A particularly exhilarating use of Pruitt-Igoe for the trailer of Grand Theft Auto IV. For those who don’t know, this piece of music was originally written for the first part of the Qatsi Trilogy, Godfrey Reggio’s incredible film Koyaanisiqatsi. This was a series of films about modern life: Life out of Balance (Koyaanis), Life in Transformation (Powaq), and Life as War (Naqoy).
Of further interest, just about this time 35 years ago the Pruitt-Igoe Housing Project in St. Louis was being demolished after a life of not even 20 years which became the poster child for the "Death of Modernism". The history of the project itself seems indelibly tied to so much of the ambition and failures of 20th century modernism. The architect of the project was American modernist Minoru Yamasaki. (most famous for designing the World Trade Center)
Strangely enough we now live in a time where the failures of modern life and art are now being romanticized. The blatant disregard the modernists and modern society demonstrated which so severely transformed the world, so ingeniously exposed in the Qatsi Trilogy, has now been forgotten. While Koyaanisqatsi and Naqoyqatsi certainly offer a certain removed pejorative commentary on our world, Powaqqatsi seems to indicate that there is still time to create a better way of life. So the question becomes not "where did we go wrong?", but rather "where do we go from here knowing what we know?"