Architecture of Cultural Confluences
Master Class by Riyaz Tayyibji

The three hour lecture presentation was divided into 2 parts. The first part dealt with the dialog between Greek and Roman culture and its reflection in their respective architectures. Whereas the Greeks developed a culture on the basis of the democratic individual or citizen as an atomic entity, Rome grew out of the idea of the city state that gave rise to the first articulation of the ‘public’. This first part concluded with a discussion on a contemporary note around ideas of individual freedom and collective action.

The second part of the lecture presentation was looked at Roman architecture as the genesis of both Christian and Islamic architectural traditions. It looked at the development of these two cultures in terms of the ‘settler’ and the ‘nomad’. It looked at the technology of the horse, the camel and the tent (as technologies of movement) in comparison with more sedentary agricultural ones of ‘domestication’. The implications of this on architecture was the primary thread of the discussion. The session ended with a contemporary note with an eye on the contemporary crisis in the middle east.

The lecture was beamed live on YouTube and it is available on YouTube.