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Archive for the ‘Lectures’ Category

SPAB members’ weekend, York

Last weekend, Matthias delivered the keynote address at this year’s SPAB members’ weekend, held in York, where he discussed the complex relationship between historic building conservation and the perpetuation of traditional building crafts- and the impact on training in the UK.

Fundamental to the future of excellence in craftsmanship is continued support for the exchange of skills and knowledge which comes from travel- or freedom of movement- (an essential component of traditional craft training), and an inclusive and collaborative relationship with our European colleagues.


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We were recently invited to deliver a keynote address at a conference on Lines in Early Modern Europe organised by the Centre for Renaissance and Early Modern Studies at the University of York- which was a very interesting day in general. This is an evolving discipline, offering a new conceptual framework within which to think about our cultural heritage- in considering how the structure of both material and immaterial things (the formal layout of an early printed text or a building, the construction of poetry, prose and its performance on stage) was influenced by a particular approach to space- and by the use of lines, both physical and symbolic, to delineate this space- and how this in turn shaped our perception and understanding of these things. We focused on the early modern period in particular, but of course lines and linearity define masonry from its inception….