Louis KAHN si studentii


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I must reflect on the mystery of circumstances that lead a man into paths which he could not have anticipated. I was to be a painter. There was no question about it, until my last year in high school when a course on architecture hit me so strongly,

Trebuie sa reflectez asupra misterului circumstantelor care-l conduc pe om in directii pe care nu le poate anticipa. Ar fi trebuit sa fiu pictor. Nu exista nici-o indoiala in privinta asta, pana cand, in ultimul an de liceu, am fost foarte impresionat de un curs despre Arhitectura.

I knew I would be an architect. The course concerned the earliest architecture: Greek, Roman, Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance. I felt a great happiness. I had no question as to what my career would be. I had no idea, of course, of modern architecture. Now, though we are living in the field of modern architecture, I feel a closer association to this marvelous architecture of the past than I do to the architecture of today. It is constantly in my mind as a reference. I say to this architecture, „How am I doing, Gothic architecture? How am I doing, Greek architecture?”

Am stiut ca voi fii un architect. Cursul era despre Arhitectura veche greaca, romana, romanica, gotica, renascentista. Am simtit o mare fericire. Nu se mai punea nici-o problema despre care va fi cariera mea viitoare. Nu aveam, bineinteles, nici-o idee despre arhitectura moderna. Acum, desi traim in plina arhitectura moderna, ma simt mai legat de aceasta minunata arhitectura a trecutului decat de arhitectura de astazi. Ea este permanent in mintea mea ca un element de referinta. Ma intreb mereu: “ce parere ai, Arhitectura Gotica ? ce parere ai, Arhitectura Greaca ?”

Everyone has a figure in his work to whom he feels answerable. I also say to myself, „How am I doing, Corbusier?” You see, Corbusier was my teacher, and Paul Cret was my teacher. I have learned not to do as they did, not to imitate, but to sense their spirit

Fiecare din noi are in opera sa un model cu care se confrunta. Ma intreb totodata: “ce parere ai, Corbusier ? Vedeti, Corbusier mi-a fost profesor, ca si Paul Cret. Am invatat nu “sa fac” cum au facut ei,  sa nu imit, ci sa prind spiritul lor.

The work of students should not be directed to the solution of problems, but rather to sensing the nature of a thing. But you cannot know a nature without getting it out of your guts. You must sense what it is, and then you can look up what other people think it is. What you sense must belong to you, and the words of teaching must not in any way be in evidence, so com­pletely has it been transformed into the singularity.

Lucrul cu studentii nu ar trebui sa fie dirijat in directia solutionarii problemelor, ci mai curand in sensul intelegerii naturii lucrurilor. Dar nu poti sa cunosti o natura fara sa o faci sa iasa din strafundul tau. Trebuie mai intai sa o intelegi tu in profunzime, pentru ca apoi sa afli ceea ce cred altii ca este. Ceea ce intelegi si simti trebuie sa-ti apartina, iar cuvintele prin care ii inveti pe studenti nu trebuie in nici-un fel sa iasa in evidenta, intr-atat trebuie sa se fi transformat in originalitate.

When I talk to students, the one feeling I always have is that every one of them can surpass me in my work. They don’t, but my attitude is that being in school is like being in a chapel, and my duty is to write psalms. I come refreshed and self-challenged from the classroom. I learn more from the students than I teach. This is not an idle thing. It is not what they teach me, but what I teach myself in the presence of singularities. Teaching is an act of singularity to singularity. It is not talking to a group. They teach you of your own singularity, because only a singularity can teach a singularity.

Cand le vorbesc studentilor, sentimentul pe care l-am avut intotdeauna este ca oricare dintre ei ma poate depasi in ceea ce fac. Nu se intampla asta, dar convingerea mea este ca a fi in scoala este ca si cand as fi intr-o capela, iar datoria mea este sa scriu psalmi. Ies din clasa improspatat si transformat. Invat de la studenti mai mult decat predau. Iar asta nu este un lucru rau. Nu este vorba de ce aflu de la ei, ci despre ce ma invat singur in prezenta unor originalitati. A preda este un act de originalitate adresat unei originalitati. Nu este vorba aici de a te adresa unui grup. Ei te invata despre propria-ti originalitate, deorece numai o originalitate poate invata o alta originalitate.

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