It seems beyond doubt that Francisco Franco Bahamonde, Leader of Spain by the Grace of God and the One True Church, the Catholic Apostolic and Roman was about to order early 70 removal of all Christian elements were added to the Mosque Mosque of Cordoba after the conquest of the city by the hosts of a Castilian king. I mean the dismantling and removal of the two cathedrals, the primitive Gothic, XIV and XVI Renaissance, in addition to the dozens of chapels, embedded therein for Catholic worship in succeeding centuries. This desire of El Caudillo is well documented in an article by Juan Contreras, Marquis of Lozoya, the then Director of Fine Arts in the newspaper AND the 5 November 1972. In him the art historian will adjudged him, in a surge of gratitude to the Islamic world, so effectively that had contributed to the victory, to dismantle and move the Gothic-Renaissance cathedral of Cordoba Mezquita restore its stylistic integrity and his former target to be, as it was in the tenth century, spiritual center of Islam.
Such announcement produced an entertaining debate logically at all levels affected, both practically and theoretically, both internally and externally for that sample will desire more powerful than Spain. But mostly occurred espeluznamiento cassocks all the country. I still remember, had then 16 years old, the share of that strictly local controversy. Among my memory nebulae appear turbid readings shreds of newspaper articles of the time and class discussions and friends, but clearly the illusion that gave me the opportunity to carry out the project. As early monument lover, disfrutante continued its scope and amateur Andalusian themes frequently dreamed that this disassembly occurred and the Mosque of Cordoba returned to its original unbroken forest of columns as was conceived by the great architects emirales.
The only sources that until recently had to take a little story of the case were the book to publish Fulfilled Nieto, The Mosque-Cathedral of Cordoba and ICOMOS (City of Cordoba, 1976), in which the canon archivist partial gathered it tendentiously, ember snuggling his sardine as a party that was, what could track among the publications of local scholars and memoirs and patient combing the pages of the press of the time. Lo and behold, the network gave me the surprise of finding work almost done, superbly documented and a detailed study of the concomitant elements of both the project and its answer. This is a labor José Ignacio Cassar Pinazo, Valencian architect and urban rehabilitation expert who picks it up like illustration on the theme of the repristinación monuments in a monograph on the subject published in the number 2 (nov. 2004) Journal monumental restoration Partal Papers. The work is based on the analysis of two articles published in the journal Architecture between year 1972 and 1973 and consists of two parts. A, reproduction, in such deplorable conditions that prevent their reading of the text of Rafael Castejón published in the 178 of the magazine (September. 1973) qualified Data for the Restoration of the Mosque of Cordoba, in which Don Rafael presents a study of the viability of the extraction and transfer to another location in the Catholic cathedral and the subsequent repristinación, reconstruction of the original parts removed for the construction of that. The study of Castejon is astonishing thoroughness and leaves no detail to control. In the second part José Ignacio Cassar Pinazo analiza el otro artículo publicado esta vez en diciembre de 1972 (No. 168), under the heading Mosque of Cordoba and enthusiastic subtitle The exciting topic of the Mosque of Cordoba has jumped to the street a series of articles that referred to that hit called the controversy of the Mosque.
I will not repeat what I invite you to find work as exciting reading in which the Valencian architect dissects each of the interventions both for and against and restorative theories contrasts with the current time and, followed by an analysis of the historical context, but especially when there were political. I find it extremely interesting especially intervention Luis Moya, architect and member of the Academy of Fine Arts of San Fernando, in which he defended, denounce violence apart from the possible action that comes to compare with those of Viollet-le-Duc, it forger of Carcasonne, that the nature of composition open and diachronic original Mosque of Cordoba (which functions as a panel of bees, built by repetition of a cell, indefinitely, both in space, and in time, opposite the synchronously closed Christian monumental conception defined by compositional dependence of a single center marking the compositional hierarchy) does not necessitate the destruction of the Renaissance work and therefore increase the number of cells. It would add nothing to this impression the viewer, this glimpse of infinity that exists today because the juxtaposition hierarchy obeys laws, or recognize limits on its size or additives that you could do in later times. This vision was later shared by Rafael Moneo and Anton Capitel in two articles published in the 80 in the same journal Architecture, but, según says Cassar, since I have not had direct access to the same, granting to the proceedings of the XV and XVI added value in defining more formal and compositional richness and, accordingly, architecture for building. I can not agree less with that statement of the two architects, Moya did not even dare to hold, maintaining a discrete separation artistic consideration of the various elements. I do not share, as I tried to show elsewhere, Moya holding thesis, in defense of the unity of the building, of the importance of Christian cathedral as guarantor of the life of the, from the time which documents the struggle of the civil authorities Cordoba from earliest times to keep the original appearance and integrity of Islamic monument in conflict with the claims of successive and continuous Cabildo modify or, presumably, tear it down to replace it with a building fully Christian. It speaks only of the consciousness of the importance of keeping guarded carefully and always there by the people and civil authorities Cordoba.
Just based on the same approach of Moya, but using it in the opposite, Rafael de la Hoz argues that the construction of the cathedral marked the assassination of Idea, the original builders conceived a space open and flexible, dynamic crecedero opposite space-inspired classic Greco-Roman, it is always drawn in a closed and self-statically fixed. Hence, Cassar says, above the historical accumulation, spatial understanding of the earlier buildings and the relationships between them that reveals the performance of Hernán Ruiz, of the materiality of interventions, La-Hoz gives precedence "Idea" as the conceptual underpinning of the architectural. And above all, in defense of his agreement with the intervention repristinadora.
It can be detected in this controversy echoes of the classic struggle between the different schools of conservators and restorers since the mid-nineteenth century come to grow the wealth of ideas about maintaining the artistic heritage of the peoples, from sacralizador purism of Ruskin until idealism of the Sickle, commitment through the museum needs of Boito o la critical restoration of Brandi. I would add as interesting contribution that makes itself Cassar Article by many of the actions depend on equity in the case from the Spanish Civil War of conditions external to the monumental status of edicifios, ie as mere instruments of policy, subject to the requirements of new liturgies imperialists and nationalists of Franco (Note 30). Although in the case of the intervention in the Mosque of Cordoba that interpretation should have far more intricate causalities.
Regarding the participation of El Caudillo anyway does not seem that the idea itself arose from the then quite prejudiced mind the bloody dictator and there is sufficient evidence that actually the whole attempt purification, because that was the term that was used to the horror of the Catholic hierarchy, Islamic building was due to a fabulous concoction that he alone gigs the aforementioned prodigious erudo Cordoba Rafael Martinez Castejón and Arizala. Córdoba known enough and with a good resume and biographical sketch written in the article Cassar in Partal Papers remarcaré only local sage who served in various fields of historical knowledge and artistic, particularly the Andalusian, for most of the last century theories and actions being due to the various positions he held with power to direct action really answered by other more credentialed experts nationally and internationally, primarily by the architect and archaeologist Leopoldo Torres Balbás.
Probably the idea or at least its possibility of realization came when he acted as guide for the Mosque King Faisal of Saudi Arabia, Year 1966. We do not know if this auspicious occasion our efforts conspirator slide got the idea somehow in the actual ear but something must have given the role the play in the matter Wahhabi subsequently offering 10 million a Leader for execution. Once the project sketched in magín be devoted body and soul to get the necessary support to carry out. Y le lacked important contacts.
What we know is that in the year 70 and were more or less defined the contestants and was looking for a battlefield. Cassar himself in his article clearly defines the champions of each of the sides, Castejón and Canon Nieto Fulfilled, and has faced heroically defending their positions surrounded by his supporters and his magical powers. The architect Rafael de la Hoz Arderius, Cordoba installed in Madrid but closely linked to his hometown must have been convinced by Castejón, although we can not rule out vice versa, and at that time we found convinced, as we have seen, of goodness and feasibility of the project, also being placed in a key position as was General Manager of Architecture from 1971. It's him who's responsible Fulfilled Nieto interest in the project were to be Franco in the book about the meeting in Cordoba Canon ICOMOS and then the council responsible for the monument published years later (1976).
Other support that got the project were the direct the Director of Fine Arts Marqués de Lozoya, of the prestigious (although highly contested) restorer Francisco Arnau Pons-Sorolla and the hint of the great historian of Art Chueca Goitia he showed in his great works XVI Century Architecture. Encyclopedia Ars Hispaniae, Vol.XI, Madrid (1953) and History of Spanish Architecture (1964) his undisguised horror for the construction of Gothic-Renaissance cathedral in the center of the Mosque.
Rafael Castejón issued the purifying initiative of the Mosque in ABC de Sevilla September 1972 -13 -, and brought together in his writing the intense technical work was proceeding to draw from it the cathedral, should we say the two Catholic cathedrals hosting your site and the request for que the appropriate agency of the UN to declare international memorial according to the quote from Fulfilled Nieto. The champion of the purification, Castejón, shown at all times so sure the project which appears as a legitimate popular aspiration not even stop to consider the adverse factors, primarily the interests of the Catholic Church, to be those who finally end up knocking.
The canon Nieto Fulfilled was commissioned to make a success of ecclesiastical objections effectively maneuvering to make them succeed. The decisive factor was his achievement to involve the ICOMOS directly by persuading the president of the Spanish section Gabriel Alomar Esteve he organized a meeting in Cordoba, knowledgeable that belonged to famed urbanist current orthodoxy stricter conservation within the panorama of the restorers of monuments, supporter of the understanding of the sense of unity of the same derived from the sum of the different actions carried along history, the meaning of persistence as a distinct value of the historic city which is expressed both in its plot and in its buildings and the need to intervene with current architectural concepts to flee the "pastiche and anachronism", he wrote in the same article Architecture.
Surely it was this intervention that garnered louder counterweight on the pan of the balance of the maintenance of the monument as it. From that meeting came, for, the ultimate decision. And it is likely that El Caudillo, Castejón or blamed but ultimately the failure by refusing to accept foreign money, not reach or find out your result, if he had ever really been interested as the Marquis of Lozoya said, and the Mosque of Cordoba continued probably forever with cathedral squatter embedded in its center.
From my point of view and from the current canons of rationality restorative, sometimes radical, that prevent the napkin or even elimination of cascarria churrigueresca of Gothic churches, who responded strongly and the recent restoration of Roman bridge over the Guadalquivir, the decision was correct. That does not mean that from time to time not assault me but joyful illusion of power illegitimate seeing spurious additions purified one of the most important monuments in the world and we are lucky to retain, though seriously maimed, in this city. And, above all, disenchanted definitely enjoying it, secularized, become an amazing display of human constructive genius, teaching the mere display of a historical phenomenon and artistic-cultural legal and liberally detached from the occasional religious products that could, grade or force, have inspired.
Moreover this illusion is compounded by the thought that the occurrence of the extraction of the cathedral, still active for the worship of a part fortunately growing minority of the local population, not have been possible the outright theft that the Catholic Church, with malice aforethought, treachery, the aggravating silence sigilosidad and invaluable local authorities, regional and state on the left coward, inmatriculando recently perpetrated in his name, taking advantage of a clearly unconstitutional law (assimilated to church because public officials) and made to your exact measurement when ruled by a right-wing party, of what used to be a public good of Cordoba usufructuantes of that adjective from the days when a Castilian king, conveniently considered holy that that organization, confiscated it in the thirteenth century to usufructuantes of another religion and who were forced into exile. Is, because of aggiornamiento the same process. Entonces a los dueños colectivos “heathen” the building will be physically expelled and proposed collective ownership of another group, that of the Catholic clergy administered. Today the neopaganos begin to be mostly exiles us the same property by means more Sibylline, more shysters. Officials, bundles, tricky laws, politicians sold the malnacidos…