5.30.2007

"if you build it, they will shun"

This Saturday, June 2, the Royal Ontario Museum will officially open its new addition, the "crystal" designed by Daniel Libeskind.

The building is almost universally loathed in the Toronto area. I can only imagine what Canadians elsewhere, who already roll their eyes at Canada's largest city, think of it. Torontonians can't sneer loudly enough. They don't simply dislike it. They hate it. They're outraged.

There's little doubt that the new ROM addition is a fabulous building. It may end up being a Great Building.

But it's different, and most people don't like different. Bring us the same old thing, please. Bring us the comfortable. Don't move our minds in new directions. Don't expand our horizons.

Christopher Hume, urban issues columnist for the Toronto Star, wrote an excellent piece about this reaction, placing it in context of critiques of new buildings everywhere, always: "Build It, And They Will Shun".
Next Saturday, when Daniel Libeskind's addition to the Royal Ontario Museum, the Michael Lee-Chin Crystal, finally opens, a wave of anger and contempt will wash over Toronto. It has already started.

Shock and outrage will spew from the pages of newspapers, radio talkshows and blogs.

Never will people have beheld a building so ugly, architecture so appalling, design so bad – or such cheap-looking aluminium cladding this side of a post-war Scarborough semi.

You can see it now, the shaking of heads, rolling of eyeballs, wringing of hands, the frothing, spluttering and snorting.

It won't be pretty.

But if they know as much about history as they should, Libeskind and his clients at the ROM will be thrilled. This has been the reaction to new architecture since time immemorial.

The ROM is in good company. The list of buildings that were hated when they were first built includes the Eiffel Tower, Rockefeller Center and the Parthenon. The Parthenon, for godssake! Considered by many to be the perfect classical building. Toronto buildings that were once hated include BCE Place and the Sharp Centre at the Ontario College of Art, two of Toronto's great spaces.

I've been reading letters to the Star about the Crystal, decrying the heap of junk, the pile of garbage, the eyesore, the horror, oh the humanity. Soon after moving here, I took a little walking tour of downtown Toronto with someone I met through this blog. As we passed the ROM, I mentioned it was exciting that Toronto had several new good buildings going up, including the new museum additions by Frank Gehry and Libeskind. She wrinkled her nose: "No one here likes that thing." I know I'll sound like a New York snob, but I thought to myself, Hayseed.

Art is more than "I like that" and "I don't like that". A list of great books is not the same as a list of your favourite books. All the music you like isn't great, and all great music isn't to your taste. This is true for all of us, and for all art forms, including architecture.

Torontonians: aim higher. You complain that Toronto is not considered a world-class city; you wonder if it will ever stand beside New York, London, Paris and the other great cities of the world. Then a top architect builds you a great building and you are too philistine to appreciate it.

31 comments:

loneprimate said...

Oh, yeah, and Voice of Fire is "great" art because it has a "great" name attached to it. An appeal to authority is rarely a sign of a strong case.

I’m speaking subjectively, of course, but sincerely. This new section is awful. It looks like it's falling down; the nearer completion it gets, the more it gives the impression it is, in fact, actually in the process of being removed to make way for something elegant and stirring... like, say, the original building whose beauty it now blights like a tumor. The CN Tower, City Hall, Roy Thomson Hall... we have our share of unconventional buildings that people take to. Something about them works, and we're ready to embrace them to the point of making them iconic, so please don't tar us as "philistines” simply because we exercise discernment; because we have minds and judgment. Some buildings simply don’t work in the general public eye. Dear as Mississauga is to me, its city hall is a wincing eyesore without even the grace of the barn and grain silo it aspires to evoke. The same is true of the ROM addition. It’s an intrusion into a public space and an unintentional but palpable insult to the building it defaces like a car part impaling flesh after some horrible accident. It matters not a whit who designed it; I don’t care if God designed it. God also designed the appendix. Great names do not necessarily equate to great works. And this ain’t. It’s a big glass cardboard box some kid hasn’t finished stomping flat yet.

I’m heading into middle age here; I hope to be around for a while yet… I’m willing to bet that we’ll live to see the day the city takes that thing down, and when it does, the original ROM building will still be standing, and will still make people feel quietly proud when they see it.

Penn Station, anyone?

CaliGirl said...

I will be visiting Toronto the beginning of july and the ROM is one of main stops while in town. Im anxious to see what all the fuss is about. im sure i will take lots of pictures on our trip and that will be one of them.

can you suggest a good (but reasonably priced) mexican restraunt down town?

L-girl said...

Oh, yeah, and Voice of Fire is "great" art because it has a "great" name attached to it. An appeal to authority is rarely a sign of a strong case.

I didn't make an appeal to authority, nor do I need one. I believe the ROM crystal is a truly great building.

The CN Tower, City Hall, Roy Thomson Hall... we have our share of unconventional buildings that people take to.

The CN Tower is not a great building, by any standard. Neither is Roy Thomson Hall.

Something about them works

The CN Tower works at night, lit up, when you can't see it. It's a poured concrete vertical slab. Iconic, yes, because it's become a symbol of the city. Great building? No.

please don't tar us as "philistines" simply because we exercise discernment; because we have minds and judgment.

Most people turning up their noses at the ROM crystal aren't using minds and judgment. They're shutting down both. You may be an exception, I don't know.

Great names do not necessarily equate to great works.

Absolutely true. That's why I never said or implied that the building is great because of who designed it.

I'm quite sure that once people live with the building for a few years, they'll start to like it, then love it.

What's your analogy to Penn Station? I don't get it.

New York's Penn Station was one of the great buildings of its time, thoughtlessly torn down over enormous community protest, which eventually led to Landmarks Preservation laws in NYC. It's known as "the building that died so others could live". What is the connection here?

Anyway, if I respond to every angry comment about this post, I'll be here all day, and I have work to do, so ta-ta.

loneprimate said...

can you suggest a good (but reasonably priced) mexican restraunt down town?

I guess it depends on what you’re looking for. If you mean real, honest to God Mexican, I’ve been to the Jalapeno Restaurant at 725 King St W and can vouch for it. If you mean something more like Tex-Mex, the best such restaurant I’ve ever been to is Hernando’s Hideaway at 545 Yonge Street, just a bit south of Wellesley on the east side. Fantastic fare, and ironically enough, the place got its start in Ottawa, so I understand.

L-girl said...

CaliGirl, you asked for an invite to wmtc2. If you don't email me, I can't send it! If you're still interested, please get in touch.

loneprimate said...

The CN Tower is not a great building, by any standard. Neither is Roy Thomson Hall.

Ahhh, philistine. I read this and I think hayseed. ;)

That's why I never said or implied that the building is great because of who designed it.

Well, I'm sorry, but you did. You evoke the name of Daniel Libeskind and suggest if we knew more “history”, we’d be grateful. That’s a stampede-the-herd argument, and such matters shouldn’t bear at all on a person’s estimation of the building as art. If I find a mess on my carpet, and I’m disgusted by it, that’s the visceral reaction, and it’s pure. Am I supposed to be swayed from my impression by the revelation that it wasn’t deposited by Joe Blow from up the street, but by, say, Abe Lincoln? No, it’s still just a mess on my carpet. It doesn’t matter who designed it, or even to what end. As a piece of visual art, it has to live and die entirely by its own merit. And I don’t think it lives. No doubt the day will come when it won’t shock me anymore, but I doubt the day will come when I’ll consider it beautiful or even integral to the ROM.

As for Daniel Libeskind, a great designer he may be; surely his reputation is founded on something people appreciated. That said, even the Bambino struck out once in a while, and not every hit was a homer.

Most people turning up their noses at the ROM crystal aren't using minds and judgment. They're shutting down both. You may be an exception, I don't know.

No, not in the least. Not in the slightest. People are being honest. They see it, and it doesn’t work for them. A lot of it has to do with context. Elsewhere, or on its own, or serving some other purpose, this design might in fact be truly evocative. But imposed on the ROM like it is, it’s doesn’t work. It does not complement it, it doesn’t even authentically counterpoint it. There’s no connection; its presence seems, and is, in fact, entirely forced. There’s a house down on Eastern Avenue at the edge of the Don Valley Parkway that’s essentially made of a couple of cubes standing on their points. They’re immediately eye-catching and I’ll go out of my way to drive past them. In their way, they’re not dissimilar to the Crystal in conception. But they work because of the context. If they were jutting out of Buckingham Palace, it would be another matter.

What's your analogy to Penn Station? I don't get it… New York's Penn Station was one of the great buildings of its time, thoughtlessly torn down over enormous community protest…

Imagine now that instead of being torn down, the new station had been superimposed upon it, covering it up. Well, that’s how I, and lots of other people, it seems, feel about the ROM. Addition can be diminishment. To that end, why is community protest sage when it occurs in New York, but the sign of yokels if it happens here?

James said...

I've lost track of time -- I didn't realize it was opening tomorrow! I'll have to go back and take some more panoramic photos.

I haven't been up there recently, but I was liking it as it was going in.

The Daily Dose of Imagery guy has taken a couple of really good photos of the Crystal (one, two).

Though I have to say, I don't like the Sharp Centre, mainly because I wish they'd put something more interesting than a big rectangular black-and-white box on top of those stilts.

I'm also a little disappointed that the rear part of the Gehry addition is so rectangular as well. I was expecting something a little more swoopy.

And Voice of Fire is great art because of the impact it has when you see it in person -- which absolutely cannot be replicated in a photograph. I saw it at the National Gallery, and it was very impressive. Sure, it's just blue and red stripes -- but the choice of the shades of blue and red, and the relative width of the stripes, do interesting things to the human visual system, making the stripes seem to hover out above the canvas. Throw in the sheer size of the thing, and you get a very memorable experience (and learn something about how your eyes can be fooled).

I saw it while I was at the Gallery for an exhibit of Anish Kapoor sculptures, which also do amazing things to not only your visual sense, but also hearing and spacial perception.

L-girl said...

If I seemed to be evoking the name Libeskind as something other than a simple fact, I wrote imprecisely or am being misinterpreted. A building is not great because of who designs it.

But neither is a work of art bad because people do not like it. Popularity is not a criteria by which to judge art of any genre. That's a herd mentality.

I may not care for any particular work of art, but that's not what's most important.

People love to sneer at experts and critics, but I know there are many people who know more about certain subjects than I do. If an overwhelming consensus of experts in a particular field agree that a work is important, I will take the time to try to find out why. I will go beyond my subjective reaction and try to discover the objective criteria that makes so many knowledgeable people say it's important. I may not end up liking it, but I will try to appreciate it on its own terms.

Snap judgments of "I don't like this" is what makes a reaction philistine. There is more to art than first impressions, and more than "I like this".

Your mention of context is very valid. That's a real critique. "It looks like a crumpled up mess" or some similar quip is just a quip.

Now I really, really gotta go.

L-girl said...

Though I have to say, I don't like the Sharp Centre, mainly because I wish they'd put something more interesting than a big rectangular black-and-white box on top of those stilts.

I'm not in love with the Sharp Centre. But it's a very interesting building. It's fun and inventive and evocative. It aims high and does a lot of things well.

L-girl said...

To that end, why is community protest sage when it occurs in New York, but the sign of yokels if it happens here?

I've seen no community protest about the ROM. If there has been any, please correct me.

I've only heard and read "this is an ugly building, I don't like this".

That's not protest.

If Penn Station had been added on to, but preserved (and had I been old enough at the time), I hope I would have assessed the new addition objectively and not just rejected it because it was new and different. That's what I think most people are doing about the crystal.

loneprimate said...

I hope I would have assessed the new addition objectively and not just rejected it because it was new and different. That's what I think most people are doing about the crystal.

I think you're doing an injustice to the people of the city. It's hardly parochial. It's a city that has gone from being "the Belfast of America" in 1950 to one that, within two generations, transformed naturally and nicely into one that has embraced myriad cultures, languages, customs and visible differences; hardly a place demonstrably afraid of change! So it seems unfair to suddenly suppose the place is backward because its sensibilities haven't embraced something. I think it's simply that the building looks ugly to a great many of us, slopped onto the side of a classically beautiful building, and would look ugly in New York, London, Paris, or Timbuktu. Would anyone jump up and applaud if this thing were dumped onto the Louvre?

In all honesty, the first time I encountered it, I thought it was some sort of elaborate scaffolding for a restorative process. But when I realize they were cladding it, my reaction was, good God, it's meant to be permanent? But can't they see it looks nothing like the ROM? And I think that's probably not an uncommon reaction. Let's face it; the thing is, essentially, a box. It's meant to hold things, store things, display things, and as such, its outer form is not really dictated by its function. It could look like anything. I don't think this look is appropriate. And people who feel as I do are well within their rights to say so.

Popularity is not a criteria by which to judge art of any genre. That's a herd mentality.

Nobody told me what to think of it; I looked at it. I brought my own values and life experience and aesthetic sensibilities to it, considered its context, and knowing nothing of its background, I judged it and found it wanting. I think that's how art has be judged; it's a personal and subjective matter, but for what it's worth, it seems to be the consensus. So we'll live with it, but I doubt the city will embrace it, except in the manner of Jimmy Durante's schnoz.

Popularity is not a criteria by which to judge art of any genre...

...If an overwhelming consensus of experts in a particular field agree that a work is important, I will take the time to try to find out why.


These positions, if you look at them side by side, contradict one another. Again, the only difference here is the appeal to authority. You can't judge art that way. It really doesn't matter what the experts say, or even the author. The work has to stand on its own merit, and it has to be judged by individuals. The author, after all, may be dead or unknown; he or she is not resident in the work and cannot speak for it or even tell you what you must "get" out of it. Otherwise, it would make sense to hire someone to stand outside the ROM 24/7 and tell people why they ought to appreciate what is, for all intents and purpose, an ugly building to a great many people... but it seems to me that if it were a building people found aesthetically pleasing in the first place, none of that would even come into play. I mean, no one has to tell them the old ROM building is beautiful, or that they should chase down the facts behind its construction in the hopes of allaying their nagging sense that they don't "get" it. They like it, they know they like it, and the rest is immaterial to that, as it should be.

I don’t dispute that some people will indeed see something they like in this building. I can’t tell you you don’t see what you see. If you like it, you like it. But if you don’t, you don’t. Those of us who do not no more deserve to be ridiculed than does someone who doesn’t like bananas, or finds the comedy of Seinfeld unappealing.

L-girl said...

Would anyone jump up and applaud if this thing were dumped onto the Louvre?

The Louvre was the first museum to embrace just such an addition, the IM Pei-desgined Pyramid in its courtyard.

Let's face it; the thing is, essentially, a box.

It's the exact opposite of a box. Most of the downtown office towers are boxes.

These positions, if you look at them side by side, contradict one another.

If they appear to, I am not expressing myself well.

One is about mass popularity.

The other acknowledges such a thing as expertise.

Again, the only difference here is the appeal to authority. You can't judge art that way.

But you can become more open to different art - more appreciating of different, perhaps unusual, art forms - by learning more about the genre.

Learning, be it through a classroom or a newspaper, means acknowledging that some people have studied a particular field and know more about it than you do.

Ignorant viewers of art believe that there is no such thing as an expert. They believe critics are people exactly like them, who just happen to have a venue through which to spout their opinion.

I don't doubt that those pseudo-critics exist. But someone who has spent a lifetime studying (for example) 19th Century British literature could tell me why Charles Dickens is important, whether or not I care for Mr Dickens' work. The popularity of Dickens' work among modern day readers does not determine Dickens' worth as a writer, for a variety of reasons, mostly having to do with the readers, not the writer.

I believe there is objective criteria by which art can be judged, and mass popularity is not one of them.

It really doesn't matter what the experts say, or even the author. The work has to stand on its own merit, and it has to be judged by individuals.

To be fully appreciated, art must be viewed in context. To get context, one must be willing to learn. To learn, one must be willing to acknowledge that there are experts, and that they might have something to teach.

I might end up disliking the work of art anyway. But I will at least have attempted to understand it, and I might acknowledge its objective worth despite my own dislike of it.

Those of us who do not no more deserve to be ridiculed than does someone who doesn’t like bananas, or finds the comedy of Seinfeld unappealing.

Well, I'm hearing Torontonians by the score ridicule the building. I find them at least as ridiculous. Not because they don't care for the building - but because they don't care for it because it's "weird looking", i.e., different.

You may not fall under that category. From what I gather, most people do.

James said...

The Louvre was the first museum to embrace just such an addition, the IM Pei-desgined Pyramid in its courtyard.

Which was greeted with much derision and hand-wringing when it was announced.

One thing about the Crystal -- at least it's a lot more interesting to look at than the old addition it's replacing, which also didn't match the original structure, but was so bland that no-one complained.

L-girl said...

Which was greeted with much derision and hand-wringing when it was announced.

Oh god yes, the world was coming to an end. I'm not a Pei fan by any means, but I came to like that one. It works much better in person than it does in photos, IMO.

One thing about the Crystal -- at least it's a lot more interesting to look at than the old addition it's replacing, which also didn't match the original structure, but was so bland that no-one complained.

To me, blandness is the worst of all possible artistic sins.

impudent strumpet said...

If it were it's own building I'd think it's the coolest thing ever and a brilliant idea for a museum. The problem is that it's an extension of the current ROM building, but it doesn't seem to be acknowledging that in any way. It's like it's just stuck on there without thought, going "Oh, the old building is so old it doesn't matter any more! I'm the way of the future! I am going to devour this building like a tumour!"

The older architecture of the existing museum does contribute to the ambiance of the museum and of the neighbourhood as a whole. I have no problem with the extension being cutting-edge, but it needs to acknowledge this fact. Failing to acknowledge the value of history looks especially bad on a museum.

L-girl said...

The problem is that it's an extension of the current ROM building, but it doesn't seem to be acknowledging that in any way.

In my opinion, this is a valid criticism. Lone Primate's point about the surrounding context is also (again, in my opinion).

What bothers me - what I deride - is a knee-jerk "ewww, this is weird, this is different".

It will be interesting to see if either of these concerns improve with time, after the building settles in to the neighbourhood and the original structure. Sometimes time can really alter our perceptions of buildings.

M@ said...

I think this is the most important point in the whole argument:

Torontonians: aim higher.

I can't say I'm a fan of the crystal, but I am a fan of the bold, the dramatic, and the symbolic "up yers!" (hence ten years in a punk band). And, Secret Superman's Fortress though this might be, it's passed the WTF test and at least become something interesting.

If you want something to be outraged about, Torontonians, take a look at the condos blighting your lakefront. This is much, much better. And that's said as someone who doesn't particularly like it.

(Or Dickens. I built my grad career on hating Dickens for no particular reason... Well, I have my reasons, but they're weak. But it's fun, eh?)

L-girl said...

M@, well said! I agree.

And at last we've found a point of disagreement beyond Margaret Atwood. I'm a huge Dickens-head. My senior thesis was on Bleak House. Hopefully we can still be friends.

M@ said...

Unfortunately I've gotten over my Dickens thing; I was really only dissing him because a bunch of other grad students at the time were studying him. Ever the contrarian.

It is refreshing, though, to find a point of contention between us. I'll be sure to make sneering comments of some kind next time I see you, shall I? :)

James said...

But can't they see it looks nothing like the ROM?

Well, yes. That's part of the point.

redsock said...

I'll echo was Laura said. LP offers a lengthy, thoughtful assessment of the building and finds he doesn't like it. That is fine.

But the average citizen isn't doing that. They are looking up saying "yuck". That's where the hick mentality lies.

dean said...

The twin towers were hated when they went up, too. And you know what? The hatred was well deserved. They look great from the vantage point of toursists looking at Manhattan from across a river, but the WTC complex itself was awful if you had to go there.

The ROM extension is just a huge thing that screams "OOoo... Look at me! I was designed by an ARCHITECT! I might not be useful, but I'm NEW!" The reason these buildings go up, and particularly end up at universities and museums is because rich people with no taste end up trying to ingratiate themselves with famous architects because they think it will be a sign of sophistication. So when they put up the money for these public buildings, they insist that one of these ego-driven starchiects build it.

If you want to make an artistic statement about humanity, paint a picture, write a book, or compose a song. Don't invade my living space.

I think I have an idea where the ROM extension will soon be featured.

I'm a bit biased, having spent many years in Cambridge, which spent a lot of time hiring architects with great fame/academic credentials to put up really ugly, unliveable/unworkable buildings. Plus, I went to a high school designed by a "star architect" who just created something that ended up looking like a prison. All these designs were "award winning."

dean said...

But the average citizen isn't doing that. They are looking up saying "yuck". That's where the hick mentality lies.

I totally disagree. Good architecture "just works," it shouldn't be something you "learn to get used to." Buying/investing in art shouldn't be done because you heard it was good or you think it is important. You should start by buying the art that you like and work from there.

I guess I've learned to loathe a bunch of "innovative" architectural projects because not only do I dislike many new buildings that have been built in the places I've lived, but I have worked in places that, when they were built, were supposed to be "the wave of the future," but turned out, 40 years later, to be terrible.

There are plenty of buildings that were loathed in their day, and are still regarded as just as ugly now as they were decades ago. The only good compliments they get being from people who say things like, "well, better this attempt at doing something new rather than something which would have fit into the area, because that would have shown that we can't be original, anymore."

redsock said...

The twin towers were hated when they went up, too. And you know what? The hatred was well deserved. They look great from the vantage point of toursists looking at Manhattan from across a river, but the WTC complex itself was awful if you had to go there.

I don't think anyone in New York liked them from the day they went up to the day they came down.

Stunning from 20 miles away driving somewhere in Jersey, but that's about it. ... But in context of where they were, they were horribly out of place and proportion. And were boring boxes. They were just tall.

I worked in the North Tower for 3 years -- just another office buiding to me.

L-girl said...

I was about to comment about the WTC when I saw Redsock did it for me. I also worked there, off and on (temping) for several years. It was just another ugly, oversized office building. As has often been said, the only thing interesting about them was that there were two.

There's no connection, to my mind, between the WTC and the new ROM.

Good architecture "just works," it shouldn't be something you "learn to get used to."

Liking something more over time is not the same as learning to get used to it.

Must one always go with first impressions? Is art never an acquired taste? Opera, Shakespeare, Dickens, Steinbeck, Stravinsky - you either like them on first discovery, or walk away? Is there never room for learning and building an appreciation?

If we are judge art solely by first impressions, we're doomed to the ordinary and the comfortable. Most people shy away from what's different, at first. It doesn't mean they'll never cultivate a taste for it.

I also reject your assumption of "ego-driven architect". That strikes me as either jealousy or anti-intellectualism. One makes his work ego-driven and another person's altruistic, other than your assumptions?

L-girl said...

I'm a bit biased, having spent many years in Cambridge, which spent a lot of time hiring architects with great fame/academic credentials to put up really ugly, unliveable/unworkable buildings. Plus, I went to a high school designed by a "star architect" who just created something that ended up looking like a prison. All these designs were "award winning."

That's interesting, but irrelevant. I'm not saying all buildings by famous architects are good. That would be absurd. Because you went to high school in a building that resembled a prison has no connection to the design of the ROM and why Torontonians do or do not like it.

L-girl said...

I'll be sure to make sneering comments of some kind next time I see you, shall I? :)

I believe it's required. :)

dean said...

Fair points all, l-girl, I just have a certain amount of skepticism about buildings that are highly regarded by "an overwhelming consensus of experts." On the latter point, architects win accolades by having designs of the sort that get featured in architecture magazines. People, however, like buildings that they actually want to work/live in and around. When the love-fest wears off among architects, they can go evaluate the next big thing. The residents of Toronto, however, are stuck with the ROM extension for the foreseeable future. We might like to think of architecture as pure art, but the truth is that it is deeply functional and something we invite in as guests into our personal space. Permanently. There's a difference between the eccentric but interesting guest we couldn't do without and the loud, obnoxious, unpleasant guest who can't shut up about how brilliant he is.

It's possible that the ROM extension is a good building and will prove itself so. I'm skeptical, and I'm perfectly willing to use my previous experience with award-winning architecture as a reason for my skepticism.

Also, when the WTC was designed, "big box in empty plaza" WAS considered interesting. I think that was the problem-- what's considered "interesting" on any given day does not necessarily translate to "good."

I grant you, I live in upper Washington, DC which seems to have taken blandness to to the next level. Not even "a bland attempt to have 'character.'" Just "bland." The tradeoff? I don't have to see this every day during my afternoon jog.

lso, I spoke too soon-- the ROM extension was named eyesore of the month in Dec. 06.

L-girl said...

I definitely don't think of architecture as pure art. That's one of the reasons I love it so much.

You seem to be saying that experts who like the new building are ego-driven, governed by fashion and fooled by the next big thing. But experts who disparage it on a website are people worth listening to. You haven't seen the building in person, but you're willing to promote a website that says its an eyesore.

loneprimate said...

But can't they see it looks nothing like the ROM?

Well, yes. That's part of the point.


Uhhh, that was kind of my point. Y'know, shaving cream on a hamburger kinda point?

L-girl said...

Meaning, it's not an accident that the two parts look nothing alike. It's intentional, and for some people, that works.