Alan Dunlop's comments
Beautiful watercolours, great to see. Very nice project. Reminds me of Utzon's Ahm house.
I've just read some of your other aj postings on architecture education Morag. It's clear if what you say is true that you have had a tough time and been treated unfairly.
However, I do not recognise most of your comments, particularly regarding the short shrift given to undergraduate students as a true representation and in my experience, as someone teaching at all levels and now running architecture units, the idea that you employ an architect to do your drawings and hand them in as your own, frankly rubbish.
I don't know where you studied but I suggest you take these issues up with that school, instead of painting all schools with the same tar brush.
No, they don't Morag. In my experience of 30 years involved in architecture and teaching, schools of architecture do everything possible not to fail a student. Every opportunity is given.
I'd also add that I am no admirer of Holl's Reid building and wrote for arq at the time of its completion, when it was being lauded by the governors of GSA
"Holl’s idea of “complimentary contrast” is curious, what does it mean? For him, it means that “you don’t want to do the same thing, if you want to respect someone; you do the opposite. You do something in contrast” In this respect, Holl has succeeded.
Mackintosh’s elegantly proportioned building details his development as a unique and talented architect over a twelve year period. Holl’s glass box seems too big for its site. It is uniformed in its elevational treatment and repetitive in its detail. Mackintosh’s art school, while functional, robust and clearly driven by the needs of students and influenced by the Arts and Crafts movement and the architecture of Japan, is firmly rooted in Glasgow and identifiably true to the materials of its construction.
But Holl's "cold glass refrigerator of a building" William J R Curtis, should not be the reason why we do not have a full and honest debate that should also consider a competition for a new building.
I don't believe I'm missing your point at all Robert, I just don't agree with you. A study of Mackintosh's writing, his lecture notes, Italy tour and his letters to his mentor Francis Newberry make his opinions and quest for innovation in architecture quite clear:
"All great and living architecture has been the direct expression of the needs and beliefs of man at the time of its creation, and how if we would have great architecture created this should still be so."
"A fundamental responsibility for architects was the task of clothing in grace and beauty the new forms and conditions that modern developments of life- social- commercial and religious insist upon"
Charles Rennie Mackintosh
Consequently, I do not believe he would support the notion of a replication, no matter the conductor.
John Byrne the renowned playwright, artist and one of the Mac's most famous alumni said today that school had “lost its soul”. " “I really don’t care if they rebuild it or not – the soul of the art school is completely gone, never to return.”
I agree, and have simply argued that the "spirit" of Mackintosh has also been lost. That also can never be replicated, nor restored.
"How absurd it is to see modern churches, theatres, banks, museums, exchanges, municipal buildings art galleries etc made in imitation of Greek temples."
Charles Rennie Mackintosh
Thank you for this Stephen, that's very clear. I heard you also recently on BBC Radio Scotland giving expert advice on both client and contractor responsibility. Very impressive.
Given Tom Inns comments yesterday about rebuilding the Mackintosh building and it being covered by insurance. Can you say something, if you can, about the likely hood of insurance cover if a temporary or phased permanent fire suppression system was not incorporated.
Given the fire in 2014, that would seem to me to be good practice and what insurers would expect considering the significance of the building?
If you recall, when the Holl building opened, the GSA were effusive in their praise and lauded the building and the architect. Now it has become the reason not to build a new building.
Other views are that it has to be replicated "brick by brick" because there is no architect capable of living up to Mackintosh alive today, do we really believe that? If so, it's a desperate reflection of the profession and architects worldwide, for it seems to damn three generations of the profession, which for me is an Architecture of Despair.
I did not know that for I've never posted a comment anonymously, on any website that was critical of anyone's opinion without having the courage to add my name.
To answer your question, and take you initial comment more seriously than it deserves. My opinion on what Mackintosh would do is not a consequence of having a hot line to the ever after but instead is based on a study of his writing, sketchbooks, letters to Francis Newbery and his lectures. Particularly his tour of Italy and his contribution to the debate surrounding the rebuilding of St Mark's Campanile in 1902.