1st Edition

A Language of Contemporary Architecture An Index of Topology and Typology

By Rafael Luna, Dongwoo Yim Copyright 2023
    344 Pages 182 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    344 Pages 182 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    As a way to understand the contemporary project in architecture, this book provides an index of ideas, theories, projects, and definitions that string into a methodology for evaluating the contemporary language of architecture described as “contemporism” through a review of topology (form) and typology (system and elements).

    The contemporary project has been trying to answer the postmodern question of how to move beyond modernism through a thread of architectural styles that tried to respond to deficiencies from the modern promise and contextual changes. Yet, the question remains, should this ongoing struggle to move beyond modernism be a stylistic battle? Has the present architectural practice ever left the modernist tendencies, and is there a structure for a contemporary language in architecture? This book presents a collection of highly illustrated projects that have worked under these parameters to break away from modernism in order to present a holistic integration of topology and typology as a language for “contemporism.” The index is illustrated with individual spreads, which can be read sequentially or independently, and encourages the reader to make their own connections. It also includes interviews and contributions from Toyo Ito, Anthony Vidler, Ben van Berkel, Christian Kerez, and Greg Lynn.

    This book is essential reading for undergraduate and graduate students in architecture.

    PROLOGUE Toyo Ito  INTRODUCTION by PRAUD with guest essay by Anthony Vidler  INDEX Part 1 Topology  INDEX Part 2 Typology  TO/TY as METHODOLOGY Concluding analysis and speculations.


    PRAUD was founded by Dongwoo Yim and Rafael Luna in 2010, with offices in Boston and Seoul. Their theoretical investigations and criticism of the contemporary language in architecture spans over a decade of academic appointments, completed international projects, awarded competitions, and multiple publications and exhibition roles. This led them to win awards such as the Architectural League Prize in 2013, the DAM book award, and exhibited internationally at MoMA, Venice Biennale, and Seoul Biennale on several occasions. They curated the “Cities Exhibition” at the 2019 Seoul Biennale, co-directed the Future School Summer School program for the 2020 Venice Biennale Korean Pavilion, and served as guest editors for the October 2021 issue of AD magazine entitled “Production Urbanism: the Meta-Industrial City.”

    Dongwoo Yim is the co-founder of PRAUD and an assistant professor at Hongik University Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Design. He received his master’s degree at Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree at Seoul National University and is currently a Ph.D. candidate from Università della Svizzera Italiana. He is the winner of the Architectural League Prize 2013. He is the author of "Pyongyang, and Pyongyang After,” and “(Un) Precedented Pyongyang,” and co-author of the “North Korean Atlas” and "I Want to be METROPOLITAN.” His works have been exhibited worldwide including the Golden Lion-winning Korean Pavilion in Venice Biennale 2014, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and DNA Galerie in Berlin. Dongwoo has also held academic positions at the Rhode Island School of Design from 2011 through 2017, and visiting assistant professor at Washington University in St. Louis in 2016. He was the curator of Pyongyang Sallim and Letters to the Mayor: Seoul + Pyongyang in the 2017 Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism and the co-curator of the Cities Exhibition in the 2019 SBAU.

    Rafael Luna is the co-founder of the architecture firm PRAUD and Senior Lecturer at the University of Technology Sydney. He received a Master of Architecture from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2010), and his Ph.D. in Architecture from L’Accademia di architettura dell’Università della Svizzera italiana (2022). Luna is the award winner of the Architectural League Prize 2013, and his work has been exhibited at the MoMA, Venice Biennale, and Seoul Biennale. Luna was a co-curator of the Cities Exhibition for the 2019 Seoul Biennale. He has professional experience from the offices of Toyo Ito and Associates, KPF, Ateliers Jean Nouvel, Martha Schwartz Partners, dECOI, Sasaki Associates, and Machado and Silvetti. He served as an assistant professor at Hanyang University from 2018 to 2022, previously teaching at the Rhode Island School of Design. His writings have been published in journals such as G+L, Topos, MONU, SPACE, IntAR Journal, and he was a guest co-editor for AD magazine’s September 2021 issue “Production Urbanism: The Meta-Industrial City.” He is the co-author of “I Want to Be Metropolitan” and the “North Korean Atlas.”