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Parment, U. (2000). What Is Architecture About? Interview with Jan Henriksson, Professor of Architecture. Int. Forum Psychoanal., 9(1-2):19-27.

(2000). International Forum of Psychoanalysis, 9(1-2):19-27

What Is Architecture About? Interview with Jan Henriksson, Professor of Architecture

Ulla-Britt Parment, B.A

Jan Henriksson, Professor of Architecture at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and member of the project-group of the issue “Psychoanalysis Meets Art and Architecture”, elaborates in this interview on different perspectives and ideas about architecture, which for him essentially is a contradictory and open concept with no a priori. Architecture belongs to the field of moral laws or ethics. The instrumental part deals with building and buildings. The working process includes research, penetration and interpretation of which the latter is the most interesting and powerful, not seldom connected with existential questions. The training of the students includes not only the instrumental part but still more important is the training of their critical thinking, to enable them to gain the insight that that which is the truth, looks like the truth no longer is the truth. To be given a lot of freedom during the training helps the students to find an inner compass, an inner bearing which will be decisive in their work. Conflicts are seen as vitalizing and the alternation between order and chaos as fertilizing for creative thinking and acting to take place. The need to express ourselves takes us all somewhere. For Jan Henriksson it is all about processes where different parts interrelate; that is the heart of the matter. The need for architects today to express themselves in words is increasing, to look behind things and to think and reflect about their own work and that of other architects.

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