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|September 7th, 2008, 09:27 AM||#1|
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: George Town Tasmania Australia
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RECLAIMING NORMALCY: Architecture For An Antideluvian Age
I was not quite sure where to post this prose-poetic reflection after listening to this Dean of Architecture being interviewed on the radio.-Ron Price, Tasmania
The Dean of Architecture, Planning and Conservation at Columbia University, Bernard Tumey, was talking this morning about his identification with cities and apartment blocks. He has lived most of his life in Paris and New York and he identifies with these cities much more than the countries in which they exist. Listening to this radio interview made me think about the equivalent sources of my own identity. Apartment blocks have been and are now quite peripheral to my sense of identity and place. I have lived for perhaps two years of my 65 years of life in apartment blocks, bocks in three cities. The vast bulk of my life has been spent in houses and large complexes of buildings associated with my places of work.
As I scan my memory horizon and collect about myself the accoutrements of my sense of spacial identity: perhaps four dozen houses, some two dozen schools and other places of employment, an equal number of towns and cities, two countries and this planet earth occupy the solid ground of my spacial identity. The pilgrimage, the journey, that is my life dwells in this physical architecture, in these physical places. The religion I have espoused is, architecturally speaking, one that speaks much of origins and destinations but, more than these aspects of life and history, one that speaks of journeys, paths, roads, valleys, processes. At least that is how I have come to identify with the system of meaning at the centre of my life--my religion--with its way of constructing reality by means of words. -Ron Price with thanks to "Arts Today," ABC Radio National, 10:05-11:00 am, 3 January 2002; and John Gillis, A World of Their Own Making: A History of Myth and Ritual in Family Life, Oxford UP, NY, 1997, p.62.
There is something about the
entire universe that seems so
humanly significant. This is not
audacious; it's just some natural
falling into place, a natural part
of that Oneness which is at the
centre of my journey, the one
I travel in my head in what often
seems an ephemeral, fragmentary
existence with its convoys of people
with whom I have shared my life.
And yet, yet, this journey has brought
sacred and resplendent tokens which
have attracted me to some mysterious
place, some road of holiness, nearness
and beauty(1) which seems to have no
connection with all of the landmarks of
my life, in these towns, cities, houses
where I have lived my days, my hours
and millions of minutes gazing at the
surfaces of buildings with some blank
and empty visual field burning into my
optic nerve and that acqueous humour.
(1) Baha'u'llah, Seven Valleys, USA, 1952, p.3.
3 January 2002
|antideluvian, architecture, crisis, normalcy|