Who Are We, Where Do We Come From, and Where are We Going?

architect Jože Plečnik
project A Tombstone for Andrej Plečnik's Grave, Vodice, Slovenia
written by Aleš Vodopivec


“When I think of architecture, I see images” says Peter Zumthor. When I think of architecture, I see the image of Plečnik’s grave in Vodice. And I am more and more convinced that this image reflects all that architecture means to me. It reflects my spiritual debt to Professor Ravnikar, who made me aware of the significance of a clear concept and showed me the way to limitless horizons of the contemplative world of architecture. It reflects my deep respect for the masterful perfection of Plečnik’s architecture, my awe for the extraordinary deliberation he built into his designs, and last but not least, it reflects architecture’s inexplicable power of expression, which goes beyond formal issues. In a way, this piece of architecture outlines the fundamentals of my relationship with the profession. It is like a key to my understanding of what architecture is in its essence, or at least a reminder that in architecture, the concept is more significant than the form. Consequently, as Georges Bataille points out, architectural form is there to secure this dominance of idea over matter.