From the novel based on his life experiences, “Shantaram” by Gregory David Roberts:
“But its most sublime beauty, it seemed to me, was found in the cathedral interiors. There, the limitations of function met the ambitions of art, as the timetable and the timeless commanded equal respect.”
Roberts was describing his observations of the Victoria Terminus train station in what was then known as Bombay, India.
Those of you who follow my musings in articles, TCAA catalogs, and classes, etc., will know that I am constantly exploring the relationship between function and art. We could say the same thing about a saddle…we are somewhat confined by the function of a saddle because its ‘timetable’ has to work or it is simply not usable. But the ‘timelessness’ is the artistic, aesthetic aspect of the work that is woven in a seamless fashion with the usable aspects of the saddle. We tend to separate the two in our day and age. I would make the case that they are inextricably tied together in all great work. They command ‘equal respect’.
By the way, I would recommend this book to all who appreciate a thought-filled, well written, high adventure story. Thanks to my acquaintance Kiril Sokoloff for the gift of this book.