Towards a qualified classicism
Zajkowski, Michael M.
Sherman, William H.||Cannady, William T.
Master of Architecture
The intent of this thesis is to first, demonstrate that classicism remains valid as an underlying idea for the creation of architecture and second, that in order to exist in a meaningful and critical position, classicism must be 'qualified.' The term qualification is meant to describe the shift that has occurred in the nature of classicism since the Enlightenment. Classicism is no longer absolute and pure. The purity and unity of classical canon have been violated, compromised, and inverted since this time. A qualified classicism acknowledges this violation not through pastiche or image appropriation, but in a critical synthesis. There is no turning back to the times of the ancients, for modernism is now part of our architectural heritage as much as classicism is. However, classicism has been the basis for Western architecture for over 2, years -- and at its heart lie principles which are timeless and permanent. Idealization, hierarchy,and centrality are among several principles that may form a solid basis for an architecture, regardless of style. These principles may be used as a syntax or datum, which may them be? qualified by more relative and contemporary concerns. The introduction to the paper establishes the validity of classicism and the need for qualification. The next two sections describe how Sir Edwin Lutyens and Le Corbusier approach the idea of a qualified classicism in their work. The examples used for each are the Viceroy's Residence in New Delhi, and the Capitol complex at Chandigarh, respectively. They were chosen because of their unique proximity in time and place, and because they demonstrate that a qualified classicism can be approached from two poles; Lutyens from the normative and Corb from the relative. In the conclusion , several points are set forth which delineate the characteristics for a qualified classicism. The design project accompanying this thesis is a design for a city hall in College Station, Texas.