Regarding the dismal fate of urban utopies, one recent case in point: Sou Fujimoto’s House NA as a privatized, fetishized version of Constant Nieuwenhuys’s New Babylon, a utopian skeletal megastructure that would be constantly freely transformable by its residents.
Fujimoto’s version successfully recycles the seductive imagery and retains the vaguely utopian aura while dispensing with the problematic details of free access and participation.
This serves well to illustrate the frustrating problem with revolutionary architecture, imagery, and art in general: it is deceptive and easily hijacked.
I can easily identify with the byzantine and islamic iconoclasts and their fear of representation. The images have a bad habit of taking on a life of their own.