The Sympathy Of Things

Get the book.

This morning’s coffee brought with it a TLS review by Matthew Reynolds of Spuybroek’s new The Sympathy Of Things: Ruskin and the ecology of design. Spuybroek is a prominent new media architect, and here he apparently bases a theory of design and new media on John Ruskin, “reconfigured as a prophet of computer-aided design,” and specifically on Ruskin’s idea of Gothic variability as argued in The Stones Of Venice.

Why aren’t we talking about this? The new media twitter stream, the poor substitute for the lost (to us) art conversations of weblog conversation, is mostly occupied with pleas to read one’s latest little gallery piece. Instead of criticism, we’re asserting nonsense histories (electronic literature began in 2001? that’s what the University of Colorado believes, apparently) or remembering all the cool parties we had back in the day.