Comments: Morality & Architecture

"It thus becomes the obligation of creative spirits, be they poets, architects, or whatever, to 'express' that new nascent spirit. To express an antiquated Zeitgeist is to be condemned as a poor artist or architect."

This reminds me of Schoenberg's boast that he was writing the "music of the future", to which Stravinsky cheekily replied (IIRC), "Others can write the music of the future. I'm writing the music of today."

On a slightly less exalted plane, "Archicteture and Morality" was the title of an album by the early 80s 'New Romantic' group Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark.

Posted by C.Bloggerfeller at January 8, 2004 11:14 AM

I haven't read this book, but it sounds similar to E. Michael Jones' Living Machines: Bauhaus Architecture as Sexual Ideology. I am curious about Watkin's and see how it differs/compliments with Jones'

Posted by Jonas at January 8, 2004 03:59 PM

C.B. --

First, I'm going to miss your blog terribly, and I hope by hiatus you mean hiatus, and not retirement.

Second, I know the O.M.D. album well -- bought it on vinyl those many years ago (I also had a copy of Organisation -- I think "Enola Gay" was their catchiest song).

I think they even mentioned the Watkin book as the inspiration for the album title.


Jonas --

I haven't read the Jones book; it's possible that Watkin might offer some complementary perspective (it's a book well worth reading, in any event). But Watkin starts with an 1830s architectural critic who argued that Gothic architecture was the perfect form, and even a physical expression of the Catholic creed.

Posted by Bill at January 8, 2004 10:33 PM