3.9.4. Follies

Many of the subjects with classical-tetradic tendencies, which have been treated in the previous chapters – like pyramids, arches, gates, columns and obelisks – come together in a special architectonic class called the follies. The definition of a ‘folly’ has been manifold, but the one given by HEADLEY & MEULENKAMP (1986/1999) is just as enigmatic as useful: a folly is a folly to us because we do not understand it.

The ‘rogue’ architecture of a folly is the celebration of the meretricious in architecture, according to the above-mentioned authors. The Oxford English Dictionary emphasizes the deviant character of this type of buildings when it stated that a folly is ‘a building erected for no definite purpose; a costly structure apparently built for fantastic reasons, or a useless and generally foolish building erected in the grounds of a wealthy eccentric’.

The name (folly) points primary to some foolishness or miscalculation. However, the French word ‘folie’ – meaning delight or favorite abode – might have contributed to the initial name giving of these structures. A further root of the word could be its association with the French term ‘feuillée’ or leavy arbour. This latter characterization had to do with the rustic setting of huts and hermitages, which were part of the eighteenth-century thoughts about the origin of architecture. This type of ‘nostalgic’ buildings were often crude and ‘primitive’ and should be separated from the sophisticated and refined classical buildings, like temples, columns and obelisks, which were essentially garden buildings (HOWLEY, 1993).

490

Fig. 490 – The plan of the Stillorgan obelisk in Dublin (Ireland) reflects the close relationship between ornamental structures called ‘follies’ and tetradic architecture in general.

The above-mentioned attention towards buildings and features, which also inspired follies and garden buildings, might be more than a coincidence. Many follies use the same geometric forms as the ones highlighted in tetradic architecture (fig. 490).  Both features might have their roots in a similar psychological setting. Consciousness of being, exuberance, freedom of thought and an urge for ‘final experimentation’ are the very characteristics of the ‘last’ part of the (universal) communication. These typical constituents can both be found in the Fourth Quadrant setting (of the quadralectic philosophy) and in the mental spirit of folly-builders.

A new definition for a folly is given here in which the folly is an architectonic building, which elaborates on the spirit of the fourfold. Quadralectic architecture finds in follies its ultimate identification. The visible invisibility of the Fourth Quadrant provides the ‘illogical’ elements of the folly. In the conscious appropriation of the multitude – both in terms of experiences and feelings – lies a whole unknown field of possibilities. These options are mapped in the outlines of the quadralectic philosophy and brought to live in its architecture. The folly is a type of building or feature, which emphasizes the elements of multiple feelings in a communication.

Sir Thomas Tresham built a lodge around 1593 – 1595 at Rushton in Northamptonshire, which can be rated as one of the earliest folly buildings. Sir Thomas Tresham had a preoccupation with the number three, and he went in his architectural plans into endless numerical calculations, which were mainly concerned with the number 3, 5, 7 and 9. The Triangular Lodge in Rushton was a logic result of his numerological obsession. It is said to represent the Trinity, but a broader concept into division thinking might also be applicable. His emblem was, not surprisingly, a pierced trefoil.

Thomas Tresham initiated during his life three different buildings: the above-mentioned Triangular Lodge at Rushton, the Market House at Rothwell (which is now a library and has no reference to a folly) and Lyveden New Building, which is situated in a flat countryside some ten kilometers southwest of Oudle. Lyveden New Bield is an intriguing Elizabethan lodge, which was never finished due to Tresham’s imprisonment for his religious beliefs and subsequent death in 1605. The orchard and moated garden, with one of the oldest garden layouts in Britain, has been recently restored. The cruciform plan might have been symbolic of the Passion, but can also be associated with black magic. The number five seems to be the most important in the numerological conception of the house.

The building of folly-like structures really took off some hundred years later. The first, ‘artificial’ obelisk was constructed in the market place at Ripon in Yorkshire in the year 1702. Another distinct concentration of follies (including an obelisk, mausoleum, the first large sham castle, 1719) was the work of Sir John Vanbrugh (1664 – 1726) and his principal assistant Nicholas Hawksmoor (1661 – 1736), who worked together at Castle Howard and Blenheim Castle (Woodstock). The former building is a Baroque masterpiece near York (England), which started in 1701 and had the obelisk added in 1714. The latter is a colossal mansion NW of Oxford, with reached fame as the birthplace of Winston Churchill (1874 – 1965), Prime Minister in Great Britain from 1940 – 1945 and from 1951 – 1955.

Sir John Vanburgh bought  Claremont (‘Clermont’) country house in Surrey (England) in 1708 and constructed a castellated house, which he sold in 1715 to the Earl of Clare. The latter added the Belvedere, which can be regarded as the first gothick folly. Great landscape gardeners like Charles Bridgeman, William Kent and Capability Brown created the gardens.

Lord Bathurst gave the orders to build a sham castle on the grounds of Cirencester House in Gloucester in 1721, which was named Alfred’s Hall, one of the first and best sham ruins. The building was the work of the first Earl Bathurst, who lived to be ninety-one. The story goes that he sat up with his friends when his son went to bed early and said ‘Let us have another bottle’.

Barbara JONES (1953/1974) dedicated an authoritative book on follies and grottoes in Great Britain. Many of the weird buildings in England and Ireland (and more rare in Scotland and Wales) are cataloged. In particular the counties Surrey, Somerset and the Yorkshires have a great number of strange buildings to the acre. She qualified a folly as a useless building erected for ornament on a gentleman’s estate. Follies were built for pleasure and were also the result of an excess of money, which could be spent in an environment of peace and security. The fact that the building did not have any purpose or intention was a statement in its own right, or could even be seen as an act of protest against the existing ‘utility’ architecture.

The earlier mentioned obelisk of Stillorgan (Dublin, Ireland) dated from 1727. It was the forerunner of many similar cross-vaulted obelisks in Ireland. Some of these structures can be attributed to the German-born architect Richard Castle (or Cassels; 1690 – 1751). He came to Ireland in 1729 as an assistant to Pearce and continued his work when the latter was tragically killed at the age of thirty-three. The Rotunda Hospital in Dublin (which started in 1745) is another of Castle’s Palladian masterpieces. The Rotunda proper contained entertainment rooms and was extended many times from the original design by James Ensor.

491

Fig. 491 – The Casino was part of the Marino House in northern Dublin (Ireland) and is a splendid specimen of tetradic building.

casino

The Casino at Marino (Dublin) – Photo; Marten Kuilman (2006).

The Casino at Marino in north county Dublin is one of the finest examples of tetradic architecture in Ireland (fig. 491/492). It fits in the tradition of Palladio’s Villa Rotunda at Vicenza (c. 1567) and the Queen’s House at Greenwich (1619 – 1622) by Indigo Jones. The Casino was initiated in the middle of the eighteenth century by James Caulfield, the 1st Earl of Charlemont, as a residential summerhouse and belvedere of the now-disappeared Marino House. The neo-classical architecture was typical for the eighteenth century Enlightment. The sculptures of Ceres and Bacchus were placed at the north entrance and Apollo and Venus on the south front.

492

Fig. 492 – The elevation and plan of the Marino Casino at Dublin (Ireland). The project was a cooperation between Lord Charlemont and the architect William Chambers and started in 1757.

The Casino (meaning ‘small house’) was designed by William Chambers (1723 – 1796) and contains sixteen rooms. The architect was apparently proud of his creation, because he placed the building as the first plate of his Treatise on Civil Architecture (1759). He never saw, on the other hand, the finished building, since he did not visit Ireland during his life.

The obelisk, known as Conolly’s Folly, at Castletown House (West of Dublin) is probably the most prominent and quintessential folly in Ireland (fig. 493). The structure was initiated by the Conolly family, who wanted to provide work during the famine and the particular bad winter of 1741/42.

493

Fig. 493 – The obelisk known as Conolly’s Folly at Castletown House, near Dublin is Ireland’s best-known folly. The first design sketch dated from 1757 and the actual building was carried out by Simon Vierpyl (c. 1725 – 1810), starting in 1759 and continued for over ten years.

494

Fig. 494 – The Wonderful Barn in Leixlip (west of Dublin) probably was a granary built on the Castletown estate in 1743 as part of a famine relief scheme.

The Wonderful Barn in nearby Leixlip was once part of the Castletown demesne. It is an even more interesting feature from a tetradic point of view (fig. 494). This exceptional building was built in 1743, some years after Conolly’s Folly and was an extension of the famine relief plan by Mrs. Conolly. The building, with cantilevered staircases ascending upwards around the exterior of the building, functioned most likely as a granary. It is flanked by two smaller conical towers, which were dovecotes. A similar folly-like building, known as the Bottle Tower (or Hall’s Barn) with an adjoining pigeon-house was situated on Whitehall Road in Churchtown and was probably a copy of the setting in Leixlip.

Dovecotes (pigeon houses), like those associated with the Wonderful Barn, were familiar additions to country houses, not only in Ireland and Great Britain, but on the continent as well. The pigeons were kept in order to supplement the meals in times of scarcity. The dovecotes could double-act as a folly, since their round or conical structure enabled fancy architectural solutions. Beautiful construction work on the inside of pigeon houses can be observed in some of the dovecotes associated with castles in the Perigord, the area north east of Bordeaux (France). Particular good examples can be found at the grounds of Chateau Puyguilhem in Villars, near Brantôme, the Chateau-fort Tinteillac near Bourg-des-Maisons and the pigeon house associated with the castle in Chapdeuil (fig. 495).

495

Fig. 495 – The inside of a pigeon house on the grounds of the chateau of Chapdeuil, a village near Verteillac (Perigord, France), demonstrates the elaborate way in which the roof is supported on a circular frame.

The tower of Andronicus Cyrrhestes in Athens, better known as the Tower of the Winds, has already been discussed (fig. 268) as an octagonal building. Its geometric design found a fresh appreciation in the second half of the eighteenth century. The architect Nicholas Revett produced, together with the artist James Stuart, an outstanding book ‘The Antiquities of Athens’ (1762), which became a guideline for the Greek revival spirit. The second part of the book, with the Parthenon and Propylaen, was published some twenty-five years later in 1787. The final volume appearing in 1816. Revett designed a temple at West Wycombe (Buckinghamshire), which was loosely based on the Tower of the Winds.

His compagnon on the Grand Tour from 1748 – 1755, the painter James Stuart (1713 – 1788) used his drawings to produce designs for garden temples, which resembled the old octagonal tower. One is situated in the park of Lord Shugborough (Staffordshire) and dates from 1764 – now hailed as the first Greek Revival building in Europe – and one at Mount Stewart on the northern shore of Strangford Lough in the early 1780’s.

496

Fig. 496 – The Temple of Arethusa in the gardens at Kew (Surrey) is an example of a four-fold tribute to the past, in this case the Pergamum-type of temple with four pillars.

The architect William Chambers, who was also involved in the Marino Casino in Dublin, designed a Greek temple (The Temple Arethusa, 1758; fig. 496) and a Chinese pagoda (1762) for the gardens of Kew in Surrey. The now Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew features, amidst its wealth of exotic plant life, a (fake) Campanile in Italianate Romanesque style by the architect Decimus Burton (1800 – 1881), an orangery (1761) and a huge Victorian glasshouse (the Palm House, 1844-1848).

A more recent example of sympathy for the folly took shape in the North-Wales village of Portmeirion. Clough Williams-Ellis (1883 – 1978) created an Italianate village here in the second quarter of the twentieth century. He bought the land in 1925 with the intention to build a dream village. ‘I thought if I presented people with a ‘light opera approach’ – made it colorful and unusual, that I might hook them on liking architecture.’ He started with a hotel, which opened in 1926, and new structures were added until 1939. The result was ‘a home for fallen buildings’, as buildings from every architectural style were transported to the village. The village was completed in 1972, just six years before Williams-Ellis died at the age of nine-five.

The building of follies was particularly favored on the British Isles. However, the mainland, with countries like Germany, France and their smaller neighbors, had its share of odd and unconventional creations as well (BARLOW & AALL, 1994; MEULENKAMP, 1995). Many of the weird products of garden architecture in those countries were contemporaneous with the creation of similar temples, pavilions, pyramids and obelisks in Great Britain. This geographical extension of the architectural follies in Europe is the expression of a specific psychological setting, which typified the cultural era known as Neoclassicism and Greek revivalism.

497

Fig. 497 – The Marble Temple in Barockpark Karlsaue (1728) is a typical tetradic building constructed in a folly-like atmosphere at the beginning of the eighteenth century in Europe.

The fine Marble Temple in Barockpark Karlsaue near Kassel (Germany) dated from 1728 (fig. 497). This historical complex was originally a Renaissance garden initiated by Landgraf (count) Wilhelm IV (1532 – 1592). The city of Kassel was during his reign (1567 – 1592) a centre of astronomical research, with an important observatory, which was visited by Tycho Brahe in 1575. The grounds were subsequently enlarged by Wilhelm’s son Landgraf Moritz von Hessen-Kassel (1572 – 1632) – known as der Gelehrte (the scientist) – and called Moritzaue.

The present Karlsaue started in 1680 by Landgraf Karl (1654 – 1730) with a distinct geometric-barock outlay. The concept changed at the end of the eighteenth century into a large, looser English garden style. The impressive Orangerie was constructed from 1703 to 1710 in a growing ‘folly’ spirit, which reached a climax in 1720 (fig. 498).

498

Fig. 498 – The position of the year 1720 is given here on the visible visibility area X (750 – 2250) of the CF-graph of the European cultural history. The exceptional ‘folly’ spirit of that particular year, as recorded in the South Sea Bubble and the French bankruptcy, could be an indication of a psychological spirit, which is present in any communication. OP = observational present.

The writer Max WIRTH (1882; p. 56) typified in his book ‘Geschichte der Handelskrisen’ the year 1720 as follows (translated from the German text, written in one sentence!): ‘An old historian called 1720 a year of such extra-ordinary and romantic projects, plans and enterprises both by private individuals and nations that one should keep this year in long standing memory not only because it was never seen before and hopefully will not happen again but also because it should warn the law makers and ministers of the British nation not to give power to people who use the credulity of the population in such a shameful and dangerous way.’

The finance crisis in France, instigated by Edinburgh-born John Law (1671 – 1729), started  with the bankruptcy of his private bank. It was followed, in the same year 1720, in England by the so-called  South Sea Bubble. This event was the second great monetary disaster in the economic history of Europe. The first financial calamity took place after the Tulpomania in 1637 in The Netherlands. These events were a form of mass hysteria, triggered by greed (CARSWELL, 1960; MACKAY, 1841/2003).

A ‘folly’ project was set in motion in the middle of the eighteenth century at the castle in Schwetzingen (SE of Mannheim, Germany). This summer residence of Carl Theodor contained a number of eccentric architectural units, like the Grove of Minerva, the Apollo temple, the ruinous Mercurial temple and a mosque. They were the work of the architect Nicolas de Pigage, who labored on this job from 1766 to 1773.

Schloss Hohenheim is situated in Stuttgart and was built by Carl Eugen (1744 – 1793) and his mistress (later wife) Franziska Leutrum between 1772 and 1793. A trip to England in 1776 brought the inspiration for an ‘English village’, which consisted of some sixty miniature buildings in Rococo style and an exotic garden (1778). Goethe was rather to the point when he remarked, after visiting the grounds, that ‘unfortunate many small things together do not result in something big’. The majority of the buildings, including the ‘boudoir’ (fig. 499), are now destroyed, but the symmetrical castle is fully restored to its former glory.

499

Fig. 499 – The Boudoir in the park of the Schloss Hohenheim, near Stuttgart (Germany), as depicted on a print from 1796.

A most fantastic set up of buildings – where the whole architectural process becomes a folly – can be found at the hunting lodge Clemenswerth (near Sögel, Emsland, north western Germany) (fig. 500). The architect Johann Conrad Schlaun built the octagonal outlay from 1737 – 1747 for the Archbishop Clemens August of Cologne (1700 – 1761).

500

Fig. 500 – The pavilions at Clemenswerth (Germany) are situated at the central hunting lodge in an octagonal way, representing the Baroque idea of a folly in its geometrical outlay (Drawing by Marten Kuilman).

clemenswerth

Schloss Clemenswerth near  Sögel, Emsland (Germany) – Photo: Marten Kuilman (2010).

France kept up with the neighboring countries in their ‘parc à fabriques’ (pleasure gardens), which sprang up at the various estates throughout the country (Lunéville, Bagatelle, Raincy, Guiscard and Betz). Many parks have since disappeared, like the Chinese-English garden in the Parc d’Etupes (Belfort), L’Hermitage of Condé-sur-Escaut and the folie project of the architect François Bélanger at Santeny (Villecresnes). George-Louis Le Rouge’s book on ‘Jardins anglo-chinois à la mode’ (1785) depicted the highlights of folly and garden architecture of this period in France.

Diana KETCHAM (1994) produced a delightful book on the Désert de Retz, a late eighteenth-century French folly garden by Monsieur de Monville. The original park contained some seventeen constructions. Its creator, François Racine de Monville (1734 – 1797) lived an adventurous life, was an accomplished womanizer, horseman, excelled at le jeu de paume (an early form of tennis), played the flute ‘as well as Amphion’ and accompanied the composer Gluck with his harp.

The Temple of Pan was the first structure in his garden in the forest west of Paris (1775), followed by a Chinese House (1777 – 1778) and the Pyramid Icehouse (1781). Monville moved into the Column House (colonne détruite) in 1782. Important visitors came to visit the place, like Benjamin Franklin, King Gustav III of Sweden (who spend six weeks at the Désert de Retz) and Thomas Jefferson (1743 – 1826). The later third president of America was impressed by the oval rooms of the Column House and proposed similar plans for the renovations of the Hôtel de Langeac (Jefferson’s home in Paris from 1795 – 1789), the first Capitol in Washington and the Pantheon-inspired Rotunda at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville (FRARY, 1950). Jefferson’s house in Monticello, on a mountaintop outside  Charlottesville, had a dome. It was completed in 1809.

The folly garden of the Désert de Retz was a fairly late example of such an initiative. ‘The grand garden style perfected by Le Nôtre in the seventeenth century had been the instrument of monarchy (…). At Versailles, 240 acres of gardens were set in a park of 4,000 acres, within a hunting forest of 15,000 and enclosed by a wall 26 miles long. By the time Monville had embarked on his garden in the 1770s, no one could dream of creating on this scale: not the monarchs, who had depleted the treasury with vast building projects and foreign wars, and certainly not the minor nobility or private citizens like Monville. The creator of the Désert knew that the era of the great parks was over’ (KETCHEM, 1994, p. 3)

The features in the garden followed the usual scheme of architectonic follies, like a tower, temple, pyramid, obelisk and a Chinese tea house. However, the house in the form of a Broken Column, with reminiscence to the Tower of Babel, can be regarded as an original masterpiece (fig. 501).

501

Fig. 501 – A plan of the ground floor of the Broken Column and the Temple of Repos in the landscape garden of Désert de Retz, west of Paris indicate the tetradic sympathies, which were common at the end of the eighteenth century in Europe.

The Barrières of Paris can be mentioned as a particular, initially practical type of folly. They were created by Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier (1743 – 1794), known from his chemical and physical laws. Lavoisier was a tax farmer, who supervised the salt tax for the Ferme Générale. He turned his activities towards custom regulations of the city of Paris, when the city was greatly expanded during the later eighteenth century. Lavoisier proposed the construction of a wall around the capital, punctuated by a series of fifty pavilions, guarding all roads. These social activities did not contribute to his popularity, and he was branded a traitor during the Reign of Terror in 1794 and tried, convicted and executed on the same day.

The French statesman Charles de Calonne (1734 – 1802) took up the idea of a walled city in 1783. The architect Ledoux designed the barrières, a kind of hotel cum customhouse for people who had arrived after the closing of the gates. His activity earned him the label as ‘the very prince of pomposity and ponderosity who created a whole string of custom-house palaces all around Paris’. Many were attacked at the outset of the Revolution, but the majority survived until the 1860’s. Four of them have survived to the present day – Barrière de la Villette (fig. 502), Barrière de Monceau, Barrière d’Orleans and the Barrière du Trône.

502

Fig. 502 – The Barrière de la Villette was part of a scheme of custom houses in a proposed wall around Paris. This project can be seen as a functional folly, like many of Ledoux works.

villette

Barriere de la Villette, Paris (Photo: Marten Kuilman, 1997).

An overview of the follies of America was given by Gwyn HEADLEY (1996). The Gazetteer of the book contains over two hundred (219) examples of architectural follies, although it seems that the definitions used by the author are fairly wide.  For instance, the octagonal house was seen as a typical American extravaganza. The subject will get some extra attention here, because the concept is familiar in the sequence of tetradic ground plans (see fig. 242). Over thousand octagonal constructions makes this type of buildings a characteristic feature for the new America.

The octagonal style was propagated in a book by Orson Squire Fowler (1809 – 1887), a social reformer, who lived about hundred years ahead of his time. He reached fame in the (now) pseudo-science of phrenology (a kind of psychology based on the shape of the head), developed by the German physician Franz Joseph Gall around 1800.  Many books, such as ‘Self Culture and Perfection of Character’ (1843) and ‘Hereditary Descent, its Laws and Facts applied to Human Improvement’ (1843) were written long before Darwin’s ‘Origin of Species’ (1859). Fowler’s ‘Sexual Science’ (1870) and ‘Creative and Sexual Science, or Manhood, Womanhood, and their Interrelations’ (1875) predated the work of Freud.

Fowler also turned to architecture and published (in 1848) ‘A Home For All or The Gravel Wall and Octagonal Mode of Building New, Cheap, Convenient, Superior and Adapted to Rich and Poor’ (as called in the 1853 edition). His ideas were followed by Philip Armour in 1860 when he built an octagonal house at Irvington-on-Hudson, a few miles from Fishkill (fig. 503). The subsequent owner, Phillip Stiner, enlarged the building and added a multicolored dome with cupola. The Armour-Stiner House is restored by Joseph Pelli. Its ‘arrested carousel’ is a tribute to octagonal living and forms an early testimony of a ‘Fourth Quadrant’ spirit in America.

503

Fig. 503 – The Armour-Stiner House at Irvington-on-Hudson (NY) is a splendid surviving example of the more than thousand octagonal houses, which sprang up in America after the publication of Fowler’s book ‘A Home For All’ in 1848.

armour-stiner

The Armour-Stiner House, Irvington – Photo: Marten Kuilman (2011).

The idea of the octagonal was not altogether original. It had been tried before in the classical past, like the Choragic Monument of Lysicrates in Athens or the San Vitale in Ravenna. More recent – from the American point of view – was the Octagon Unitarian Chapel in Norwich (England). The latter was built in 1756 by a congregation, which dated back to the Act of Uniformity in 1662 when a group left the Church of England to find a creedless and more democratic church.

One may wonder how octagonal architecture, which is associated with the ‘Fourth Quadrant’, fits into the history of the emerging American cultural period (starting its visible visibility period (X) on the 4th of July 1776 when the Declaration of Independence was adopted in its final form). This means, if this date is taken as the First Visibility (FV, the beginning of the second part of the Second Quadrant; II, 2; see also fig. 551), that ‘America’ (USA) operated in the nineteenth century in the Second Quadrant of its cultural presence.

The presence of typical ‘Fourth Quadrant’ architectural features, like the octagonal, in a ‘Second Quadrant’ setting might baffle oppositional thinkers, but not the quadralectic mind. The complete (quadralectic) communication is ‘rehearsed’ in the Second Quadrant as part of the realization of the ‘idea’ of the four-division. The ‘octagonal’ component in American follies is comparable to Charlemagne’s predilection for the eightfold in his chapel in Aachen (see fig. 250), built in the Second Quadrant of the European cultural period (see fig. 267).

The phenomenon of the folly will be concluded at this point, realizing that the choice has been eclectic. The number of follies in the gardens and parks all over the world makes any comprehensive overview a Herculean task. It must further be realized that the definition of a folly has uncertain boundaries. It runs from fun-buildings-in-general to bizarre pieces of garden architecture – including such structures as temples, castles, towers, rustic arches, gazebos, ha-ha’s and gabrielles.

The coffee-table book about ‘Fantasy Worlds’ by John MAIZELS (2000) and photographs by Deidi von Schaewen is a rich collection of  ‘the worlds weirdest, most colorful, poetic and audacious creations’. They were made in recent years as examples of people’s dream to fulfill some individual mission. Most of them are in the range of follies in their widest sense, from the creations of the Spanish architect Gaudi (1852 – 1926) to the work of Leonard Knight rising up as Salvation Mountain near Niland in the Salton Sea area of California (USA).

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Salvation Mountain by Leonard Knight (Photo: Marten Kuilman, 2014)

The ‘Palais ideal’ near Hauterives (France), made over thirty-three years by the French postman Ferdinand Cheval, is probably the pinnacle of this particular type of folly.

It is debatable of the eye-catching large bananas, oranges and similar fruits, or the dinosaurs, for that matter, which occur along the highways and byways of Australia and America to attract visitors for some commercial enterprise, also should be included. The same holds for the scrap shacks, made of bottles, newspapers and other materials by people with time at their hand – but often no money.

The real folly is an architectural entity born in a specific psychological state of mind. The phenomenon occurs in every communication. Every interaction has its ‘Golden Age’ when (visible) visibility comes to full fruition. It is often towards the dawn of this very period of exuberance – or just after its end – that the folly shapes its decadent presence. These ‘good times’, financially or otherwise, create the triumphant opportunity to experiment in strange projects by pushing the boundaries of rationality to their ultimate limits. It is good to know, as a psychological acknowledgment, that every communication has its moment of irresponsibility.

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2 reacties op 3.9.4. Follies

  1. Chang, Sheng-Ching zegt:

    Hi, I am an art historian from Taiwan and I am preparing an academic publication on “Chinese elements in the gardens of Wörlitz (Germany)”. I would like to use the illustration “Fig. 496 – The Temple of Arethusa in the gardens at Kew (Surrey)” on this page. Pls. let me know how I can acquire the copyright for this illustration.

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