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Title: Algarve Building: Modernism, Regionalism and Architecture in the South of Portugal, 1925-1965
Authors: Costa Agarez, Ricardo
Issue Date: 19-Jun-2016
Publisher: Routledge
Citation: Ricardo Costa Agarez, Algarve Building: Modernism, Regionalism and Architecture in the South of Portugal, 1925-1965 (London and New York: Routledge, 2016). Foreword by Adrian Forty.
Abstract: The Algarve is not only Portugal’s foremost tourism region. Uniquely Mediterranean in an Atlantic country, its building customs have long been markers of historical and cultural specificity, attracting both picturesque-driven conservatives and modernists seeking their lineage. Modernism, regionalism and the ‘vernacular’ – three essential tropes of twentieth-century architecture culture – converged in the region’s building identity construct and, often the subject of strictly metropolitan elaborations, they are examined here from a peripheral standpoint instead. Drawing on work that won the Royal Institute of British Architects President’s Award for Outstanding PhD Thesis in 2013, Algarve Building challenges the conven- tional inclusion of Portuguese modern architecture in ‘Critical Regionalism’ narra- tives. A fine-grain reconstruction of the debates and cultures at play locally exposes the extra-architectural and widely participated antecedents of the much-celebrated mid-century shift towards the region. Uncelebrated architects and a cast of other players (clients, officials, engineers and builders) contributed to maturing a regional strand of modern architecture that, more than being the heroic outcome of a hard- fought ‘battle’ by engaged designers against a conservative establishment, became truly popular in the Algarve. Algarve Building shows, more broadly, what the processes that have been appro- priated by the canon of architectural history and theory – such as the presence of folk traditions and regional variation in learned architecture – stand to gain when observed in local everyday practices. The grand narratives and petites histories of architecture can be enriched, questioned, revised and confirmed by an unpreju- diced return to its facts and sources – the buildings, the documents, the discourses, the agents and the archives.
Type: book
Appears in Collections:ARQ - Publicações - Livros
CIDEHUS - Publicações - Livros

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