Friday, March 28, 2014

SIGNS 1


Signs and architecture have a close relationship. Once semiology drove the theoretical ponderings on things architectural, but this strategy is now out of fashion. The idea that architecture is a language and could conform with matters concerning language has moved on to other interests and analogies. Architecture is always trying to find parallels with other concepts so that theories can be expanded into its field.

Still, buildings get cluttered with signs that display messages highlighting an issue either with the building design itself, e.g. USE OTHER ENTRY, or some management aspect of its use, e.g. DO NOT TOUCH. There are many examples of signs in buildings. The cry of the architect is frequently: "Why didn't they ask before putting these signs up?" Signs are an important part of the whole and need careful consideration.

Sometimes signs have unusual interpretations because of their context; sometimes they are humourous because of their message or translation. Here are a few examples of the latter:


 DO NOT FEED PIGEON
Penang


 Don't Touch Every Thing  Thank
Penang


WARNING
BEWARE OF RABBIT HOLES
STAY OFF THE GRASS
Port Macquarie, NSW, Australia


There was one set of memorable instructions that once came with a gas mantle replacement package:
HANG LOOSELY LIGHT




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