Peter EisenmanAmerican (Newark, New Jersey, 1932)
House VI, Cornwall, Connecticut
Eisenman, an architect, educator, and theoretician, sought to develop a form of architecture not based solely on function. Stimulated by the formal structure of language, he became interested in a parallel approach to architecture in which its practical aspects (function and context) would be set aside in deference to its basic vocabulary: beams, walls, and stairs.
From the late 1970s to the 1980s, Eisenman demonstrated his theories in a series of eleven houses. Numbered rather than named, they exemplify his investigation into the nature and meaning of architectural form.
Through a deliberate process of transformation, House VI moves beyond a basic cube to a more complex and divided volume. The design of the building emerges from a sequence of developments (as shown in drawings like this) based on well-defined rules, just as one makes words from letters and sentences from words. In Eisenman's experiment, the process of design becomes the object of the design.