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Change Over Time

UPCOMING ISSUES Interpretation and Display FALL 2013

The Venice Charter at 50 SPRING 2014

Vandalism FALL 2014

Climate Change and Landscape SPRING 2015

Ruskin Redux FALL 2015

National Park Service Centenary SPRING 2016

3.1

Change Over Time

AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF CONSERVATION AND

THE BUILT ENVIRONMENT

SPRING 2013

SPRING 2013


EDITOR IN CHIEF

Copyright © 2013 University of Pennsylvania Press.

Frank Matero

All rights reserved.

University of Pennsylvania

Published by the University of Pennsylvania Press, 3905 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104.

GUEST EDITOR

John Dixon Hunt University of Pennsylvania ASSOCIATE EDITORS

Kecia L. Fong Institute for Culture and Society, University of Western Sydney

Rosa Lowinger Rosa Lowinger & Associates, Conservation of Art + Architecture, Inc. EDITORIAL ASSISTANT

Meredith Keller University of Pennsylvania

Printed in the U.S.A. on acid-free paper. Change Over Time is seeking papers for the upcoming themed issues Vandalism (Fall 2014) and Ruskin Redux (Fall 2015). Please visit cot.pennpress.org for a more detailed discussion of these topics and deadlines for submission. Articles are generally restricted to 7,500 words or fewer. Guidelines for authors may be requested from Meredith Keller (cot@design.upenn.edu). None of the contents of this journal may be reproduced without prior written consent of the University of Pennsylvania Press. Authorization to photocopy is granted by the University of Pennsylvania Press for individuals and for libraries or other users registered with the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC) Transaction Reporting Service, provided that all required fees are verified with the CCC and payments are remitted directly to the CCC, 222 Rosewood Drive, Danvers, MA 01923. This consent does

EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD

not extend to other kinds of copying for general distribution, for

Nur Akin

advertising or promotional purposes, for creating new collective

Istanbul Kultur University, Turkey

Erica Avrami World Monuments Fund

Luigia Binda Politecnico di Milano, Italy

Daniel Bluestone University of Virginia

Christine Boyer Princeton University School of Architecture

Jukka Jokilehto University of Nova Gorica

David Lowenthal University College London

Randall Mason University of Pennsylvania

Robert Melnick University of Oregon

Elizabeth Milroy Wesleyan University

Steven Semes University of Notre Dame

Change Over Time SPRING 2013 VOLUME 3 NUMBER 1 ISSN 2153-053X

Jeanne Marie Teutonico Getty Conservation Institute

Ron Van Oers World Heritage Institute of Training and Research for Asia and the Pacific (WHITRAP)

Fernando Vegas Universidad Politécnica de Valencia

works, for database retrieval, or for resale. 2013 Subscription Information (USD) Print and electronic: Individuals: $35.00; Students: $20.00; Institutions: $70.00. Single Issues: $20.00. International orders, please add $18.00 for shipping. Electronic-only: Individuals: $31.50; Institutions: $63.00. Subscriptions are valid January 1 through December 31. Subscriptions received after October 31 in any year become effective the following January 1. Subscribers joining mid-year will receive immediately copies of all issues of Change Over Time already in print for that year. Please direct all subscription orders, inquiries, requests for single issues, and address changes to: Penn Press Journals, 3905 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104. Telephone: 215.573.1295. Fax. 215.746.3636. Email: journals@pobox. upenn.edu. Prepayment is required. Orders may be charged to MasterCard, Visa, American Express, and Discover credit cards. Checks and money orders should be made payable to ‘‘University of Pennsylvania Press,’’ and sent to the address immediately above. All address changes and other business correspondence may be sent to the address immediately above. Typographic cover artwork by Kerry Polite. Visit Change Over Time on the web at cot.pennpress.org.

Change Over Time Running an ad or special announcement in Change Over Time is a great way to get publication, program, and meeting information out to those in your field. Change Over Time is a semiannual journal focused on publishing original, peer-reviewed research papers and review articles on the history, theory, and praxis of conservation and the built environment. Each issue is dedicated to a particular theme as a method to promote critical discourse on contemporary conservation issues from multiple perspectives both within the field and across disciplines. Forthcoming issues will address topics such as Interpretation and Display, The Venice Charter at 50, Vandalism, and Ruskin Redux. 2013–14 Advertising Rates Ads are inserted at the back of each issue and on cover 3 (inside back cover). Only cover 3 positioning is guaranteed. Half Page: $200

Full Page: $300

Cover 3: $350

Issue Closing Dates Season & Theme

Reservation Deadline

Artwork Deadline

Publication Date

Fall 2013 Interpretation and Display

8/16/13

8/30/13

10/31/13

Spring 2014 The Venice Charter at 50

3/15/14

3/29/14

4/30/14

Mechanical Specifications Half Page: 5¼” x 4”

Full Page: 5¼” x 8¼”

Cover 3: 6” x 8½”

All journals are black and white and printed offset on matte stock. Ads must be emailed as print-optimized PDF files. Images should be scanned at a resolution of 300 dpi. All fonts should be embedded (type I fonts recommended). Halftones are shot at 133-line screen. No bleeds. Submission Address and Contact Info Send reservations and materials, formatted according to specs, to: Dave Lievens, Editing & Production Coordinator University of Pennsylvania Press 3905 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-4112 Email: lievens@upenn.edu; Fax: 215-746-3636 A complete ad rate card may be downloaded at cot.pennpress.org by selecting the “Advertising” link from the left menu bar.


EDITOR IN CHIEF

Copyright © 2013 University of Pennsylvania Press.

Frank Matero

All rights reserved.

University of Pennsylvania

Published by the University of Pennsylvania Press, 3905 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104.

GUEST EDITOR

John Dixon Hunt University of Pennsylvania ASSOCIATE EDITORS

Kecia L. Fong Institute for Culture and Society, University of Western Sydney

Rosa Lowinger Rosa Lowinger & Associates, Conservation of Art + Architecture, Inc. EDITORIAL ASSISTANT

Meredith Keller University of Pennsylvania

Printed in the U.S.A. on acid-free paper. Change Over Time is seeking papers for the upcoming themed issues Vandalism (Fall 2014) and Ruskin Redux (Fall 2015). Please visit cot.pennpress.org for a more detailed discussion of these topics and deadlines for submission. Articles are generally restricted to 7,500 words or fewer. Guidelines for authors may be requested from Meredith Keller (cot@design.upenn.edu). None of the contents of this journal may be reproduced without prior written consent of the University of Pennsylvania Press. Authorization to photocopy is granted by the University of Pennsylvania Press for individuals and for libraries or other users registered with the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC) Transaction Reporting Service, provided that all required fees are verified with the CCC and payments are remitted directly to the CCC, 222 Rosewood Drive, Danvers, MA 01923. This consent does

EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD

not extend to other kinds of copying for general distribution, for

Nur Akin

advertising or promotional purposes, for creating new collective

Istanbul Kultur University, Turkey

Erica Avrami World Monuments Fund

Luigia Binda Politecnico di Milano, Italy

Daniel Bluestone University of Virginia

Christine Boyer Princeton University School of Architecture

Jukka Jokilehto University of Nova Gorica

David Lowenthal University College London

Randall Mason University of Pennsylvania

Robert Melnick University of Oregon

Elizabeth Milroy Wesleyan University

Steven Semes University of Notre Dame

Change Over Time SPRING 2013 VOLUME 3 NUMBER 1 ISSN 2153-053X

Jeanne Marie Teutonico Getty Conservation Institute

Ron Van Oers World Heritage Institute of Training and Research for Asia and the Pacific (WHITRAP)

Fernando Vegas Universidad Politécnica de Valencia

works, for database retrieval, or for resale. 2013 Subscription Information (USD) Print and electronic: Individuals: $35.00; Students: $20.00; Institutions: $70.00. Single Issues: $20.00. International orders, please add $18.00 for shipping. Electronic-only: Individuals: $31.50; Institutions: $63.00. Subscriptions are valid January 1 through December 31. Subscriptions received after October 31 in any year become effective the following January 1. Subscribers joining mid-year will receive immediately copies of all issues of Change Over Time already in print for that year. Please direct all subscription orders, inquiries, requests for single issues, and address changes to: Penn Press Journals, 3905 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104. Telephone: 215.573.1295. Fax. 215.746.3636. Email: journals@pobox. upenn.edu. Prepayment is required. Orders may be charged to MasterCard, Visa, American Express, and Discover credit cards. Checks and money orders should be made payable to ‘‘University of Pennsylvania Press,’’ and sent to the address immediately above. All address changes and other business correspondence may be sent to the address immediately above. Typographic cover artwork by Kerry Polite. Visit Change Over Time on the web at cot.pennpress.org.

Change Over Time Running an ad or special announcement in Change Over Time is a great way to get publication, program, and meeting information out to those in your field. Change Over Time is a semiannual journal focused on publishing original, peer-reviewed research papers and review articles on the history, theory, and praxis of conservation and the built environment. Each issue is dedicated to a particular theme as a method to promote critical discourse on contemporary conservation issues from multiple perspectives both within the field and across disciplines. Forthcoming issues will address topics such as Interpretation and Display, The Venice Charter at 50, Vandalism, and Ruskin Redux. 2013–14 Advertising Rates Ads are inserted at the back of each issue and on cover 3 (inside back cover). Only cover 3 positioning is guaranteed. Half Page: $200

Full Page: $300

Cover 3: $350

Issue Closing Dates Season & Theme

Reservation Deadline

Artwork Deadline

Publication Date

Fall 2013 Interpretation and Display

8/16/13

8/30/13

10/31/13

Spring 2014 The Venice Charter at 50

3/15/14

3/29/14

4/30/14

Mechanical Specifications Half Page: 5¼” x 4”

Full Page: 5¼” x 8¼”

Cover 3: 6” x 8½”

All journals are black and white and printed offset on matte stock. Ads must be emailed as print-optimized PDF files. Images should be scanned at a resolution of 300 dpi. All fonts should be embedded (type I fonts recommended). Halftones are shot at 133-line screen. No bleeds. Submission Address and Contact Info Send reservations and materials, formatted according to specs, to: Dave Lievens, Editing & Production Coordinator University of Pennsylvania Press 3905 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-4112 Email: lievens@upenn.edu; Fax: 215-746-3636 A complete ad rate card may be downloaded at cot.pennpress.org by selecting the “Advertising” link from the left menu bar.


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Change Over Time AN

INTERNATIONAL OF

AND

THE

BUILT

JOURNAL

CONSERVATION ENVIRONMENT

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2

Editorial: What Is Wrong with Nostalgia Anyway? JOHN DIXON HUNT

ESSAYS

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Nostalgia, Architecture, Ruins, and Their Preservation G I O VA N N I G A L L I

CONTENTS 28

Nostalgic Dreams and Nightmares D AV I D L O W E N T H A L

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The Spirit of Campus Past WITOLD RYBCZYNSKI

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Gardens, Memory, and History: The Shakespeare and Modern Elizabethan Garden R E B E C C A W. B U S H N E L L

82

Melancholy, Memories, and Six Nostalgias: Postquake Christchurch and the Problems of Recalling the Past

56

JACKY BOWRING

102 The Use of History in Landscape Architectural Nostalgia R A F FA E L L A FA B I A N I G I A N N E T T O

64 116 ‘‘Certain Old and Lovely Things, Whose Signified Is Abstract, Out of Date’’: James Stirling and Nostalgia MARK CRINSON

REVIEW

82 136 Literature Review ROSA LOWINGER AND MEGAN CROSS SCHMITT

102

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EDITORIAL What Is Wrong with Nostalgia Anyway?

JOHN DIXON HUNT University of Pennsylvania

‘‘Such, Such Were the Joys’’ (with the editor’s apologies to Robert Graves for titling this image). F. S. Lincoln. Governor’s Palace, Colonial Williamsburg, 1935. (Special Collections, John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Library, The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation)

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Nostalgia haunts us. Its incidence is widespread, beyond its particular role in historic preservation, not least because loss is a human condition and in learning to confront it, nostalgia may play a vital role. It may occasionally enliven our lives and may even sustain ` la Recherche du Temps Perdu, Ford Madox new ventures. Anyone who reads Proust’s A Ford’s Parade’s End, or Anthony Powell’s A Dance to the Music of Time, will encounter a variety of places, historical moments, or characters, where nostalgia has decisive, as well as frustrating, impacts. Powell’s hero, relating his life forward and backward, from the early twentieth century to the aftermath of World War II, confronts ‘‘an historical period, distinct and definable, even though less remote in time,’’ yet finds himself often unsuccessful in rationalizing ‘‘what exactly the change was.’’ Places and people ‘‘cut a savage incision across Time,’’ yet too many characters find that a ‘‘present recital [of places or people] could in no way affect the past.’’1 The memory has many mansions, and one of them may surely be occupied by our nostalgias, even though we cannot prevent them from squatting in the remainder. Nostalgia takes many forms and many colors, and David Lowenthal in his essay here absolves us from elaborating any further agenda of them: his wonderful litany—sometimes forensic, sometimes ironic, sometimes (just sometimes) celebratory—takes us through most of the varieties: imitation, plagiarism, fantasy, melancholy, grief, longing, regret (relished but not acted upon), sentimentality, reverie (‘‘marinating in memory’’2), and utopianism (a future predicated upon an imagined past). Some of these are indeed nightmares, others are dreams that may delight and hurt not. Nostalgia can grip the child in France ‘‘who wishes he were crying on the Italian side of the Alps,’’ or the lover lamenting a lost love: I will not, Helen, rescue you from Troy, I would not waste ten years upon the chase, Seeking to stamp the image of the past Upon a future which could never last [ . . . ] Once under lanterns I drank wine with you. Now I would rather posses that, than find Lanterns were gutted, the glasses cracked, And shabby waiters offered wine that lacked A certain texture I recall to mind.3

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Personal nostalgia (that ‘‘certain texture’’) does not damage anyone except perhaps the obsessive nostalgist, even if, determined to find a lost Helen, he may discover that his effort is not worth the de´tour. One cannot live in the past, with any comfort or sustenance; but it may help to visit it, though perhaps we need another term for this remembrance of things past. It is what we may call public rather than personal nostalgias that need our attention. And here, as both Giovanni Galli and my editorial title suggest, it is by no means all wrong. There are political moments when nostalgias feel sick and signal a rottenness at the heart of a culture: the Nazis’ program against Jews, homosexuals, and gypsies had its absurd (if its context were not so horrific) counterpart in ruling against certain plants (rhododendra) and against certain landscape designs, as Gert Groening and Joachim Wolschke-Bulmahn have chronicled.4 In this issue, too, we see how Italian fascism distorted the history of Italy’s garden forms to ‘‘create’’ a national and cultural historiography at odds, as Raffaella Fabiani Giannetto explains, with what had emerged in that country’s more subtle garden design. On the other hand, remembrance of things past may well be invoked to sustain exemplary modern design, even if designers themselves do not appeal directly to nostalgia. Here landscape architecture in France (Bernard Lassus) and Lebanon (Kathryn Gustafson and Neil Porter), along with architecture from Philadelphia (Robert Stern) and Stuttgart (James Stirling), reveal their undoubted reliance upon thoughtful historical research in which nostalgia has not been gainsaid.5 It is all very well to ‘‘strip away the crust of habit and convention’’ and ‘‘get behind the veneer of language,’’6 but we still need language, habits, and conventions once the crust or veneer has been removed. And these are often derived from the past. Yet there is other work that hovers precariously between the absurd and the plausible (if only for local conditions). Rebecca Bushnell has some glorious fun with the creations of Shakespeare or Elizabethan gardens in the United States; but she reserves, rightly, her greatest skepticism for the recreation of a famous Elizabethan garden in England of the 1570s. Kenilworth Castle’s recreation is doubtless buttressed by sound historical research, but it looks cheap and awful; the texture of its nostalgia is unconvincing, even if (or maybe because) actors in period costumes rehearse Queen Elizabeth’s visit to the Earl of Leicester in 1575. Perhaps that is all ‘‘innocent fun,’’ a good place for what the British call an ‘‘outing,’’ a nod to the immense appeal for historical drama from Merchant Ivory to Downton Abbey; but the tastelessness of this particular nostalgic rehash is strident. A more compelling example of garden recreation has to be when the Dutch government decided to reestablish the late-seventeenth-century gardens of the Paleis Het Loo at Apeldoorn in the l980s. True, that was an abundance of engravings of the original site, which couldn’t help Kenilworth, and beneath a pastoral landscape that had covered the first Het Loo in the early nineteenth century were fragments of basins and other remains on which to draw for its reconstruction. It still caused unease in specialists,7 yet it does reaffirm and establish a key monument of seventeenth-century Dutch culture and politics, which can hardly be said to sustain the Kenilworth enterprise.

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Historic preservation occupies a public and political arena. It always deals with the past, for that is its proper territory. It is also from the past that we derive and reinvent the forms in which we must continue to live. Preservation has a difficult task. It seeks both to make the past visible and understandable again in the present and to make us aware of it as a historical event. These are, in effect, two conflicting moves. And it is also necessarily performed in communities with often wildly different perspectives. The preservation that attends to the destruction of whole cities (Germany after World War II, Syria now) activates a host of nostalgias. Jacky Bowring’s discussion of Christchurch, New Zealand, after double earthquakes destroyed the city, makes this agonizingly clear. She confronts the options for remaking the ravages of the earthquakes the more urgent because she lives and works there (on top of that she’s a landscape architect). Yet her inquiry is complicated by her rich identification of the various forms that nostalgia takes. Too much analysis makes practical decisions harder.8 Christchurch was itself a nostalgic remake of England, and too much nostalgia gets in the way of change. It can help to deny a painful present, or it can promote commodifications of the damaged city in memorabilia and videos of what was lost. But even becoming a ‘‘ruin park,’’ replete with associations, like those that filled the ruins of Rome for Joachim du Bellay or for Byron who can ‘‘replenish the void’’ with his dreams of the past,9 it is hard to see how those memories of Christchurch will survive both the gradual loss of collective memory and the need for a new city to live in, which itself will contrive new associations. Rybczynski’s ironic play with Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, confronts us with a key instance of academic nostalgia—do we desire the spirit of campus past or the campus ‘‘Yet to Be,’’ whether in ‘‘ivy league’’ colleges, Gothicized, cloistered and turreted, or at Thomas Jefferson’s University of Virginia, with its Italianate colonnades and classical facades?10 For many American universities, their campuses require, de rigueur, ivy walls and dreaming spires. An alumnus of Oxford or Cambridge may squirm at what Nikolaus Pevsner called the Tudorbethan nostalgias of places like Yale University;11 but late into the seventeenth century many Oxbridge colleges also continued to erect and mimic medieval buildings, an appeal to earlier seats of medieval learning, to established curricula, and not least to their exclusively male inhabitants still used to thinking of a cloistered life (fellows of colleges could not marry). By the early twentieth century, English and American curricula and both students and faculty bodies had changed considerably, yet the preference, above all in the United States, was still for a collegiate ambience, a nostalgic hope that learning is better acquired in buildings that mimic Oxbridge. New universities in Great Britain (Sussex, York, East Anglia) managed, not always happily, to evade the clutch of ivied walls. In America, alumni campus reunions (for some, a sort of nostalgic return termed ‘‘homecomings’’) clearly relish these settings—perhaps more than the students did when they were there (another nostalgia acquired in time). There is surely no harm in invoking the past in universities that promote ancient as well as contemporary learning. And to preserve older revivalist buildings is also in the spirit of many towns and cities. To choose a Federal style for the modern McNeil Center at Penn carries with it a gesture to the study of early American culture that goes on

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inside the building, and, as Rybczynski argues, Stern’s design echoes much in the city of Philadelphia itself, along with its widespread use of red brick. The degree to which universities allow modernist intrusions of form or materials into their campuses is extremely varied: the contrast between the old and the new can be quaint, even absurd. A doorway at Davenport College at Yale is carved with Kitchen in gothic script and a low bas-relief shows a capon on a carving dish—but between these items has been placed a blue security light! Yet the intrusion of more visible modern items than blue security lights onto campuses—the concrete jewel box of Yale’s Beinecke Library, two wonderful and very different Louis Kahn buildings—contrasts with the revivalist work that suggests a better historicist perspective, a resonant example of ‘‘the aesthetic ideas of our times.’’12 Yet an elegant, new, and crisp modern hotel, The Study on the Yale campus, nonetheless still provides its guests with a postcard of books on library shelves labeled ‘‘Dreams’’! As has already been broached, we need a more subtle understanding of the past visa`-vis the present: Powell’s hero confronts a historical period that is nonetheless ‘‘distinct and definable,’’ and to understand the ‘‘aesthetics of our times’’ means distinguishing it from other times. Galli focuses on a variety of different preservation themes and items. Preservation needs to know its past as well as its present. In trying to understand differences between old and new buildings, cities and gardens, we might invoke the long and demanding essay, The Birth of the Past (2011), where Zachary Sayre Schiffman argues that we really only very recently learned about the historical past—dating it to the Enlightenment, for which he gives credits to Charles de Secondat Montesquieu. The Renaissance desire, for instance, ‘‘to resurrect the classical culture—to make it live again—was not historical.’’13 Whereas we tend to take the past for granted, Schiffman argues that it is our sense of difference between past and present that gives birth to the past. (And, we might add for preservationists, it allows us to register these differences.) When we recognize that difference, the past can then be seen to be enmeshed in a context with spatial and temporal reference points that established a specific habit of mind. Different historical entities exist in different historical contexts (Yale’s Tudorbethan, Louis Kahn). A firm historicism makes nostalgia more visible and easy to see it for what it is, since when we have the understanding that each culture has its own habits and customs, we cannot easily—as did the Renaissance—transpose its past into our own. When we can separate the past from the present, it is because, as Schiffman writes, we see how every event was enmeshed in ‘‘a web of relations that define it as unique and, at the same time, typify it . . . a product of its own unique process of development.’’14 This ‘‘web of relations’’ that defines the entity as unique, ‘‘a product of its own unique process of development,’’ makes it harder to replicate that at another time and place. That is both the bane and the challenge of nostalgia. A true and rich historical knowledge of the past confounds a present inclination to borrow something uncritically for the present, for the simple reason that its original ‘‘web of relations’’ is absent. If the past is conceived with a full awareness of that web, it is—to say the least—awkward to live with nostalgia uncritically. Lowenthal contrasts the search for places like home (the essential meaning of nostalgia, as Galli also explains) with our more recent obsession with past times independent of

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any specific place or placefulness. Hence perhaps the current obsession in the Republican Party during 2012 with earlier times and persons. Yet time affects places themselves, for it impinges on how we return to them, whether in imagination or in fact. I remember going once to see the house where I was born and lived for my first ten years and was astonished, as a grown man, to realize how small it was. After the Trojan wars Odysseus wanted to get to his home in Ithaca, but in his ten-year absence his wife Penelope was harassed by suitors, his estate plundered, and his father grew old. So maybe the Greek poet C. P. Cavafy was right to say, in his ‘‘Ithaka,’’ that, as the road back there is long and full of adventures, it is much better to think of Ithaka as a nice excuse: it ‘‘gave you your lovely journey, / Without that you would not have set out. / Ithaka has no more to give you now.’’15 Nostalgia may pull one homeward; but on the way there we may well and usefully be distracted and sidetracked by fresh concerns: what nostalgia can teach us on the homeward journey about the present makes the past valuable, allows us to find it acceptable and probably helps to make it new.16 Places (buildings, gardens, landscapes) are far more palpable than appeals to time, because we (or some of us) have been there, can envisage them, and may even embrace the possibility of a return to a real place. Gardens, more perhaps than other items, are susceptible to nostalgia; they are Eden, Paradise, the perfect place, the locus amoenus, retreats from the busy, pushing world of mere circumstance. Even when a modern designer like Garrett Eckbo designs an aluminum garden, the ALCOA Forecast Garden in 1959,17 its planting and seclusion still smack of withdrawal. Yet the fondness for returning to gardens, as that great novel, Le Grand Meaulnes, teaches us, is less than satisfactory, like Kenilworth Castle. Places are also fraught with visible change, where our nostalgic sense of a past cannot be fudged. For hundreds of years northern people have evinced a huge and compelling nostalgia for the Mediterranean, often unspoken and uncritical. Yet the places we envisage in our imaginations are nowadays increasingly less ‘‘real’’ than its actual shores overwhelmed with ribbon developments, beaches stacked with tourist ‘‘amenities,’’ and islands bent on accommodating ‘‘authentic’’ local housing.18 It is rare for anyone not to harbor some nostalgia, whether it is declared or hidden. But a personal nostalgia can be transformed, or can retreat into, some more public and questionable activity. The famous historian A. L. Rowse dedicated himself rigorously and thoughtfully to the world of Elizabethan England, but by the end of his career he came to ‘‘hate the guts of the modern world, everything about it, even its good points.’’19 Ian Hamilton Finlay saw gardens as ‘‘attacks rather than retreats,’’ designed to take his gardens into the modern understanding of tradition, classicism, and secularization and beyond the mere banality of the suburban garden plot.20 Radical gardeners, whether in community gardens or garden suburbs, reject mere nostalgia: ‘‘Neither nostalgia for a pastoral past, nor Luddite in its sensibility, the inner-city community garden movement restores a nature banished from the industrial city. . . .’’21 Lord Burlington created his house at Chiswick in emulation of Palladio, specifically the Villa Rotunda22: but it was less, if at all, a nostalgic stroll down memory lane than a deliberate attempt to oppose a new and classical architecture to the baroque extravagances of Hawksmoor, Wren, and Vanbrugh.23

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The Pre-Raphaelites may have wished simply to discover in the mediaeval world a congenial source of inspiration, ‘‘anachronism pure and simple, unsullied by what we have come to know as historical knowledge.’’24 But, beyond their paintings and their poems, they also contrived to contribute to a world of interior design that became a clear statement of modern concerns: hence William Morris argues that ‘‘your convention must be your own, and not borrowed from other times and people; or, at the least . . . you must make it your own by thoroughly understanding both the nature and the art you are dealing with.’’25 Conversely, W. B. Yeats rejected a ‘‘coat / Covering with embroideries / Out of old mythologies,’’ and thought ‘‘there’s more enterprise / In walking naked.’’26 We still embroider our walls and fabrics with Morris’s designs, because for some it affords an aura of a late-nineteenth-century aestheticism, both a cultivated nostalgia and a justified rebuke to either the stuffy, over-padded world of Victorian interiors, or alternatively to the austere rigors of modernist design. Others may simply like Morris fabrics for their own sakes. Nor are personal nostalgias, if that is indeed what they are, necessarily predicated upon a regret for lost time: I myself love marmite (pace Lowenthal); but not because I wish I were back in the aftermath of war in the 1940s; I simply love the taste, and this has nothing to do with a Proustian relish for the madelaine (so probably not nostalgia, only a weird taste!). If a relish of nostalgia is, as Mark Crinson suggests, ‘‘a betrayal of the present,’’27 it takes a far more strenuous effort to escape from the past and bring home from it something useful and to relocate it afresh in the present; it ceases to be nostalgie tout pure and becomes, on the one hand, a proper historical understanding of the past, or on the other, the basis of new work and ideas. Some early work by James Stirling and James Gowan clearly drew upon Stirling’s north English world of back-to-back street terraces and Victorian brickwork, and the architects ‘‘played archaizing games’’ (‘‘concrete mantelpieces and water spouts’’) with their housing;28 the resumption of these older forms and vernacular functions in new contexts transformed the nostalgia. I’d be reluctant to abandon the term nostalgia. But we do need to use it more subtly, and acknowledge that it is an essential element of historical inquiry.29 We need to analyze more that nostalgia may ‘‘not [be] a consequence of nostalgic urban planning but of economical recession.’’ Or again: ‘‘who in the world of sophisticated thinkers does not repudiate nostalgia? And who does not end up yearning, even so, for various Golden Ages of yore?’’30 When the original library catalog of the Library Company of Philadelphia was constructed, it was formed around the somewhat unusual categories of Memory, Reason, and Imagination.31 This triad excludes much that modern bibliographers would accept as useful categories; but memory helps us to recall the fullest historical past, reason helps us to access it for the present, and imagination to create something new. Those skills should help nostalgia without destroying its capabilities.

References 1. Respectively, The Kindly Ones (1962), 85, 102, 164, 177. 2. Daniel Gilbert, ‘‘Times to Remember, Places to Forget,’’ New York Times, December 31, 2009: A25,

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3.

4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20.

21. 22.

23.

cited by David Lowenthal, The Past Is a Foreign Country (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1985), note 123. The culinary metaphor does add new relish to the dish. W. H. Auden, ‘‘Mountains,’’ in The Shield of Achilles (London: Faber, 1965), 20; J. D. Hunt, ‘‘Nothing Certainly,’’ in Riverside Poetry 4, ed. Horace Gregory, Josephine Miles, and Howard Nemerov (New York: Twayne, 1961), 70. Gert Groening and Joachim Wolschke-Bulmahn, ‘‘Some Notes on the Mania for Native Plants in Germany,’’ Landscape Journal 11, no. 2 (Fall 1992): 116–26. See also the article cited in Note 13 below. James Corner, ‘‘Ecology and Landscape as Agents of Creativity,’’ in Ecological Design and Planning, ed. George Thomson and Frederick Steiner (New York: Wiley, 1997), 80–108. I should confess that I was briefly on one of the restoration committees for the reconstruction of Het Loo. See the discussion of Old Havana in Matthew J. Hill, ‘‘Reimagining Old Havana,’’ in Deciphering the Global, ed. Saskia Sassen (London: Routledge, 2007), 59–77. See G. Dickinson, Du Bellay in Rome (Leiden: Brill, 1960), and Byron, ‘‘Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage,’’ canto IV, stanza v, and passim. UVa is something of a special case, with the huge national significance of its founder Thomas Jefferson, his architectural layout of the Grounds, and the demands of a growing and flourishing modern university; see Daniel Bluestone, Buildings, Landscapes and Memory: Case Studies in Historic Preservation, specifically chapter three, ‘‘Captured by Context: Architectural Innovation and Banality at Thomas Jefferson’s University’’ (New York: Norton, 2011), 40–770. See Andrew Ballantyne and Andrew Law, Tudoresque: In Pursuit of the Ideal Home (London: Reaktion Books, 2012). Quoted in Witold Rybczynski, ‘‘The Spirit of Campus Past,’’ Change Over Time 3, no. 1 (Spring 2013): 62 and note 5. Zachary Sayre Schiffman, The Birth of the Past (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2011), 8. Ibid., 12 and 3. As quoted by E. M. Forster, in the translation by G. Valassopoulo, in Pharos and Pharillon, 77. Cf. Ezra Pound’s Make It New (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1935), where the old (‘‘It’’) is renewed. Marc Treib and Dorothe´e Imbert, Garrett Eckbo (Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1997), 87–82 and images. See the final chapter, ‘‘The Last Mediterranean, 1950–2010,’’ of David Abulafia, The Great Sea: A Human History of the Mediterranean (London: Allen Lane, 2012). Quoted in Alan Stewart, ‘‘A Crisis of Fate,’’ The Times Literary Supplement (May 25, 2012): 15. Finlay’s ‘‘Unconnected Sentences on Gardening’’ are variously available: they are reprinted in my Nature Over Again: The Garden Art of Ian Hamilton Finlay (London: Reaktion Books, 2008), 39 (Fig. 28). H. Patricia Hynes, A Patch of Eden: America’s Inner-City Gardeners, quoted in George McKay, Radical Gardening: Politics, Idealism, and Rebellion in the Garden (London: Frances Lincoln, 2011), 167–68. Isaac Kramnick, Bolingbroke and His Circle: The Politics of Nostalgia in the Age of Walpole (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1992). For the supposition that Burlington was a secret supporter, even spy, for Bonnie Prince Charlie and his attempts to invade Britain, see Jane Clark, ‘‘The Mysterious Mr. Buck,’’ Apollo (May 1989). For a critique of Burlington’s Palladianism see Timothy Mowl, William Kent (London: Cape, 2006), especially chapter 6 and seriatim. It is, however, worth comparing Burlington’s Palladianism with Alexander Pope’s ‘‘imitations’’ of Horace in the 1730s, for both sought to make an old, new, rather than merely nostalgic. It may also have been a covert operation in support of the exiled Stuart prince, seeking to return to a hundred-year-old architecture from the time of Inigo Jones under the long-past Stuart monarchy. Burlington’s motivations, whether political or architectural, have an interest for historians, and some have derided its Palladianism; but the building itself and its landscape are no longer to be assessed merely on the grounds of nostalgia.

HUNT

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EDITORIAL

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24. 25. 26. 27.

28. 29.

30.

31.

10

Schiffman, The Birth of the Past, 8. ‘‘Making the Best of It,’’ in Hopes and Fears for Art (Boston: Roberts Brothers, 1882), 152. W. B. Yeats, Collected Poems (New York: Scribner, 1996), 142. ‘‘The Uses of Nostalgia: Stirling and Gowan’s Preston Housing,’’ Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 65, no. 2 (2006): 234, where he also cites Odysseus, breaking from the thrall of Calypso’s pleasure to return home to the ‘‘finitude of life.’’ Yet ‘‘betrayal’’ is often as hard as it is easy. Ibid, 220. See E. B. Daniels, ‘‘Nostalgia: Experiencing the Elusive,’’ in Don Ihde and Hugh J. Silverman, Descriptions: Selected Studies in Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy 11 (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1985). The first remark is by Joyce Carol Oates, ‘‘Going Home Again,’’ Smithsonian (March 2010): 78 (caption); the second from a review by Paul Berman in a review of Irving Kristol’s The Neo-Conservative Persuasion, communicated by a colleague (but without a reference). Thanks to James N. Green, who presented this triad at a symposium at the University of Pennsylvania on March 31, 2012.

CHANGE OVER TIME

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Change Over Time

UPCOMING ISSUES Interpretation and Display FALL 2013

The Venice Charter at 50 SPRING 2014

Vandalism FALL 2014

Climate Change and Landscape SPRING 2015

Ruskin Redux FALL 2015

National Park Service Centenary SPRING 2016

3.1

Change Over Time

AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF CONSERVATION AND

THE BUILT ENVIRONMENT

SPRING 2013

SPRING 2013

Profile for Change Over Time Journal

3.1 Nostalgia  

A selection from Change Over Time's issue on Nostalgia

3.1 Nostalgia  

A selection from Change Over Time's issue on Nostalgia

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