Tradition vs. Technology. Periodicals as a driving force for the architectural debate: the Spanish look over the Pacific

Esteban Maluenda, Ana (2018). Tradition vs. Technology. Periodicals as a driving force for the architectural debate: the Spanish look over the Pacific. In: "35th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians of Australia and New Zealand", 4-7 July 2018, Faculty of Architecture and Design, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. ISBN 78-0-473-45713-6. pp. 140-156.

Description

Title: Tradition vs. Technology. Periodicals as a driving force for the architectural debate: the Spanish look over the Pacific
Author/s:
  • Esteban Maluenda, Ana
Item Type: Presentation at Congress or Conference (Article)
Event Title: 35th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians of Australia and New Zealand
Event Dates: 4-7 July 2018
Event Location: Faculty of Architecture and Design, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand
Title of Book: Historiographies of Technology and Architecture Proceedings of the 35th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians of Australia and New Zealand
Date: 2018
ISBN: 78-0-473-45713-6
Subjects:
Faculty: E.T.S. Arquitectura (UPM)
Department: Composición Arquitectónica
Creative Commons Licenses: Recognition - No derivative works - Non commercial

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Abstract

With a country ravaged by the Civil War (1936-1939) and internationally ostracised, Spain set about its reconstruction remembering ‘glorious’ moments in the history of the nation. In architecture, the government promoted the search for a national style, which reproduced past architectures in official buildings, while local folklore was used to ‘decorate’ regional works. However, as the 1940s progressed, some Spanish architects began to propose other alternatives. Tradition and a return to origins became subjects of debate in the mass media. Initially focused on finding their own identity, in less than ten years they began to take an interest in foreign trends and participate in international discussions. The translation of the renowned article ‘Stocktaking’ by Reyner Banham (The Architectural Review, February 1960) in the Madrid magazine Arquitectura, instigated a discussion that would extend throughout the 1960s. It focused the Spanish gaze on technological proposals, that were completely at odds with the reality of the nation. Due to its technological backwardness, Spain had to focus its attention on much more advanced countries. Architects could have looked to England or Germany, but their interest was in much further away places: Australia and Japan. Based on the articles published in the main Spanish periodicals of the moment, this paper aims to take a journey through the evolution that took place within Spanish architecture, from the most conservative tradition to the defence of technology over other aspects of architecture. The tradition-technology duality (present in Banham’s article) will accompany the opinions expressed by the authors and will reflect the true debate that was promoted by the magazines: the exaltation of rural life as opposed to industrialization and the idea of an advanced city, which, curiously, the Spanish architects preferred to seek in the Pacific. Modern architecture should present itself as the harmonious result of an appropriate original thought and an exact application of the available materials.

Funding Projects

TypeCodeAcronymLeaderTitle
Government of SpainHAR2015-65412-PUnspecifiedUnspecifiedArchiteXt Mining. Spanish modern architecture through its texts (1939-1975)

More information

Item ID: 57739
DC Identifier: http://oa.upm.es/57739/
OAI Identifier: oai:oa.upm.es:57739
Official URL: https://www.sahanz.net/
Deposited by: Memoria Investigacion
Deposited on: 17 Jan 2020 07:36
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2020 07:36
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