Thursday, April 16, 2009

Reflections: Junctions

‘Reflections’ is most emulated in the idea of stylistic junctions and conflicts between ancient revivals and modern materials through France, England, and the newly reformed United States. I think this section is called reflections because the nations looked back to the past for revivals and ideas for future designs, the reintroduction of the Gothic style, the interest in foreign merchandise from trade routes, and the iron and class combinations all helped to spur changes and junctions between styles.

Artifacts of influence in this junction of design styles and ideas appear as trade goods of foreign cultures such as Asian influence clothing and china ware, and the plans from ancient designs. When the trade route from Asia to Europe opened a whole new influx of ideas and inspirations appeared and was appealing to the people of Europe as the designers of both nations attempted to design in a new way. Asian countries were changing up designs from their own china and goods to be more appealing to the traders of Europe while still giving away a little of their design flair. A term, used especially from the inspiration of Japanese trade and woodblock art was called Japonisme.

Space was an important idea to the English, especially when talking about landscaping in the early part of Reflections, based on the classical ideas of Palatio: Indigo Jones and John Vanbrugh re-worked the idea of landscape architecture with the Queen’s House and landscapes of Castle Howard. The English idea was to use the natural part of nature to create beauty in design rather then make nature more ornate then it really was. This less formal idea was a junction in that is transferred the idea of ornate gardens that were ostentatious to the beauty of nature itself.

Buildings such as the Crystal Palace and many other buildings of “Glass and Iron” were junctions in how everyone thought about design from the building materials all the way down to the building forms themselves. Everyone was so used to the idea of concrete, stone, and other past building materials that it was a major culture shock to use the new materials that interfered with the ways of thinking about Design.

The place each epiphany or junction in architecture and design took place in was an influencing factor on what the change was. In the European nations when the trades started from Asia, the people were influence by the Asian culture and the Asians were influenced by the European culture in order to create more appealing products to the people of Europe from the trade route.

The beginning of junctions between the revival periods that brought on the House of Parliament in England and the revolution of new material with buildings such as the Crystal Palace was a direct symbol of change and things to come in the future of design. It was a symbol that design would continue to move forward rather than be stuck in the ways of ancients and older ideals.

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