Sophian Plaza, continued.
From Kansas City Star dated October 9, 1945: widow of Harry Sophian, "Mrs. Jane F. Sophian fell from a window in her apartment on the eighth floor of the Sophian Plaza, 4618 Warwick Boulevard," resulting in her death at the age of 57. Per his death certificate on file with the State of Missouri, Harry Sophian - of Russian descent - died on September 21, 1945 from chronic nephritis (kidney disease). Eighteen days later, his widow fell out of an eighth floor window. If I were to be faithful, I would return for another sketch - a true analytique; like I owed it to her. To them.
Sometimes architecture is functional, facility, shelter, dwelling. A cave is a dwelling, but with one exception - when a cave is a tomb, caves are not Architecture. Caves don't rise above themselves, nor transcend into being other-than a cave. Cold, dark, sometimes dry. Sometimes architecture is ornamented with symbols so that it can tell a story, and have meaning. Meaning is relative, but taps a part of collective and social memory that gives us a "sense of place." I don't think it's always tangible, or that it fits into a diagram, but we feel it when it happens. Whether we've stood in this exact place before or not, a sense of place is defined by the feeling of recognition and understanding for the visitor. A sense of place connects us to memory, ancient or otherwise.
Modern architecture is not without it's examples of a sense of place. Often though - we must be instructed to feel it, or that the sense of place must be diagrammed for us. Fallingwater (FLW) has a sense of place, one that originates by being in the woods, near a stream - it's that sort of sense, of place. Even the Seagrams Building (MvdR) in Manhattan has a sense of place, by being a high-rise it is part of the city and feels of-the-city, but by being also a plaza and it reminds us to exhale from the compression of the city into an open space.
One of the world's great urban public spaces and monuments to memory is Piazza Navona, Rome. Shaped like an elongated oval-track, the piazza was developed by 15th century buildings constructed around the perimeter of the ruins of a 1st century ancient Roman stadium. The ruins gave way to bustling city market space and eventually, fountains, obelisk, and scuplture formalized this "left-over" into a beautiful relief from the tight streets and buildings of Rome.