Archive for March, 2012

Hallfield School, London


Hallfield School by Denys Lasdun, with extension by Caruso St John.





a specific manner of dressing, as described by Count Ludovico in the Book of the Courtier:

An art which does not seem to be an art. One must avoid affectation and practice, in all things, a certain ‘sprezzatura,’ disdain or carelessness, so as to conceal all art, and make whatever is done or said appear to be without effort and almost without any thought about it. Obvious effort is the antithesis of grace.

high density


Breugel the Elder Tower of Babel


Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place.

Isaiah 5:8 KJV



Stéphane Couturier


Michael Wesely


Photographs from exhibition Spectacular City – Photographing the Future, National Architecture Institute, Rotterdam, 23 September 2006 – 7 January 2007



Every means and every weapon is valid to save oneself from death and time. If a straight line is the distance between two fated and inevitable points, digressions will lengthen it; and if these digressions become so complex, so tangled and tortuous, so rapid as to hide their own tracks, who knows – perhaps death may not find us, perhaps time will lose its way, and perhaps we ourselves can remain concealed in our shifting hiding places.

Lawrence Sterne The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman



Something is uncanny – that is how it begins. But at the same time one must reach for the remoter “something” which is already close at hand. The hidden “who” is in demand … there must be something to this case after all.

Ernst Bloch A Philosophical View of the Detective Novel

Denys Lasdun’s Hall and Central Building, Fitzwilliam College Cambridge


This was the first of Lasdun’s university buildings (1960-63):

(with MacCormac Jamieson Prichard’s New Court, 1985, in the background)



Don’t Worry, It Will Soon Be Over

We can’t decide whether it’s the use of the word only or of the word need which is the more upsetting.
But Wait! On closer inspection of the top right corner, it would appear to be a 2CD package. Our sincere apologies to the publishers for doubting the veracity and virtue of their claims

Gagosian, Caruso St John


Gagosian Gallery, Brittania Street, London, by Caruso St John:



Clare Hall, Ralph Erskine


Clare Hall, Cambridge University, by Ralph Erskine


misshapen shapeliness of shapely misshapenness


In the cloisters, under the eyes of the brethren engaged in reading, what business has that ridiculous monstrosity, that amazing misshapen shapeliness of shapely misshapenness? Those fierce lions? Those unclean monkeys? Those huntsmen blowing their horns? It becomes more delightful to read the marbles than the manuscripts and spend the day admiring those things rather than meditate on the Law of God.

St Bernard of Clairvaux would seem to concur that ornament is a crime