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Prince slams modernism, again

BRITAIN'S modern architects still have a formidable foe in Prince Charles, but a quarter century after he first attacked the profession in a famously fiery speech, the heir to the British throne wants to work with the practitioners of the trade, not trash them.

That was the gist of his return to the Royal Institute of British Architects Tuesday night, 25 years after he described some modern architecture as a "monstrous carbuncle" defacing the face of the city he loved.

The youthful passions of his earlier speech seem to have dissipated as Charles made a quiet speech calling for architects to embrace "organic" forms in a quest for beauty and harmony, not just dazzling abstract designs and short-term financial gains.

He repeatedly called for the august institute to join forces with his Foundation for the Built Environment in a cooperative effort to save the world from climate change and other woes.

Charles' point of view was extremely clear as he described the way modernist projects had damaged Britain's towns, cities and countryside since the 1960s.

His central argument is that modernist architects have embraced technology as a solution for all society's problems, setting in motion global warming and leaving mankind spiritually adrift.


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