Category Archives: Posts … news

Regarding The Human

Oh dear all the problems – first of trying to choose what to exhibit and then how to!

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Regarding The Human

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Regarding the Human

A selection of my life drawings will form a solo exhibition from 4th to 18th March in the centre of Lewes, East Sussex.

“in the room the women come and go …”

Through 2016, I maintained the project to post one life drawing every day – they are all collected here – and a selection are included in this show.  Some are small, some large (and the life-size figures above may not find space) – I am reeling, writhing and fainting in coils as I try to choose the final list.

Do visit – and email me for an invitation to the private view on Friday 3rd March

Open March 4 to 18  

You are particularly welcome at the weekends, Saturday and Sunday 11.00 to 16.00, when you might join me for a cup of tea or coffee.

Also open during normal working hours (Monday to Friday 9.30 to 13.30, but check there is no booked event – phone: 01273 476469)

The House of Friendship, 208 High Street, Lewes BN7 2NS  

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A day of victory for the politics of fear, loathing and division

Trump won around breakfast time (in England) today.

This is the response of DiEM25. Do read, spread, and join DiEM25!

Donald Trump’s victory marks the end of an era when a self-confident Establishment preached the end of history, the end of passion and the supremacy of a technocracy working on behalf of the 1%. But the era it ushers in is not new. It is a new variant of the 1930s, featuring deflationary economics, xenophobia and divide-and-rule politics.

Passion has returned to politics but not in a way that will help the 80% left behind since the 1970s. Passion is now fuelling misanthropy. Passion is exploiting the anger of the 80% to re-arrange power at the top, while leaving the 80% moribund, betrayed and divided. And it is our job to stop this. It is our job to harness passion in the cause of humanism.

The Establishment’s folly is causing its demise. Unable to come to terms with the economic crisis they created, they crushed the Greek Spring because they could. They pushed the majority of British families into austerity-induced hopelessness. They committed millions of Germans to mini-jobs. They conspired to keep Bernie Sanders at bay. And when Golden Dawn, Brexit, the Alternative für Deutschland and Donald Trump were the result, they responded with a mixture of condescension, denial and panic.

Politics is undergoing a shake-up that the world has not seen since the 1930s. A Great Deflation is now gripping both sides of the Atlantic, re-kindling political forces that had been dormant since the 1930s. President Trump’s use of Mussolini-like tactics and narratives is a mere symptom of the rendition of that bleak era.

 

What should we do?

The spectre of a Nationalist International that is upon us (from Trump and the Brexiteers to Poland’s and Hungary’s governments, the Alternative für Deutschland, Austria’s next president, Marine Le Pen) can only be defeated by the Progressive International that the Democracy in Europe Movement, DiEM25, is building in Europe.

But, clearly, Europe is not enough. Progressives in the United States, those who supported Bernie Sanders and Jill Stein, must band together with progressives in Canada and Latin America, to build a Democracy in the Americas Movement. Progressives in the Middle East, those who are shedding their blood against ISIS, against tyranny as well as against the West’s puppet regimes, must band together with progressive Palestinians and Israelis to build a Democracy in the Middle East Movement.

In 1930, our ancestors failed to reach out to other democrats across borders and political party lines to stop the rot. We must succeed where the others failed.

Today, on a day of victory for the politics of fear, loathing and division, we pledge to take the fight to the Nationalist International, to form an effective Progressive International and to bring passion back into the service of humanism. 

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The world of Piero della Francesca : a couple of thoughts

This post – just as we are leaving Italy for a winter in England – simply locates two or three things which, during the recent Cognoscenti tour to the world of Piero della Francesca, I promised to make available to those on that tour.

The first is the David A King’s fascinating and completely original take on The Flagellation. I mentioned his ideas only very briefly as we stood in front of this amazing painting a few weeks ago.  Click here and you will be introduced to his thesis about Bessarion (to whom I did introduce the group) and his astrolabe, linked mysteriously with the Piero painting. The best introduction is the slideshow of his lecture in Urbino, well worth a glance (click on his “silent lecture” click here, once you are on his page to download it as a pdf).

The second is a short essay I wrote 25 years ago about Urbino. It’s a very brief introduction, but while on the tour, one of the travellers who had read it (as we had circulated it to the Renaissance City tour in 2915), suggested more of you might be interested, now you have had a taster of that remarkable city.  Here it is: my-kind-of-town_jmck.

Crowds at The Resurrection, at The Annunciation, and filling the piazza in Arezzo

Crowds at The Resurrection, at The Annunciation, and filling the piazza in Arezzo

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Walter Segal – William Morris – Colin Ward

ward

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Quinlan Terry addresses the Regency Society

Quinlan Terry has now given the Annual Anthony Dale Lecture to The Regency Society of Brighton & Hove for 2016.

I was reminded of my review in the Architects’ Journal of almost exactly the same lecture (but without carps at Hadid et al) thirty years ago when he delivered it at the RIBA.

But in this scrap I’ve just found here, only a quarter of a century ago, I was talking about his charming Riverside development in Richmond:

fake

 

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Building on the Built

Building on the Built 2This arrived by email yesterday, so I’ll now have to see what can be done for tomorrowBuilding on the Built

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Assembling Segal

assemble-segal tweeFinal preparations for the Walter Segal exhibition at the Architectural Association which opened with a packed party last night. In the foreground, a “Segal” pavilion by Assemble – winners of the latest Turner Prize – which now replaces the ‘temporary little house’ Segal built in his Highgate garden.

Beyond the model, to the left, are John Frazer and his wife, who built an interactive computer model of Segal’s system in 1980s to aid clients in designing themselves; to the right of the column are Jon Broome, Segal’s partner and successor with self-build; Nicholas Taylor, author of The Village in the City and, as Lewisham housing chair, the key enabler of the Segal method being taken up by a public housing authority; and John Segal, the architect’s son (seen again below portrait of Walter Segal by his father, Arthur Segal).

Five minutes after this picture was taken, there was barely room to move.

exhib-b

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Walter Segal exhibition and debate

A Walter Segal exhibition is at The Architectural Association, 36 Bedford Square London, from 16th January until 13th February – more details here.

I have only just learned the details myself, from this tweet.Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 23.37.41

As part of that event, there is a panel discussion on Walter Segal and the Future of Self-Build, with Jon Broome (Segal’s collaborator years ago, and today a leading exemplar of timber-frame, self-build and low-energy buildings), Charlie Luxton (architect well known from regular television appearances) and Alice Graham (exhibition promoter, journalist and inhabitant of a Segal-Broome house at Walter’s Way).

It will be at the Architectural Association on 26th January at 6.00 pm.

I have written much about Walter Segal, including but not only his pioneering of self-built timber-frame affordable houses for those on local authory lists as being in housing need.

The only book on Segal is my Learning from Segal (Birkhaueser, 1989) now long out of print.  But various other writings on Segal are now available here.

WS-why not?

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