Forbidden Tales
Dr. Livio Dimitriu is a Professor of Architecture/Theory/History at the Pratt Institute, New York, USA as well as being Honorary Advising Professor of Architecture at Inje University in South Korea.
Dr. Livio is visiting IUA and will give a lecture at the design- and architecture department, Friday the 7th of February at 15:00 in Lecture hall A, Þverholt 11.
Dr. Livio Dimitriu will be reading and discussing excerpts from his recent inter-disciplinary and inter-cultural volume Forbidden Tales subtitled “fictional truths”. The short stories address a very broad range of subjects in architecture and the arts drawn from direct experiences in the USA, Europe, and Asia.
This most unorthodox volume of fiction is a rare occurrence when an architect, and above all a teacher in the Asian meaning of the word, chooses to share with others his totally sincere and most intimate thoughts and insights. The reasons might be complex. Any writing, like any act of design, is an absolute confession that involves by definition an uncomfortable exhibitionistic and voyeuristic component.
History is actually “histories,” in the significant plural established by Herodotus millennia ago. Truth is a matter of perception of that which one assumes to be a fact. Truth is Proustian and Procrustian at best. It is all a matter of the particular point of view taken. The volume Forbidden Tales is simultaneously both truth and fiction, in the spirit of Michael Riffaterre’s  “Fictional Truth.”
Architectural theory, history, design, similarly to any other human endeavor, is above all a matter of belief and faith. Without such a vision involving the “ecology of the soul” meaning is all but lost.
The purpose of the volume is to reveal to others that which they already know but fail to see because of the indoctrination imposed by the academia and the society at large.
The prose of the over two hundred mostly short stories included in this volume offers an eerie feeling that the author is actually sketching and outlining cinematic scenarios. Each and every one of the free-standing texts is a miniature movie script. The worlds that are described unbiasedly and lovingly cross with ease the cultural, racial, and religious boundaries among many peoples on four continents. Dimitriu’s atrocious eye tells the truth as one sees it and not as one might wish it to be.
Ultimately, the writing of this volume is guided by a fearless and unapologetic search for freedom of thought. The obsession with truth that always resides inside reality is an act of liberation from preconceptions.
Camus dixit: “Freedom is a full-time job.”