Posted by Peter on November 10, 2002 at 14:06:02:
In Reply to: Re: people dont deserve architects... posted by Adam on November 10, 2002 at 11:12:31:
"stucco on fibre cement board, 'mediteranean' styled houses, which are the antithesis of our contextual architecture."
Now certainly these forms are imported. But it depends on where you are. I live in California and some of these homes (not fiberboard in most!) are an evolution of Spanish mediterranean/colonial with indiginous influences of the Southwest pueblos. This is a mediterranean climate in many areas. To me some of these houses fit formally with the landscape here and functionally with the lifestyle and cllimate. We can probably adapt some more indigenous forms (here in california a wikiup or wigwam would be reflected in dome houses), but is that also forced...and borrowed from a culture we've lost to a great extent?
NZ is new in many ways. The Polynesians only made it there about the time the Europeans made it to America. Here the Spanish culture slammed into the MesoAmerican in 1523. That's almost half a millenium of development of local "colonial" architecture, much of it based on real necessity and adaptation; a lot of it based on pomposity, ossification, and slavery too.
Seems to me we shouldn't make blanket judgements on some purist grounds. Some things work and some need new ideas. We don't start in a vacuum, we have the past cultural and historical references. But then we are not (supposively) DEAD. We are supposed to create anew and not simply mimic the last guy who came this way.
Certainly the designs that start afresh, by the great architects, are the ideal. Find some way to make that work for the average house. They can't all be custom designed.
I like New Zealand. I think you have a good font of ideas from what Maori and farmers have done with their dwellings. What you can do, if it bothers you, is create a way for architect's ideas to be available to these draftspersons and owner-builders. "Architect clinics" where you can purchase specific architectural services without being fleeced... like most of your inhabitants (the furry ones) are every year.
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