The concept of transparency is critical – not only to understanding early and mid-20th century modernism – but also to engaging current architectural concerns with mediation, density, surface, light, movement, and information. The purpose of the seminar is to examine the concept of transparency and the discourses regarding the shaping and experience of abstract space that informed it.These discourses include early 20th century theories of \”space creation\” (from Hildebrandt, Schmarzow and Sitte, to van Doesburg, Moholy-Nagy, Mies, Giedion and others); theories of \”image formation\” (Richter, Kepes, Gestalt psychology, etc.); discourses regarding \”relational space\” or \”space-time\”, and the expansion of vision through new technologies of transportation, optics, pattern recognition, and camouflage; the representational discourses of graphic design, photography, and film before and after World War II. We will also examine the translation of phenomenal transparency into an operative concept in the 1960s and 1970s in the work of the New York Five and others; finally we will investigate the instrumental tansparency/translucency/obscurity of \”light construction\” in the 1990s and the significance of the concept of transparency today. Requirements/assignments: Course requirements include weekly readings and informed participation in class discussions. A careful preparation of the assigned reading for each week is expected of everyone. Throughout the semester one or two students will be responsible for initiating discussion of selected weekly readings or short presentation of assigned topics relating to the readings. The principal assignment is a 10 page paper on a topic chosen by you in consultation with me. Prerequisites: GSD 4201-4206 or equivalent or post-professional-degree status (MArch 2, MDesS, etc)