The Other Place: Building A Retreat Of One's Own
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How is one to ground themselves in an increasingly virtual and abstract world? The Other Place offers a complementary environment to daily life. Here one can establish the necessary critical distance from the conditions which define day to day life, and gain the perspective required to position one’s self within, or against, these conditions. Interpretations of The Other Place, beginning with the ideology of Otium as expressed through the Roman villa, continue today, varying widely across cultures, regions and individuals. The Other Place, then, can be understood as representative of characteristics that are at once general, and quite specific, reflective of broad contextual considerations, and the particularities of its occupant. The rich and complex process of designing and building a retreat of one’s own, in the tradition of the Ontario Cottage, on an island property three hours northeast of Toronto is used to engage with, in a rich and tangible way, the architecture and understanding of the retreat as a complementary environment necessary in contemporary life. The act of building leads to an examination of how building and self are inseparable. Building, then, becomes a means of architectural and self understanding. As The Other Place facilitates a wholeness in contemporary existence found through its experience, so too is a wholeness in architectural education gained in the pragmatic relationship between theory and practice found in moving from the studio to building site and applying knowledge gained from one to the other.
Cite this work
Brock Benninger (2017). The Other Place: Building A Retreat Of One's Own. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/11667