The online portfolio and whimsical ramblings of Robert James Page


The last two or three weeks have been a blur. This year is turning out to be even more demanding than the last and without God's unexplainable peace, which has been incredible, I'd be a total wreck. Thursday was my first hand in for the semester, and Friday followed with a pretty dismal set of results, but I look forward to a chance to right myself again next quarter.

Submission was completely hand draw, so I have no pictures to post of the project, although I'm not sure that I would either way, since the end results were rather disappointing..

Looking back on the project though, I must say I quite enjoyed it. I've learned a fair deal about how I respond to pressure (not very well) and been directed to do some pretty interesting research work.

The project was a Buddhist retreat for Port St. Johns, a small sea side town on the Wild Coast in the Eastern Cape. My main precedent study was of a retreat in Ixopo, an hour or so's drive from Durban. It's a really beautiful place that perfectly embodies the opening paragraph of Alan Paton's Cry the Beloved Country:

There is a lovely road that runs from Ixopo into the hills. These hills are grass covered and beyond any singing of it.

I took a few photos when we visited it about a month ago. There's certainly nothing architecturally outstanding about the place, but it has some serious vibe, and I found it an incredible example of just how strong a sense spirit or identity a certain place can have.

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