French President Macron’s promise to restore Notre Dame to its former glory has been shoved aside. Now Macron says it will be rebuilt “consistent with our modern, diverse nation”, and has announced an international competition to redesign the famous Christian spire.
After the announcement, architects have rushed forward to promote their ideas, with most proposing that it should not be faithfully restored, but rebuilt with “contemporary” features such as a glass roof, steel spire, or even a minaret.
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The Telegraph published an article claiming it would be a “travesty” to restore Notre Dame, while Rolling Stone quoted a Harvard architecture historian as saying that the burning of a building “so overburdened with meaning… feels like an act of liberation.”
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Breitbart report: Lord Norman Foster, arguably Britain’s most famous modern architect, has unveiled a design topping the ancient cathedral with a glass and steel canopy with a featureless glass and steel spire, which he describes as “a work of art about light” which would be “contemporary and very spiritual and capture the confident spirit of the time”.
Ian Ritchie, a modern architect most famous for the so-called Spire of Dublin – a metal spike erected in the Irish capital – is mulling a proposal along similar lines, which he describes as “a refracting, super-slender reflecting crystal to heaven” or a “beautiful contemporary tracery of glass crystals and stainless steel” – i.e. a featureless glass and steel spire.
Perhaps most controversial is a proposal in Domus, the architecture magazine, by Tom Wilkinson, for the fallen spire to be replaced with an Islamic minaret, to memorialize Algerians who protested the French government in the 1960s.
“These victims of the state could be memorialized by replacing the spire with – why not? – a graceful minaret”, Wilkinson insisted.
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