The Case for a Re-Evaluation of Deconstruction and Design: Against Derrida, Eisenman and their Choral Works

Leon Cruickshank

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With the reaction to the death of Jacques Derrida receding, the time seems right to re-evaluate his impact on design and in particular to examine how the concept of deconstruction, propagated in his name and coming from his work building on the ideas of Martin Heidegger were misrepresented when related to design by many people including the explicitly deconstructive architects, including even Derrida.

This paper will argue for deconstruction as a stimulating provocation with utility for designers, but it will argue against many of the actions, practices and ideas historically associated with deconstruction in design and the wider theory. This will be achieved through an exploration of the collaborative project undertaken by the architect Peter Eisenman and Jacques Derrida — Choral Works and the theoretical micro-landscape on which the project sits.

ISSUE 3 | April 2010 | 07/07 | Past Radical Propositions