The Exceptional Reichstag.
On the Relationships between Late Capital, its Imaginary and Architecture
In this paper, an attempt is made to discuss the topic of the exception as a conceptual category in relation to contemporary society and its economiccultural paradigm: late capitalism. It is first studied the relationship between architecture, power and economy in order to find what can be considered as exceptional today. Consequently, it is noted that the exception is today one of the key elements for the contemporary "episteme" so much so to become a new normal. Given this assumption, it is noticed that every architectural expression –such as Charles Jencks’ definition of the “icon building”– that has tried to define the idea of an exception has ultimately failed, becoming a norm. Therefore, by studying the case of the Berlin’s Reichstag, it is unveiled an aesthetic property that could be considered as an exceptional exception even today. Indeed, even though its complex and troubled history, in this building’s historical features can be found a kind of aesthetic exception (the aesthetic of difference) that embodies multiplicity and, rather than express absolute values, uses the tension between values in order to produce something different even today.