(Re-)uses of historical knowledge in architectural education: The value of the client – Reginald Ford on professional practice
Mađanović, M.; Moore, Cameron; Jadresin-Milic, Renata
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Citation:Mađanović, M., Moore, C. and Jadresin-Milic, R. (Re-)uses of historical knowledge in architectural education: The value of the client – Reginald Ford on professional practice, Asylum 2021, 160-165
Permanent link to Research Bank record:https://hdl.handle.net/10652/5531
With the support of Tūāpapa Rangahau Research and Enterprise at Unitec New Zealand, a research project devoted to Gummer and Ford – an Auckland architectural firm founded in 1923 by William Henry Gummer (1884–1966) and Charles Reginald Ford (1880–1972) has been developed by a team of researchers. This paper announces the second stage of the research project devoted to Gummer and Ford, which builds up to the 2023 centenary of the firm’s establishment – seen as a milestone in the New Zealand architectural calendar. In 1921 Reginald Ford, a founding partner of Gummer and Ford, often described as New Zealand’s most eminent architectural firm from the interwar period, wrote an explanation of architectural practice titled “Architect and Client.” Ford’s explanation, written one hundred years ago, of what an architect is and what an architect does still rings remarkably true today. In framing his explanation from the client’s point of view, he naturally prioritises the ability of the architect to communicate, both with the client to manage expectations and to make clear the value of the architect, and to the contractor to assist in construction. This paper aims to show that, though commonly understood as detached from practice, history can teach us valuable lessons and provide solutions for contemporary professional challenges. With a little effort, architectural history could be reinvented by researchers and educators, reflecting all of the atest demands, pressures and priorities of higher education and the architecture profession throughout the world, enhanced by the accreditation process (NZRAB and AACA). In doing so, the teaching of history would produce knowledge that would stand the test of time and help equip students to practice architecture with confidence.