Kenneth Frampton described Critical Regionalism
Sydney's Opera House mediates between the city and the ocean
as a means of creating an architecture which is neither a vacantly ‘international’ exercise in modern technology nor a ‘sentimental’ imitation of vernacular buildings. It is regionalist in the sense of not being internationalist and critical in the sense of not being a slavish imitation of older forms. Christine suggested
that the Sydney Opera House exemplifies this approach but I wonder if Jorn Utzon’s great project is not more suited to the term Critical Localism. As the photograph shows, the cultural character of the locality is part-Victorian and part-American. Almost turning its back on the the city, the Opera House opens its sails to the harbour and wide world. So I would say that Utzon’s design responds to the region more than to the locality.
: the folks who plonked the tent in front of the Opera House were plonkers].
(Image courtesy Dave Keeshan)