Bunker Archeology  

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"In 1958, Virilio conducted a phenomenological enquiry into military space and the organization of territory, particularly concerning the Atlantic Wall—the 15,000 Nazi bunkers built during World War II along the coastline of France and designed to repel any Allied assault. In 1975 he co-organised the Bunker Archeology exhibition at the Decorative Arts Museum in Paris, a collection of texts and images relating to the Atlantic Wall. " --Sholem Stein


"One of the essential characteristics of the bunker is that it is one of the rare modern monolithic architectures." --incipit

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Bunker Archeology: Texts and Photos (1975, French: Bunker Archéologie : étude sur l'espace militaire européen de la Seconde Guerre mondiale) is a book by Paul Virilio. In 1958, Virilio started a phenomenological enquiry into military space and the organization of territory, particularly concerning the Atlantic Wall.

A short text was published by Virilio in 1966 in Architecture principe, 7.

The result of this study was showcased in from December 10 1975 to the end of February 1976 at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris and published in French in 1975 by the Pompidou foundation as Bunker Archéologie.

Contents

From the American publisher

The Atlantic Wall has never been as famous as the Maginot or Siegfried line. Built in less than 4 years on the entire French coastline to forestall an Allied landing, this system of fortification designed by General Todt is composed of almost 15,000 separate constructions including 4,000 major structures and 9,000 artillery batteries which linked the fortified ports. On 6th June 1944, the Allied landings put it out of commission once and for all.

In the aftermath of the War, the author started the research of this defence system from a new standpoint, beginning this study which combines the objectivity of the historian, the awe with which the structures inspired in him as a boy, and the aesthetics and philosophy of the modern mind.

This is a photographic and historic study of one of the great lines of fortification of World War II, including a strategic and design analysis of each type of structure - bunkers, observation posts, etc. --from the publisher

From the German publisher

1992: Bunkerarchäologie. München, Hanser

English translation

Princeton Architectural Press; 1 edition (December 1, 1997)

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