Maguire, Robert (6 of 19) National Life Story Collection: Architects' Lives

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  • Recording locations

    Interviewee's home, London

  • Interviewees

    Maguire, Robert, 1931 (speaker, male)

  • Interviewers

    Sandino, Linda (speaker, female)

  • Abstract

    Part 6: Appeal as RC conscientious objector; reference to Hiroshima, Nagasaki, nuclear wars. National Service spent working on book on joinery for John Stillman and John Eastwick-Field; their offices in Dean Street. Description of becoming friend and assistant technical editor to Lance Wright at the Architects' Journal [AJ]; subsequent post as buildings editor and beginning of architectural criticism. Comments on juggling editorial work and St Paul Bow Common commission. Efficiency of Sheila Wheeler. Macolm McKewan: his left-wing politics. Mentions designing timber house for Colin and Rosemary Boyne. Comments on skills learnt as a journalist. Partnership with KM: details. Description of RM's development of and approach to architectural criticism based on craft and modern movement tenets; mentions Circle by Gabo, BN and L Martin, debt to Arts and Crafts; comments on South Bank architects' work as 'tainted', the deterioration of modern architecture. Comments on poor state of current architectural criticism; on lack of principles in post-modernism; mentions Charles Jencks. Mentions Theo Crosby, James Stirling's Clore Gallery. Assessment of RM's own modernism. Anecdote about RM's comment about pitched roofs. Comments on post-modernism's rejection of modernist principles. Continues comments on Stirling's post-modern buildings. Story about Stirling's appropriation of RM's glass lantern at Bow, meeting him at the Cement and Concrete Association garden party. Jim Richards' foreword for Decade of Modern Architecture which praised Bow Common church and Stirling's Ham Common flats. RM's assessment of Stirling's Leicester University Engineering Building. RM's critique of Sainsbury Wing for RIBA Journal; reflects on illusion in architecture.

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