Yona Friedman, L’ordine complicato. Come costruire un’immagine, Quodlibet, Macerata, Italy, 2011. Review by Fabrizio Scrivano (link to the complete Italian text)
To read this book it is best to have no specific preconceptions. These pages comprise speculation, random notes, personal views, private ways of imagining the world, reflections (sometimes contradictory), exercises of fictional science, presenting, as suggested by the author himself, an exercise on the problem of representation. This exercise proves to reveals far more useful truths by reflecting on the systems of representation.
You may feel that Friedman’s drawings (in particular his ‘cartoons’ derived from his explanatory manuals) are an attempt to make a clearer and more appealing argument. But they also seem to represent a boyish wonderment, for they evoke a small struggle between innocence and awareness, not offering any explanation nor claims to the truth, just a personal line of reasoning and conclusion.
In Friedman’s view man sees only parts, never the whole. His view is analytical and only allows him to identify portions sections, fragments of space, objects or events that may occur. This involves a certain freedom or variety of sequential processes: they are no more real than other sequences, but they are just various complicated orders with a wide margin of relativism within which it is possible to think of the coexistence of experiences and different styles without contradiction. Friedman speaks of erratic space, causing you us not to make many few predictions or maybe even none at all, because each experience is subject to this temporal order, i.e. the sequence in which the phenomenon is perceived.
It is very acceptable conceivable to consider all the parts of the book as a mounting building kit, a narrative that should be read without too much anxiety eagerness to prove anything or to find anything in particular, In fact but rather, to perceive it as expansions or story lines, with a certain degree of interactivity. Where he designed the relationship between space and view viewpoint, perspective and between time and consciousness, you we may find an antecedent of some thought, some observation, some hypothesis from traditional thinking on the relationship between image and visual perception to be crunched by Friedman.