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  • Round Question about Architecture

    Culture, Future, Responsibility

    Our periodical, the old/new Hungarian Architecture has paid attention to trends in Hungarian and international architecture and changes in reflections on architecture since 1903 by fits and starts.
    Now, at the dawn of the third millennium the architecture of the world finds itself in a new situation. Simultaneously with this, Hungarian architecture is also about to change directions and even a paradigm. Architects creating culture keep transforming and experimenting, whilst staying in interaction with the existing environment – as there is no alternative.
    A comprehensive reinterpretation of the role of architecture and its place in society is part of this new course of development. However, it cannot be the exclusive case of a small professional elite: a widely established social base is a must now.

    An old-established tradition of Hungarian press is that in critical moments it phrases radical questions concerning issues of the future. At present we are to face the problem whether or not our psyche is able to shape and maintain the opposition of culture versus nature as a simultaneous narrative and theoretical human attitude in a responsible form. Besides science and art architecture also influences the new image of human beings by interpreting semantic correlations for more than a century now as its priority.

    Editors of the periodical of the Association of Hungarian Architects are convinced that architecture is a public affair and interest, and an integral part of culture interpreted in the widest sense. This is why we are inviting our readers and 60 participants of Hungarian cultural life with an all-round enquiry asking them to write down their reflections on the questions below and send them to our editorial board.

    As we would like to publish the reactions in our issue No. 3 this year, we are expecting the answers till May 24th at the latest. We also hope to publish the reflections of Hungarian architects this autumn.

    We are grateful for everyone sharing his or her ideas on the topic with us and our readers and would like to thank You very much for your reflections in advance, with grateful respects.

    Orosz István: A Fal IV., 2008

    The all-round enquiry of MÉ about the task of architecture

    1. The primary target of the creative work of architects and city-planners is the utilization of space so that we can feel at home in it whilst building a new world in the social and urbanistic sense. Something is being outlined here right now. However, we are to face the question arising: can architecture be only a political-economic device demonstrating modernization or a kind of board game with which we can reconstruct our culture and our world from time to time? Is architecture a culture, or: what is the cultural/social role/responsibility of architecture?

    2. Can local materials and technologies of different cultures contribute to a development whereby we can have our home in the world instead of experiencing homelessness and alienation?
    Is the existence of a regional architecture of the Carpathian Basin justified? What task is there for Hungarian architecture within this context?

    3. Is it possible for us to be at home in the world whilst we frustrate the hopes of our children to experience it by depriving them of the chances we have had? Does architecture – and within this wider context: Hungarian architecture – have a mission in ecological reflection and practice?

    The editors and György Szegő editor-in-chief

    Orosz István: A Fal V., 2008