by Jerrold M. Sadock

Schon, Donald A. ; 1.1 6. 1.1 Generative metaphor: A perspective on problem-setting in social policy: by Donald A. Schon Searle, John R.; 1.8.0 20. Metaphor by John R. Searle Sternberg, Robert J.; 1.5.0 17. Metaphor, induction, and social policy: The convergence of macroscopic and microscopic views by Robert J. Sternberg, Roger Tourangeau, and Georgia Nigro

Thomas G. Sticht; 1.19.0 31. Educational uses of metaphor Tourangeau, Roger; 1.5.0 17. Metaphor, induction, and social policy: The convergence of macroscopic and microscopic views by Robert J. Sternberg, Roger Tourangeau, and Georgia Nigro

Weiss,Paul; 1.4.11 8. Paul Weiss: Born in 1901, Being and Other Realities (1995) ; Emphatics, (2000); Surrogates," published by Indiana University Press.

Zarefsky,David 5. Argumentation: The Study of Effective Reasoning, 2nd Edition; by Professor Dr. David Zarefsky of Northwestern University and published by The Teaching Company, 2005 of Chantilly, Virginia


1. Art is the intentional and skillful act and/or product applying a technique and differes from natural but pleasing behaviors and useful or decorative products in their intent and application of a develoed technique and skill with that technique. Art is not limited to fields, prsons or institutions as science, goevernment, securitry, architecutre, engineering, administration, construction, design, decoratiing, sports, etc. On the other hand in each there are both natural and artistic where metaphors (conceptual and/technical) make the difference, art is something perfected and well done in that field. For example, the difference between an artistic copy and the original is the art of originality and authorship in that it documents a creative process lacking in the copy.

2. The first lectures "Architecture as the Making of Metaphors" were organized and conducted by Barie Fez-Barringten near the Art and Architecture building at the Museum of Fine Arts Yale University 11/02/67 until 12/04/67. The guest speakers were: Paul Weiss, William J. Gordon, Christopher Tunnard, Vincent Scully, Turan Onat, Kent Bloomer, Peter Millard, Robert Venturi, Charles Moore, Forrest Wilson, and John Cage.

3. American painter Irving Kriesberg was born in 1919. He studied painting in America at The Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Chicago from 1938-1941 and later in Mexico from 1942-1946. Kriesberg began his interest in art as a cartoonist in high school in Chicago. In the 1930's he spent many days sketching the work of the great masters Titian & Rembrandt when visiting The Art Institute of Chicago. In the late 1930's he came under the influence of modern art via School of Paris exhibitions prominently exhibited in the museums in Chicago.

4. Main Currents in Modern Thought/Center for Integrative Education Sep.-Oct. 1971, Vol. 28 No.1, New Rochelle, New York

Researched Publications: Refereed and Peer-reviewed Journals: "monographs":

Barie Fez-Barringten; Associate professor Global University

1. "Architecture the making of metaphors" Main Currents in Modern Thought/Center for Integrative Education; Sep.-Oct. 1971, Vol. 28 No.1, New Rochelle, New York.

2."Schools and metaphors" Main Currents in Modern Thought/Center for Integrative Education Sep.-Oct. 1971, Vol. 28 No.1, New Rochelle, New York.

3."User's metametaphoric phenomena of architecture and Music": “METU” (Middle East Technical University: Ankara, Turkey): May 1995" Journal of the Faculty of Architecture

4."Metametaphors and Mondrian: Neo-plasticism and its' influences in architecture" 1993 Available on since 2008

5. "The Metametaphor of architectural education", North Cypress, Turkish University. December, 1997

6."Mosques and metaphors" Unpublished,1993

7."The basis of the metaphor of Arabia" Unpublished, 1994

8."The conditions of Arabia in metaphor" Unpublished, 1994

9. "The metametaphor theorem" Architectural Scientific Journal, Vol. No. 8; 1994 Beirut Arab University.

10. "Arabia’s metaphoric images" Unpublished, 1995

11."The context of Arabia in metaphor" Unpublished, 1995

12. "A partial metaphoric vocabulary of Arabia" “Architecture: University of Technology in Datutop; February 1995 Finland

13."The Aesthetics of the Arab architectural metaphor" “International Journal for Housing Science and its applications” Coral Gables, Florida.1993

14."Multi-dimensional metaphoric thinking" Open House, September 1997: Vol. 22; No. 3, United Kingdom: Newcastle uponTyne

15."Teaching the techniques of making architectural metaphors in the twenty-first century.” Journal of King Abdul Aziz University Engg...Sciences; Jeddah: Code: BAR/223/0615:OCT.2.1421 H. 12TH EDITION; VOL. I and “Transactions” of Cardiff University, UK. April 2010

16. “Word Gram #9” Permafrost: Vol.31 Summer 2009 University of Alaska Fairbanks; ISSN: 0740-7890; page 197

17. "Metaphors and Architecture." October, MIT

18. “Metaphor as an inference from sign”; University of Syracuse Journal of Enterprise Architecture; November 2009: and nomnated architect of the year in speical issue of Journal of Enterprise Architecture.Explainging the unique relationship between enterprise and classic building architecture.

19. “Framing the art vs. architecture argument”; Brunel University (West London); BST: Vol. 9 no. 1: Body, Space & Technology Journal: Perspectives Section

20. “Urban Passion”: October 2010; Reconstruction & “Creation”; June 2010; by C. Fez-Barringten;;

21. “An architectural history of metaphors”: AI & Society: (Journal of human-centered and machine intelligence) Journal of Knowledge, Culture and Communication: Pub: Springer; London; AI & Society located in University of Brighton, UK; AI & Society. ISSN (Print) 1435-5655 - ISSN (Online) 0951-5666 : Published by Springer-Verlag;; 6 May 2010 Paper copy: AIS Vol. 26.1. Feb. 2011; Online ISSN 1435-5655; Print ISSN 0951-5666; DOI 10.1007/s00146-010-0280-8; : Volume 26, Issue 1 (2011), Page 103.

22. “Does Architecture Create Metaphors?; G.Malek; Cambridge; August 8,2009 Pgs 3-12 (4/24/2010)

23. “Imagery or Imagination”:the role of metaphor in architecture:Ami Ran (based on Architecture:the making of metaphors); :and Illustration:”A Metaphor of Passion”:Architecture oif Israel 82.AI;August2010pgs.83-87.

24. “The soverign built metaphor”: monograph converted to Power Point for presentation to Southwest Florida Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. 2011

25.“Architecture:the making of metaphors”: The Book; published: 2012 by Cambridge Scholars Publishing 12 Back Chapman Street Newcastle upon Tyne NE6 2XX United Kingdom Edited by Edward Richard Hart, 0/2 249 Bearsden Road Glasgow G13 1DH UK 


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