Re: Re: reorganisation and destruction of irish catholic churches
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. . . . is it impossible to retrieve the principles of classical architecture in contemporary circumstances and infuse them with creativity and invention? Or, are we posit that for some reason we are chained exclusively to modernism?
We’re back to ‘Tradition and Innovation’
I do understand where you’re coming from Praxiteles, the loss of ‘craft’ in modern architecture is almost as severe as the loss of craft in modern art, it’s right that we lament this and it’s appropriate that we strive to put it right.
I also agree that there is no fundamental difference between the past and the present and that we’ve become obsessed with the notion of ‘the contemporary’ as though it somehow didn’t instantly turn into more of ‘the past’, but one big difference with all this constant academic learning and professional training is that the acquisition of individual ‘knowledge’ has replaced the more collective notion of ‘tradition’.
I would bet that all the great works that we’ve admired in this thread were the product of collaborations between architects, sculptors, artists and legions of craftsmen, that was the real power of tradition.
More than a handy label to apply afterwards to a given historical phase, a tradition was a medium or a language in which ideas were communicated and through which advances were made, often incrementally. Within a tradition, everyone who understood the language understood how the ideas related to their craft and what was communicated appears to have been both instruction and licence.
We’ve abolished or abandoned the process of tradition and replaced it with a system of absolute knowledge which is communicated by an ever more minutely detailed set of instructions in the form of multiple drawings and specifications. In the process, we’ve replaced the craftsman with the technician . . . . . and then we wonder why our buildings are often uninspired.
I don’t think we’re ‘chained exclusively to modernism’. I think we can learn a lot from modernism. I think if we go back to the roots of modernism, we can see in the work of people like Mackintosh, some radical modernist notions in the freedom of expression, but combined with enormous attention to context and great respect for tradition, all expressed with of buckets of craft.
If we want to go backwards to get the inspiration for a fresh start, I’d go back that far maybe.
On Duncan Stroik
. . . . I shall ask him if he photocopies plans – as has been suggested.
Oh come on now Praxiteles, you don’t think he’s going to say: ‘Yeh, I photocopy plans’ 🙂