Sacred Spires

What sort of dignified establishment does this pseudo-classical building house, you ask? A bank? A municipal office? A funeral home?

The clue is in the fake cupola that has been snapped onto the commodious vinyl roof like a LEGO. It mimics a bell tower; it is topped with a spire that soars into the heavens to commune with the Lord. Yes, this roof-dominant building, with its plastic molding machine-stamped with symmetrical decorations and its hollow columns laboriously forged of urethane foam, is a church–rife with spirit, crafted with fervor.

The sacred ground on which this chantry stands has housed the relics of the blessed Virgin for over twelve thousand years. Its builders were therefore commanded to retain and protect its sacred crypt, and to orient its high altar and chapels above the hallowed realm.

Make a motorized pilgrimage to this sacred minster in Prescott, Arizona. Behold its refinement with your own eyes. Absent is the soul deep-seated within the great cathedrals of Europe; wanting is the ornate beauty inherent in the tiles of the sacred mosques of the Near East. There is no burst of light emanating from panes of stained glass that were forged by artisans who poured their souls into their craft. There is no quiet calm steeped into the chapels or the pillars or the pews. There is no scent of candles or incense; no perfume of stone or earth or must or dank, cool, undulating air; no fragrance of anything alive in this church. But there is the ambrosial stench of plastic, vinyl, and carpet chemicals–a fetor that plagues your nostrils, aggrieves your lungs, strips your eyes of moisture, and so bereaves your spirit that you feel a hollowing nausea in your gut and a wound in that part of your soul that craves nourishment from beautiful spaces.

So visit this numinous tabernacle. Climb the creaky wooden steps to the bell tower. Stand among the great sculptures and buttresses; drink in with a ravenous thirst the splendorous view of the car dealership across the street. Bring your soul to its knees with a reverence for the marble pillars, the immense vaults, and the brilliant murals that evince the boundless human capacity for creating moving works of art. Prostrate your senses and pray at the foot of the gods to the great Almighty, for the sacred spirit of the Master Masons of America is alive in this church.


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The New Tombstone, Arizona

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERARanked fifth among fastest-growing small metro areas according to its Chamber of Commerce, Prescott, AZ has a particular propensity for producing abundant and eloquent examples of Master Masonry.

In the quest to quench the arid landscape’s thirst for grotesque eyesores, the posterity of establishments that term themselves home builders blooms profusely in Prescott like the lemon-yellow blossoms of the prickly pear.

Although the population, while growing, remains low, house-building abounds in the small town. A handful of transplants from beauteous Phoenix, as well as one or two expatriots of chilly climes, retreat to custom-built “dream-homes” such as those built by Master Masons in superlative subdivisions such as The Ranch at Prescott.

Pictured above is a premium plot for sale with an exceptional view of the Bradshaw Mountains. The 823 sign stands as an indication that once this plot sells, an achievement in Master Masonry will bedeck it.

The sign, interred in the earth at the head of a somber parcel, resembles a headstone for good reason:

It marks the death of the landscape.

But death is not only an end; it is also a beginning. The faux-adobe house destined to grace this plot, loaded with amenities such as a new beige carpet that outgasses toxic chemicals that will be soaked up by the lungs and skins of two retired, hopeful, and unsuspecting overspenders, will soon tower majestically in architectural splendor.

As 2012 is the new 2011, Prescott is the new Tombstone, home to its own kind of beautiful massacre.

In the year to come, six hundred thousand grave sites will be graced by resplendent purple dream-homes built by Master Masons with the finest and most distinguished skills and taste.

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Master Masonry: Southwestern Skill

Behold this remarkable triumph in subdivision building. Begun in 1446, this ravishing neighborhood in Prescott, AZ took seven generations, fourteen thousand gallons of sweat, six hundred and twenty million square feet of blood, and three hundred and thirty thousand pints of tears to build. Men toiled day and night to erect this beauteous gem for the Medici family, those powerful and inbred patrons of the arts who commissioned the domes of buildings of comparable hideousness and insignificance such as the Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore in Florence.

What makes this beautiful street special from an artistic standpoint is its architectural integrity; its use of vinyl, plywood, and PVC; as well as its irreverent desecration of the landscape. It is no mistake that its hauntingly hollow and soulless appearance resembles an abandoned film set: its Master Masons intended it to convey a feeling of unreality; a deep resonance of the inwardly vacant, the nightmarish, and the artificial. In fact, when I shot this street in or around 2002, it was an uninhabited paragon of the rash and unnecessary building boom that, in part, precipitated the global financial crisis.

Astoundingly, only three deaths were recorded during the six-hundred-year construction of this masterpiece–a remarkable feat, given the fourteen miles of perilous scaffolding that had to be erected in order to construct this neighborhood’s breathtaking central boulevard. Not surprisingly, however, the existence of this ethereal environment resulted in the suicides of eleven people between 2008 and 2009. Prescott’s gold standard of esteemed reportage, The Daily Hurrier, noted that the neighborhood’s lack of trees and flourishing plant life, its absence of a nourishing atmosphere, its cry for depth of space, and its howl for one iota of soul, as well as its utter deficit in artistry, caused the self-destruction of the eleven unfortunate individuals. Indeed, the Master Masons of this magnum opus succeeded triumphantly in rewriting the rules of Western architecture in order to achieve this oeuvre.

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Honoring Today’s Revolution in Architecture

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Welcome to the site that celebrates the land of the free, the home of the brave new builders of mesmerizing buildings. The architecture revered on this blog is of the finest quality, crafted by artisans who nurture our need for pleasing dwellings, craftsmen who intuitively grasp every nook and cranny of the concept of aesthetics. Take a look through this catalog of symmetry and feed your soul with beauty and wonder. The Master Masons of America are qualified professionals who have studied the classics, schooled themselves in the principles of sacred geometry, and slaved for years–sometimes hundreds of years–to house our businesses and public spaces in erections of sublimity. The astounding elegance exemplified in these marvelous feats forms a canon that great builders will follow for centuries to come. These spaces have the spiritual density of a forest; they evoke the fathomless mystery of the sea. Marvel at the quality of these magnificent edifices; slaver at the stone, the brick, the wood, the craftsmanship; ogle at the time and the love that goes into the creation of these wonders of the modern world.

And share the love, dear readers. By all means, spread the gospel. Contact me if you’ve photographed an exemplary specimen. Shoot the Great Buildings of America with your camera or your cell phone, not to mention that automatic weapon that is your lacerating social criticism, and arrange to send them my way. You’ll receive a photo credit and the inestimable fanship of the masses.

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