bless you baruch

Friday afternoon, you're just about to enter your post as Chairman of the Architects Association, and what I'm about to write you has just ripened. Outside it's a wonderful sunny day, a good reason to drop everything for a cup of coffee on the seaside, something no one in Europe can do in mid January without a threatening cloud frowning over. And that's consoling, alleviating all the anger and disappointment over the fortressed villa of the (dis)appointed Chief of Staff, the shallow house of Big Brother, and the gas prices  symbolizing our lambs' silence in face of the government's domineering every architectural initiative. 

This is the young architects' silence in fear of the Registrar, who demeans our disrespected profession, and even worse - the silence of us all regarding the meager planning fee which raises, in some, thoughts of begging at the intersections or immigrating away from the unreasonable reality whereby people study for 8 years to receive a certificate that grants nothing, since even without it you can do the same, only with less effort.

I had thought of interviewing you in honor of the occasion, hearing what you have to say to the woebegone flock that elected you for a job which, anywhere else, is considered honorable. But it doesn't really matter, and don't get angry; in a reality where anyone can promise everything and then claim it was pre-election talk - no one really cares. What matters is what you do, and I pray you succeed, as can only someone with your qualifications - an active architect and an accredited academic.

I know it isn't fair to ask you to rectify in one term all the mistakes - both many and painful - made by your predecessors. It isn't without reason that the registrar felt he could barge into an open door knowing there's nothing behind it; not for nothing that the project managers have replaced us as archbishops of the building we plan for them in humiliating surrender; nor that the most esteemed title in any planning authority is 'engineer' rather than 'architect'. But we know that in architecture 'nothing' can easily become the essence. And in this, we're all behind you.

Go out to the streets, stop all co-operation with the 'forces of evil' threatening our sovereignty: the 'professional' committees of the Registrar which only prevent the schools' ability to professionalize; the Interior Minister who interferes with the Planning and Building Bill as if it were a weekly preaching of Rabbi Ovadiah; the Prime Minister who hasn't fathomed what's written there; and the Minister of Commerce and Industry whose name nobody knows, yet we all live according to the incantations of his clerks.

Redeem all the young architects who work as slaves in order to fulfill unreasonable demands; create a reality in which an architecture school graduate knows he's an architect; take away everybody's insufferable power to tantalize, insult and control our future. Retrieve the control of the profession to the institutes of the groveling fellowship, which, by the way, should already be renamed 'organization' - we're just as good as the lawyers, accountants, and engineers from which we parted for a reason.

Do that with god's help, I promise to interview you soon after.

חזרה לגליון 84    back to issue 84