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Aurél Benárd

Abstract

Reykjavík’s largest church, Hallgrímskirkja has become a symbol and an important part of Icelandic national identity. This edifice result of conscious planning process with its location and form reinforce its national significance. Its impact derives from several elements. Buildings symbolizing the identity of communities are usually quite conservative in form. Hallgrímskirkja, however, has distinct individual features that stem from architect Guðjón Samúelsson’s aspiration to express the nation’s identity in a specific architectural form.

Open access

Rudolf Klein

Abstract

This paper investigates the links between some oriental cosmologies and modern architecture, stemming from major non-Western religions, such as Buddhism, Islam and Judaism as well as from Einstein’s theories. It analyses both the direct impact of these concepts, influencing modernism at a theoretical level, and their indirect impact through historic non-Western architecture, mainly Buddhist and Islamic. While modernist theoreticians and architects frequently emphasised functional and technical priorities of modernism, I argue that modernism was far less rational than it is commonly thought, and that it was substantially influenced by non-Western thought, particularly in its early period.

This paper considers two main innovations of modernism resulting from oriental concepts of void: (1) the flat and undecorated façade, the avoidance of traditional ‘façade-discourse’, (2) the promotion of space as the main objective of architecture. The impact of Buddhist, Islamic, Judaic and the Einstenian cosmologies on modernism are considered