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Joshua Mardell

Visiting Tutor

Biography

Joshua is an architectural historian with broad specialisms, mostly in British architectural history of the 19th and 20th centuries, conservation, and the historiography of British architectural history. He has taught previously at ETH Zurich, Queen Mary University of London, and led the architecture summer school of the United Studies Abroad Consortium based at Imperial College. He is deeply interested in the story of the University of York, and believes the campus architecture to be a landmark episode in the history of British post-war planning and Utopianism—he breathed a heavy sigh of relief when, at last, many of the campus buildings were listed in 2018.  

Research

I first studied the built environment during my BA in Historical Archaeology at York, which has a strong standing buildings focus. I went on to pursue an MPhil at the Martin Centre for Architectural and Urban Studies at Cambridge University, working on the plurality of approaches to post-war reconstruction followed by a network of somewhat unsung architects. I then moved to ETH Zurich to write my PhD on the Buckler dynasty of antiquarian artists and architects who were united – over three generations, across the long nineteenth century – both through family ties, as well as by their indefatigable reverence for the Gothic past.

My current research is supported by a fellowship at the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art. I am using the papers of the architectural historian, writer and campaigner Gavin Stamp (1948-2017), to examine the inimitable contribution to architectural history he made through diverse platforms, including scholarly monographs, acidic journalism, and his infective enthusiasm for architecture conveyed especially through walking tours, broadcasts and a limpid and evocative prose.

I am much involved with the statutory amenity societies, or conservation charities. I am on the events committee of the Victorian Society, and I enjoy editing the ‘Building of the Month’ feature for the Twentieth Century Society. I am one of the oral history researchers for the Society of Architectural Historians of Great Britain, interviewing prominent figures in the field (albeit on hold during the pandemic), and sit on the Society’s LGBTQIA+ panel helping to promote diversity in the discipline. I’m also co-editing a book on queer spaces and stories.

 

Grants:

  • Doctoral Research Fellowship, ETH Zurich;
  • Brian Allen Visiting Scholarship, Yale Center for British Art;
  • Research Collections Fellowship, Paul Mellon Centre.

Publications

2020

Getting into a Scrape: the Buckler Dynasty, Lincoln Cathedral and mid-Victorian Architectural Politics’, Architectural History, 64.

 The Former North Peckham Civic Centre, The Twentieth Century Society Building of the Month.

 ‘Book Review of Peter Jefferson Smith, The I’Ansons: A Dynasty of London Architects & Surveyors (2019)’, Architectural Research Quarterly, 24(3).

2019

The Tower, Christmas Common’, The Twentieth Century Society Building of the Month.

‘On how we ought to be anarchists’: Pat Crooke, John Turner, and dweller-oriented architecture’, Journal of Architecture, 42(6).

‘Cast Iron Reasons for Conservation’, RIBA Journal.

‘Patrick Crooke (1927-2018)’ (obituary), RIBA Journal.

‘Patrick Crooke’ (obituary), C20 Magazine.

2018

‘“Fidelis ad Mortem”: J. C. Buckler, an Oxford College architect’, Oxoniensia, 83. Brian Cohen Essay Prize from the Oxford Architectural and Historical Society.

2017 

‘The Buckler Topographical Collection: a dynastical reading’, British Library Online.

2016

‘Sir Andrew Derbyshire’ (obituary), C20 Magazine.

2013 

Far From the Madding Crowd: John Voelcker & Ruralism in Architecture’, AA Files, 66.

2012 

‘Learning from York’, Scroope: Cambridge Architecture Journal, 22.

 

Contact details

Dr Joshua Mardell
Visiting tutor
History of Art