This fascinating study of the development of architecture, and the impact of architectural models on this evolution, in southeast Asia, draws its early examples primarily from surviving Hindu-Buddhist monuments in Cambodia and Java. Dumar?ay argues that, despite the fact that individual physical locations may merit innovation, new construction nevertheless tends to be constrained by pre-existing architectural models, appropriate to the new situation or otherwise, which are held within the collective conscience of a given culture. This tendency may further be strengthened in the event that an insecure regime seeks to employ architectural monuments to aggrandize its political position. The inappropriate use of models may also occur when architectural styles are transplanted from one culture into another. A break from the models of the past��and thus true innovation��may develop only when a master builder both has sufficient confidence in his own artistic vision and works within a context that allows him the freom to express this vision.
Architecture and Its Models in South-East Asia
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