Humanist machines: Daniel Libeskind's "Three Lessons in Architecture"

Ersi Ioannidou

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapter


Daniel Libeskind constructs Three Lessons in Architecture for the Venice Biennale 1985. The project consists of three large machines; The Reading Machine, The Memory Machine and The Writing Machine. Each machine embodies a way of thinking and making architecture within the tradition of humanism. Libeskind directs this experiment with the belief that the humanist means of architectural production although present today are at their final stage; the era of the architecture of humanism and its respective technology of the mechanical machine is ending. Libeskind’s project questions the present state of architecture by examining its past and anticipates a transition into a post-humanist era. ‘Humanist Machines’ is a critical analysis of Three Lessons in Architecture. It argues that Libeskind’s ‘post-humanist’ project re-articulates the role of humanism in design by bridging the gap between theorising and making. Thus it proposes a template for architectural research which combines intellectual inquiry into the humanities and design creativity.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe humanities in architectural design: a contemporary and historical perspective
EditorsS. Bandyopadhyay, J. Lomholt, N. Temple, R. Tobe
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)9780415551144
Publication statusPublished - 12 Feb 2010


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