The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 13

CONCLUSIONS

There are no easy answers to the questions that are
raised when we discuss architecture and beauty. But
maybe the questions that have been raised will lead
to a clearer understanding of the issues involved. As
my fifth-year design professor repeatedly told us: a
problem clearly stated is half-solved.
1. How much should architects care about how their
buildings will be perceived by the general public?
Do we have an obligation of any kind professional, social or moral?
2. In the 21st century, is architecture (among other things) an art form? If so, it should
challenge its audience. What about the many millions who are unwilling participants
in this art lesson, and would prefer not to be challenged?
3. What became of firmness, commodity and delight? Do they still apply, and are they
listed in the right order?
4. Unavoidably, architects think about buildings in a different way than most people
do. This is a very good thing, because architects identify problems and explore
possibilities that escape other people. The question is: how can these concerns
be conveyed to the general public without sounding pompous and aloof?
5. Is it possible to devise a common vocabulary that would allow architects and the
public to elevate the discussion beyond the visual aspects of architecture, to the
emotional, intellectual, moral and spiritual dimensions, without offending or alienating each other?
6. Can we ever return to those days, at the end of the nineteenth century, when architecture was on everyone's mind and no one felt uncomfortable discussing it?

THE LOUVRE PYRAMID,
PARIS, I.M. PEI
CREDIT: ORIGINAL: USER:BENH
MODIFICATIONS: CORNISCHONG
AT LUXEMBOURGISH WIKIPEDIA,
CREATIVE COMMONS

Gordon S. Grice is Editor of The Right Angle Journal and a Director of the Built Environment Open Forum.

REFERENCES
1. OAA Perspectives, Fall, 2012.
2. A claim attributed to Frank Lloyd Wright
3. For example, in 2003, the Academy of Neuroscience for Architecture began exploring "neuro-architecture"
as a way to connect neuroscience and the study of behavioural responses to the built environment. (www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2016.00866/full)

ANSWERS TO QUIZ:

1. Too bad it won't fall down: The Washington Monument, Washington DC,
1885, by Robert Mills and Thomas Lincoln Casey. The quotation is from the
American Architect and Building News. -Page 8
2. An inverted potty: Guggenheim Museum, New York, 1959,
by Frank Lloyd Wright. Quotations are from
http://listverse.com/2010/10/21/10-notable-buildings-people-hated/ -Page 12
3. The back of a refrigerator: Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, 1977, by Piano
and Rogers. Quotations are from http://listverse, op. cit. -Page 12
4. The only place you don't have to look at it: Eiffel Tower, Paris, 1889, by
Gustave Eiffel. The story, regarding Guy de Maupassant, has been widely
reported and frequently misattributed. Prior to construction, Maupassant and
46 other Parisian literary and artistic notables sent a letter of protest to the
Minister of Public Works. (WIKI) -Page 11
5. An architectural joke: The Louvre Pyramid, Paris, 1989, by I.M.Pei. The
quotation is from "Louvre Pyramid: The Folly that Became a Triumph,"
Elizabeth Evitts Dickinson, 2017 AIA Honor Awards -Page 13
6. Sweet Jeezly nonsense: Sagrada Família, Barcelona, 1882-2010, by Antonio
Gaudí. The quotation is by Professor James Acland, taken from my first year
architectural history notes, U of T, 1962. -Page 9
The Right Angle | Winter 2017/2018 | 13


http://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2016.00866/full http://www.listverse.com/2010/10/21/10-notable-buildings-people-hated/

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017

Message from the Board
Why aren’t All Buildings Beautiful?
Resilience: The Forest and the Trees
Index to Advertisers
Locations: City Lights Bookstore, San Francisco
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - Intro
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - cover1
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - cover2
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 3
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 4
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 5
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 6
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - Message from the Board
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - Why aren’t All Buildings Beautiful?
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 9
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 10
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 11
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 12
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 13
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 14
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 15
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 16
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 17
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 18
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - Resilience: The Forest and the Trees
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - Index to Advertisers
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - Locations: City Lights Bookstore, San Francisco
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - 22
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - cover3
The Right Angle Journal - Winter 2017 - cover4
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https://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/BEFQ/BEFQ0118
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