Lebbeus Woods

Systems In Crisis

Architects are today routinely indoctrinated against the dumb box. Even advertising urges us to “think outside the box.” Why? Because it is thought we all hate the box for being too dumb, too boring, and we want to escape it. If we do escape, by buying the advertised product, we usually find ourselves inside another dumb box populated by boring people just like us. It is clearly possible to live an extraordinary life inside a dumb box. Question: is it possible to lead an extraordinary life in anything other than a dumb box?


In Hollywood you don’t produce a product, you create a process – it’s always about process. So, a screenplay is a process; a film is a process. You can’t look at it as an art. Anyway, these are very intriguing mediums because for me the drawings are about ideas only. They’re not about drawing. I mean if they were about drawing I’d get very bored. It’s about communicating ideas – it’s about finding ideas. Use the drawing to find an idea, and then develop it.

The scar is a deeper level of reconstruction that fuses the new and the old, reconciling, coalescing them, without compromising either one in the name of some contextual form of unity. The scar is a mark of pride and of honor, both for what has been lost and what has been gained. It cannot be erased, except by the most cosmetic means. It cannot be elevated beyond what it is, a mutant tissue, the precursor of unpredictable regenerations. To accept the scar is to accept existence. Healing is not an illusory, cosmetic process, but something that -by articulating differences- both deeply divides and joins together.

All quotes by Lebbeus Woods, culled from the ever-giving Internet.

Got a chance to see a wonderful exhibit on Lebbeus Woods at SFMOMA this year before it shut its doors for renovations.

Easily one of the best exhibits I’ve seen.

This site reviews the SFMOMA exhibit really well, in Italian no less – check it out and don’t forget your trusty translator bot.

Designboom also gave the SFMOMA exhibit some love.

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