The Deconstructivist movement grew from the writings of a French philosopher by the name of Jacques Derrida. The central idea behind deconstructivism seems to be to question the assumptions that are made every second of our life. It approaches building design by attempting to view architecture in its bits and pieces, dismantling the basic elements of architecture. Deconstructivist buildings appear to be unreadable, random and often quite strange. The architects of these buildings aim to design without any contextual reference and no reference to anything else.
Many deconstructivist architects, like Meier and Tschumi, use various elements, like clashing beams, from the Russian constructivist period around the 1920’s. In purely architectural terms this quotation of forms is the only link between deconstructivism and constructivism. However, there are more similarities in the thinking behind deconstructivism.
Deconstructivist precedents can be seen not as much in completed constructivist buildings but more in their sketches and competition designs, such as, Rodchenko’s Experimental design for a kiosk (1919), the Vesnin brothers’ Palace of Labour (1923) and Stage sets designed by tatlin.
Deconstructivism aims to remove the building from relatedness with itself. An architecture that would undo the very notion of the building as a solid physical emplacement carrying certain embedded cultural meanings.
As Peter Eisenman said, “While a house today must still provide shelter, it does not need to symbolize or romanticize its sheltering function; to the contrary such symbols are today meaningless and merely nostalgic.”