Painting Easter eggs

In that work, there is nothing except the egg and the pattern on its surface, no mental constraints of what one “ought” to do — only the thing itself. No one really judges or censors the outcome — so it is easy and alright, not festering with complicated concepts about architecture when you do it.

The shapes and space in the ornaments took their shape, and became what they are, just to be beautiful and to have the maker’s depth of feeling visible and shining in them. That was the only principle which governed them. And this, I believe, is what one has to do to make a serious work. Naive as it sounds, it is this, too — I believe — that the great traditional builders did.

The students’ other architectural work improved greatly once they understood that making a good building is more like the joyous work of painting an Easter egg than like the practical task of being an “architect”.

(Pages 99-100)

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