High and low: Contemporary architecture and popular culture (Elvis Presley, Tennessee)
Nichols, Steven E.
Master of Architecture
In America, the debate between high modern art and certain aspects of popular culture (most often referred to as kitsch) has been raging since the 1960's. Now, in the 80's and 90's, the dialogue has been extended to include the realm of architecture as well as art. The role of the serious questioning architect is becoming more and more important as he/she attempts to better negotiate and integrate the two coexistant factions through the use of irony, collage, discontinuity and super-adjacency. The vehicle of this architectural discussion is The Elvis Presley Museum and Memorial; a proposed edifice that will be used to help define the evolution of a new, hybrid building form of the late twentieth century, the pop museum. The goal is to design, from a critical and intellectual standpoint, a contemporary museum that will allow for and embody a multiplicity of levels of meaning in order to speak about this subject matter and even more importantly, allow the subject matter to speak for itself. Obviously, at the same time, it must also functionally and aesthetically appeal to the visitors for which it was designed.
Architecture; Cultural anthropology