By N. John Habraken
According to a long time of private remark, Habraken’s very important new booklet seriously examines the function of the architect as a qualified descendent of Palladio, and as an inheritor to his architectural legacy. Seven cutting edge and punctiliously crafted essays discover the widening ideological schism among today’s architects, whose middle values, id and schooling stay rooted within the Renaissance legacy of making crafty “masterpieces,” and the sensible calls for on a career which acts inside an evolving, ubiquitous and self sufficient outfitted atmosphere or “ﬁeld.”
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Extra info for Palladio's Children: Essays on Everyday Environment and the Architect
The second constraint was local vernacular tradition, both in terms of form and in employment of local craft strongly tied to it. Stucco on brick was a common building finish. The red tiled roof was found on farm and city houses alike. Tripartite division of the façade – the open middle bay flanked by windows on both sides – characterized the Gothic palace and was part of the vernacular laguna building tradition of Venice. The columniated portico was a feature of antiquity. In nearby Padua, Palladio’s birthplace, the streets were lined with porticos in his time, as they are today.
7 Vitruvius explains Architecture; Alberti introduces the persona of the Architect. In Alberti’s eyes, the architect, unlike the traditional master builder, is not someone who carries on a tradition, applying ingenuity to perpetuate and perfect it. Rather, the architect is someone who “knows how to devise through his own mind and energy . . ” Architecture is no longer the expression or product of a people or of an entire culture, to which the master builder devotes a lifetime of hands-on study.
In a time full of energy and new expectations, they applauded this new assertion of professional power. Ancient custom credited patrons with “building” works of renown: the emperor Hadrian “built” the Pantheon, Vespasian “built” the Coliseum. In contrast, Alberti’s patron depends on the architect, a free agent, for the provision of shelter. The new relation between architect and patron stems from the notion that all that is built must be equally dependent on the Architect. For Alberti, this rests on historical fact.
Palladio's Children: Essays on Everyday Environment and the Architect by N. John Habraken