Chapter 1 of 24
Assembly System By Joseph Paxton, Crystal Palace, 1851
The art of joining seems to me a good title for what I may call a minor manifesto. As an aftershock of the Industrial Revolution or even in between, the "Great Industrial Exhibition in 1851" which was sponsored and inaugurated not only in its content but also its envelope, so to speak, by Queen Victoria. This act was a formidable contribution to the civilisation of mankind which cannot be overestimated. And, to nobody's surprise, the art of building today has since that time really developed and progressed accordingly in a remarkable way. In addition to the availability of new energy resources such as nuclear energy, whose first plant was built in England and, by the way, this time personally inaugurated by Queen Elizabeth II and those great achievements in the sciences, open almost unlimited avenues of approach which men now can master and which may make us look into the future with confidence. Of course, there will always remain arguments concerning principles which could be disputed. For instance, such as arts and crafts versus science and technology. Or, one could speak about emerging new philosophies, influenced by political, social, economical, scientific or technological, and consequently design principles, all of them triggered by the mass market, automation, time and motion phenomena’s, universal communication and information media; certainly not to forget the all-controlling computer sciences as well as soft and hard-ware, and higher quality demands for artificially, man-invented, synthetic materials and so on and so on.