Lars Spuybroek’s “The sympathy of Things” to find an answer to the question why, in a recent interview, he qualified abstract art as a horrible dogma, and linked modernism to genocide and the holocaust.
In the same interview he said to have changed his architects practice for writing, because designing went to slow and writing is more precise than building. So my expectations were stirred.
The ambition of the book is to "update" the 19th century’s easthetic philosopher John Ruskin, not in a historical approach but as a visionary project resulting in a new way back to beauty, translating Ruskins ideas of crafting in terms of our digital age and using the internet as a simple tool available for everybody. The "sympathy of things” refers specifically to the interaction or collaboration of forms and structures in Gothic architecture.
To reach this high-pitched goal the first things to reject and forget are the extensive generalization, sublimation and reduction of the modern, abstract and minimal art of the 20th century, because they meant death for real, universal and living beauty. According to Spuybroek that is.
Very interesting indeed, but is the last sentence of his statement entirely true? I don’t think so. I think it is a horrible simplification and an exaggeration as well.
(to be continued)