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Title: Theoretical architecture in Nihei Tsutomu's Blame! & the Agency that shapes our cities: an exploration of the comic medium
Authors: Ferron, Kody
Keywords: Comic medium;theoretical architecture;Nihei Tsutomu;BLAME!
Issue Date: 13-Apr-2021
Abstract: The core elements of this thesis are drawing, the comic medium, and theoretical architecture. Through an investigation of the comic medium, this thesis explores the architectural implications of a city, situated in a fictional world, without; orientation, time, or human intervention. By examining a work of theoretical architecture, the manga BLAME!, this thesis examines how the drawn medium critiques the agency that shapes our contemporary cities, shaped by the forces of expansionist, economy-based development. Authored by the architecturally trained Japanese manga artist Nihei Tsutomu, BLAME! follows the story of a silent hero, Killy, as he meanders through the infinite expanses of a steel and concrete labyrinth known only as The City. This city, one built from the mind of a machine and developed without any comprehensible purpose, has expanded for tens of thousands of years beyond control. In this dystopian future, Nihei explores the theoretical architecture of a universe wherein expansionism alone drives the development of cities, and where the practical application of building has distorted beyond recognition. The world of BLAME! is full of antagonists who stand as impediments to our heroes’ cause. In this future, the will of a sentient machine governs The City’s laws and executes its orders. Killy’s journey, a pretext to scower the expanses of The City, is to find the Net Terminal Gene. The Net Terminal Gene is what stands between the inhabitants of The City, and freedom. Cibo, a highly decorated scientist from whom Killy finds help along his journey, may have the solution to halting the chaotic expansion of The City, and finding a way to escape it. Through the use of drawing and narrative, Nihei Tsutomu explores the consequences of a city void of orientation, time, scale, human intervention, and natural phenomena. While the reality the artist/author explores may be a fictional, future dystopia, much of its story parallels the contemporary condition of the growing development within our own cities.
Appears in Collections:Architecture - Master's Theses
Master's Theses

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