As an avid reader of your journal, I really enjoyed Jim Gall’s letter on tedium (Architecture Australia January/February 2010, vol 99 no 1). Letter writing is an art form. It drove me to find the back issue he was referring to, which, in my jumbled universe and bearing in mind my irrational sense of order, is quite a job. It would be nice, I suppose, to have the perfect shelf with the perfect purist, white order of clear minimalist space. But anyway, Jim, keep at it. Read Tom Wolfe and E. W. Johnson’s anthology The New Journalism (1973). It’s not about architecture per se but it could be.
And, yes, it worries me how some architects use timber as if it is wallpaper. Timber is sort of green bling to some in the sustainability game. And on the outside of a building too! Don’t they teach “materials” anymore? When I studied architecture in the 1960s, we had a whole bloomin’ year on it, but then old-school journeyman draftsmen do not know too much about detail. The text we had for our materials class was Building Materials by Cecil Handisyde (1950), an olden days tome if ever there was one.
As to the letter regarding the name change of the RAIA to AIA, it ought to be thought of in terms of how rapidly the country is heading towards a republic – another “R” word. But it must be difficult for those loyal to the Crown. By the way, to take that argument to a higher level, the Australian constitution makes no distinction between trade and professions. It just states the right to free trade as being the ultimate freedom. And that document is signed off by Mum.
The legalist class in Australia makes a living out of these bun fights and when push comes to shove on a building site, the largest specification in the world that reads like the Magna Carta is just not going to get the job done. Good old simple common sense and reason must prevail. Dare I say it, a balanced decision.
ART & ARCHITECTURE
Thank you for the article on the exhibition Portraits + Architecture in Architecture Australia (January/February 2010, vol 99 no 1).
I would like to kindly point out that the author, Annabelle Pegrum, has taken a quote from my podcast out of context in the article and I can’t help but feel I was misrepresented.
I refer to the line, “In his podcast Will Fung describes architecture at CO-AP as a ‘balancing thing’ of art, science and humanities, but their installation of dozens of standard white plastic bins tied together to sculpture space does little to articulate this approach.”
What I said in the podcast was a reference to architecture in general as a profession. The question by Christopher Chapman I was answering was, “What inspired you to work as an architect?” I was not referring to the architecture at CO-AP or the (architectural) approach at CO-AP, as was written.
I understand that works of architecture, art and design are open to subjective scrutiny and I welcome the critique; however, I wanted to point out the factual error.
In the Tasmanian section of Radar Headlines (AA January/February 2010, vol 99 no 1), we incorrectly suggested that the Sullivans Cove Waterfront Authority is directly responsible for the redevelopment of Hobart’s Parliament Square.
The Sullivans Cove Waterfront Authority is the planning authority that will need to assess the proposed redevelopment. Citta Property Group is the developer and the design architects are Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp (FJMT).