Post 455 -by Gautam Shah
A space, a gap, an interlude, an entr’acte, all distinguish the continuity. It manifests in time and space. In architecture, human settlements, art, performances, expressions and communication, substantial content is of temporal and spatial interventions. The miss-out is intentional as well as circumstantial. The intentional gap extends the tempo or intensity to longer duration or stretch. The circumstantial gaps are required for inhalation and exhalation time, shifting from one tune to another, visual perception, and sensorial reactivity. The gap is just large enough to prepare for the subsequent reflection.
In Architecture the interludes help spread the mass. The spatial interludes are in the form of distance between buildings or sections of it, chowks, setbacks and offsets. The temporal interventions relate to time and so movement, such as time required for image grabbing, visual scanning, travel time clues such as milestones, scaling through perspective, and movement attests such as slopes (accelerations) and rises (decelerators). Building forms are gravity stacked and inverted, and offer different type of spatial interrelationship with the earth. Buildings are massed, where the adjoining mass is repetition (same), smaller or larger, but spatial connection is within a bridging distance. There occur three types of masses. The two end ones are real, whereas the nothingness in the middle is an ethereal one. The ephemeral bridging is aided by visual clues such as proportions, form, texture, colour, directionality and the context of perception (perspective, framing, referencing clues, etc.).
At micro level architectonic elements occupy the building spaces and surfaces by forming hierarchies, orders, series, sequences and harmonics. In all these the intervening element could be another object, but it is the space that reveals the underlying sub-face. The intervening elements, such as openings, columns, corners, shapes, projections and recesses, textures, colours, light-shade and other transgressions create the time and space matrices.
Human settlements have interludes formed between built spaces. The form, purpose and its bridges with built spaces, however, well planned, never persist. It changes with little innovations here and there. But the relationship between something (engagement) and nothing creates the settlement. Chowks, plazas, streets, roads, gardens, playgrounds, cemeteries, are juxtaposed against the built spaces. Each window of the house offers a different view. Each porch has a unique setting. Each dwelling has unique set of sounds, smells, air and feel due to varied intervening spaces.
Artworks are select perspectives that reveal the connect between environment, buildings and people. The spaces between them are modulated by colour, size, depth of view, referential elements, framing and story content. In primitive cave-art it is the space between them and the form of the figures that create the stage. A stage, where each element is sited and interconnected.
Expressions are intentional as well involuntary. Expressions occur through gestures and postures, and both of which require some transition time to shift from one to another. The intervening period with nothing is also a form of expression. One can stretch or shorten the period and modulate the expression.
Communication is also a form of expression where the intention is to convey information and ‘impress’ the receiver. It may happen ‘in-person’ or in ‘absentia’. In absentia communications such as telephony, audio-video recordings, modulate the scope of expression. To suppress the data band width requirements the quality is depressed into narrow channels. But in spite of these, the spatial and temporal interludes are not affected. In some long distance communications the transition of up and down signals occur on the same channel, and so one misses the ‘quick-response’ or feedback experience.