ALOIS RIEGL THE MODERN CULT OF MONUMENTS PDF

Riegl defines the monument as an artefact that retains in itself, intentionally or unintentionally, an element of the past — a definition which effectively encompasses any object resulting from human activity. A significant distance in time from the beholder is therefore what first of all characterises a monument. For Riegl, different ages encourage the cult of different values. He believes that our attitude towards conservation depends entirely upon which values we attribute to the monument. A detailed summary of his text is not possible here, but a brief outline of the values classified by Riegl might be useful. Memory values pertain to the satisfaction of psychological and intellectual needs.

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Since then, critics of the Venice Charter have attacked many of its premises, in particular, its focus on material authenticity. Ever larger and more complex objects—vernacular building types, neighborhoods, and landscapes—are treated according to the same museological standards once reserved for monuments and art objects. This process has, in effect, frozen large swathes of the built environment in time—a situation that is unsustainable in cultural, social, and economic terms.

This tremendously influential essay is generally seen as the beginning of the modern approach to monuments. Informed by his training in law and art history and by his experience as a museum curator, it is a carefully crafted treatise with a practical aim: to outline a method for managing the growing body of antiquities in the charge of the state.

Visit Project Muse to read other articles featured in this issue. Menu 8. Change Over Time is a semiannual journal publishing original articles on the history, theory, and praxis of conservation and the built environment. Each issue is dedicated to a particular theme as a method to promote critical discourse on contemporary conservation issues from multiple perspectives both within the field and across disciplines. Themes are examined at all scales, from the global and regional to the microscopic and material.

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Alois Riegl and the Modern Cult of the Monument

The Venice Charter reaffirmed the historicist principles of the Athens Charter , recasting them in terms of universal values. In the intervening decades, critics of the Venice Charter have attacked many of its premises, in particular, its focus on material authenticity. Yet few have analyzed this dense and tremendously influential essay in its historical context. An art historian, lawyer, and museum curator, Riegl wrote his essay with a practical aim: to develop a method for managing the growing body of antiquities in the charge of the state.

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Since then, critics of the Venice Charter have attacked many of its premises, in particular, its focus on material authenticity. Ever larger and more complex objects—vernacular building types, neighborhoods, and landscapes—are treated according to the same museological standards once reserved for monuments and art objects. This process has, in effect, frozen large swathes of the built environment in time—a situation that is unsustainable in cultural, social, and economic terms. This tremendously influential essay is generally seen as the beginning of the modern approach to monuments.

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