56NADFAS REVIEW / AUTUMN 2010www.nadfas.org.ukmatch the way that the country is 'calledin': those long vistas that lift the heartwhen, from a nondescript New Townintersection, one of Robert LouisStevenson's 'draughty parallelograms',you glimpse sea, estuary, woods, orHighland hills. Informal Nature is theperfect foil for the formal Art of its greatGreek buildings and the enduring dreamof the place as, on the one hand, therational, planned city of theEnlightenment; on the other as a faeriehaunt of high romance. There is astylistic and cultural term, 'RomanticClassicism'. And that perhaps bestcaptures the peculiar magic of thecapital and its complex, dual identity. should be. Nearer to hand is theextraordinary fantasy Gothic space-rocket of the Scott Monument, thenational memorial to the man who, morethan any other individual, invented themodern notion of Scotland and itshistory. Beam me up, Scotty! Thisstructure encapsulates, in its ownhistory, the larger story of Edinburgh'sromantic-classic dichotomy. A Gothicdesign was called for after Playfair hadproposed a gigantic obelisk, more suitedto Karnak or Kom Ombo.Beyond the lumpish bulk of theBalmoral Hotel is Calton Hill, properlythe Acropolis of the Modern Athens, andbearing on its summit the 12 columnsand architrave of the unfinishedParthenon. This replica was intended asa national monument to the Scottishdead of the French wars, but thefragment survives only as 'Edinburgh'sDisgrace' or 'Scotland's Folly', symbolicof the hubris that led to a building soexpensive that it could not becompleted. This 'ruined' Parthenontakes centre stage in a temenos ofnational virtue, a Scottish Valhalla wherepoets and philosophers arecommemorated. Nearby, beyond thecastellated remains of a vast bridewell, Ican glimpse the old Royal High School,by far the finest Greek building of theentire city and the one in the mostperfectly 'romantic' setting, looking outtowards stupendous, volcanic Arthur'sSeat. Rising oddly on the Calton, amongall the classic architecture, is the eclecticfolly-like, telescope-inspired tower,battlemented and castellated, inmemory of Nelson. This was a structurecondemned in its day precisely becauseit appeared an insult to the Classicalpretensions of the city, and on thegrounds that it conformed to norecognisable and archaeologically-basedGreek or Roman original. The witshoped that earthquake or landslip wouldsometime heave it off its rocky perch. Frequently you find urban views whichjuxtapose the Classical with theRomantic and the built with the natural:the dome of the University's Old Collegeseen against the rugged slopes ofArthur's Seat; the unfinished Parthenonagainst the jagged background ofSalisbury Crags; the High School andthe Burns Monument, modelled on thatof Lysicrates, with a backdrop of theCalton's wooded southern bluffs, asseen from the Canongate Kirkyard. The Old Town is incontrovertiblyRomantic, even where buildings such asParliament House have been given aNeo-Classical 'skin' for the sake ofgentility. Behind the 'ponderousAdamesque wallpaper' of the show-front, the pre-existing 17th-centurybartizan survives with its top literally cutoff. The New Town can, for all itssplendour, elegance and extent,sometimes pall. It needs brilliantsunshine to appear at its best: then theprecisely cut Craigleith stone, worked tosubtly different finishes, looks its finest.The geometrically laid-out streets seemdreich and dreary in the wet. Many of itsstreet frontages are bland. Ruskinsensed this when, before lecturing to thegood folk of Edinburgh in the RoyalCollege of Physicians (where EDFAS hasits lectures), he had walked along QueenStreet laboriously counting the hundredsof identical windows. But nothing canLeft:'Scotland'sFolly', theParthenon onCalton Hill,and the much-mockedNelsonMonumentBelow:The NationalGallery lyingbetween Oldand NewTowns
www.nadfas.org.ukNADFAS REVIEW / AUTUMN 2010 57OFFERSOffersThe latest special deals available to readers of the ReviewFrank Brangwyn: Stained GlassGoldsmiths' FairGoldsmiths' Fair held inGoldsmiths' Hall in London (fulldetails page 32) is one of the mostprestigious events ofcontemporary jewellery and silver.It is the ultimate showcase for theskills of leading and up-and-coming designer-makers in theUK, and innovative and excitingpieces abound. Admission is bycatalogue purchased on the door(£7 for one week, or £12 for twoweeks). An offer of two for theprice of one entry to Goldsmiths'Fair is available to all NADFASMembers on presentation of theirNADFAS membership cards or acopy of this article.www.thegoldsmiths.co.uk020 7606 7010Desire FairThe ever-popular Desire Fair, wherevisitors can purchase mixed-mediajewellery and silversmithing directfrom contemporary designer-makers, is returning to theGuildhall in Winchester inNovember and NADFAS membersare being offered complementarytickets. The event promises a hugevariety of stylish designs to suit alltastes, from just a few pounds tomany thousands.50 pairs of tickets to the fair areavailable. To apply, email youraddress email@example.com, or writeto Craft in Focus,PO Box 942,Maidstone,ME15 0YB,quotingNADFASWNJ2010 offer.Openingtimes are12.30-5.30pmon Friday 26November and 10am-5pm on the27 and 28. Admission is £4. www.desirefair.com01622 747 325 Pictured:Rings designed bycontemporary designer-makerShivani PatelBritish Art FairThe 20/21 British Art Fair, will take place from 15-19 September at theRoyal College of Art, Kensington Gore, London. The College provides anideal setting to see work by the great names of the 20th century including:Bacon, Freud, Frink, Hepworth, Hockney, Moore and Nash. Alongside willbe a large selection of work by established and emerging contemporaryartists. NADFAS members can take advantage of a two-for-one offer on theadmission price, which is normally £9 per person, by presenting theirmembership card. www.britishartfair.co.uk 020 8742 1611 Pictured:Street Scene, Cassis, Samuel John Peploe RSAKings, queens, statesmen andsoldiers; poets, priests, heroes andvillains -the Abbey is a must-seeliving pageant of British history.NADFAS members can takeadvantage of a special two-for-oneticket offer to visit this wonderfulbuilding, founded in 960.www.westminster-abbey.org020 7222 5152Westminster Abbey NADFAS lecturer Libby Horner has written, presented, designed andproduced an innovative DVD entitled Frank Brangwyn: Stained Glass.The standard academic details are included in the well-illustratedbook -each commission has its own PDF file, which can be printed froma Mac or PC. There are 11 films with a total running time of 210 minutes.Location films show the windows in their architectural settings and thereare interviews with experts and practitioners. Another film details the process of making astained glass panel. To buy the DVD at the specialprice of £15 including post andpacking (RRP £20), pleasecontact Libby Horner firstname.lastname@example.org or Kennett House, Kennett Lane,Stanford, Kent, TN25 6DG. Payment by cheque (made payableto Dr E Horner) or PayPal. Please mention NADFAS Review whenyou order.2 FOR 1 OFFERThis coupon is redeemable for onefree admission with one paidadmission. Cheaper ticket free.Name .............................................Address ................................................................................................Postcode .......................................Email ..............................................Entry valid from 1 Sept 2010 to 31 March 2011 during regularvisiting hours. Please see www.westminster-abbey.orgorcall 020 7222 5152 for opening timesOriginal coupon only -no photocopiesaccepted. Coupon valid when completedand upon presentation of valid NADFASmembership card. Offer applies to individualticket purchases only, not groups. Pleasebe reassured that your details will not beshared with any third parties.??