A commission for Very Vari Veri Harvard Journal
Ornament is not a language. Do you carefully explain the precise mechanics of your movements, their intent, their biological imperatives, their cultural origins, and the anthropological explanation for the way you bite the lip of your lover in bed? No, you consume them with your eyes, your hands and your nose. Ornament is of the flesh. It is the architecture of desire. It is the communion of space with identity, with animus, it is the copulation of form and instinct, it is the pure ecstasy of intuition. It is not words, it is colours. It isn't ideas, it's the salty sweat of an era's euphoria. Ornament is theory’s lover, it stops it getting dry, it keeps it warm, and wet.