Dirk de Vries
The establishment of a chair in the History of Building aims to contribute to a broadening and elaborating of this relatively new subject. Apart from several PhD students who are conducting research on their own, external funding has made it possible to establish two paid research positions. Contractual appointments with grants are being considered. The origins and the application of building materials in the 19th and 20th centuries will be traced from written sources, while also studying old construction specifications. History graduates, graduates of Dutch language and culture and art historians who are interested in these subjects can make their interest known to the Professor.
Professor Dirk J. de Vries has been appointed Professor for two days a week in the History of Building in Leiden, during the other three days he works as a coordinator of Building History at the National Division for the Preservation of Monuments and Historical Buildings in Zeist. He had a technical education (MTS Mechanical Engineering and HTS Architecture in Zwolle) and studied History of Art (Utrecht University). His dissertation: ‘Building in the Middle Ages. Urban Architecture in the former area of Over- and Nedersticht’ (1994) is, however, based predominantly on archive research. He learned to apply the subject of Building History by studying the preservation of historic monuments as practised by such eminent predecessors as H. Janse, G. Berends and R. Meischke. The Vries is editor-in-chief of the KNOB Bulletin (Royal Netherlands Archaeological Federation), vice-chairman of the Arbeitskreis für Hausforschung, board member and fellow-founder of the Society for Building History in the Netherlands.