Colossal columns and slabs of marble, each piece as complex and absorbing as nature itself. The dark mahogany furniture, doors and flooring are as imposing to the eye as they are reassuring to the touch. Every element in this time capsule appears to have been forthrightly built to outlast time. How, is not clear.
The Masonic Temple at the Andaz Liverpool Street Hotel in London is an impossible statement against the inevitable. Its chiselled wisdom betrays ambition, extravagance and opulence, despite an attempt to conceal them under austere colours and low lighting.
Order, truth, trust and wisdom are also conceptualised, however, the room fails to testify to the order’s belief that in passing, man has and is what he did, experienced and offered. Nothing else.
It clings onto material existence as if fearing to lose or let go of its richness and sensory pleasures.
From the ground floor, an icy marble staircase leads to the antechamber of the Masonic Temple. The soft cushioning of the carpet and the vast white marble veranda impress, as a walk among clouds would, on a path to a castle in the sky.
Why ostentatiously decorate this room with heavy and persisting materials if it is housed inside a building structurally weaker in comparison?
I couldn’t help imagining the crumbling building, burying with it the heavily clad room. A castle in the sky.
The antechamber plays intriguingly with harmonic proportions and base materials. The heavy doors to the temple pivot, light as feathers, on an unseen, weighted mechanism. They are the only reference to fluidity I could find and the only aspect of the masonic expertise I could experience in the time we were given to visit the location.
I’m not clued up enough to say this post is anything other than personal experience. I can share however my impressions and a few more pics at: https://www.flickr.com/amavergara/ Including one of the second grand chair presiding the room.
If you know of reading that would help in finding out more about the location please do feel free to share in the comments.
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