"Towering seventeen stories tall when the rest of the world could barely manage a second floor, and spread across the mountainside, the Symposium perched in the clouds like an eagle watching the petty skittering insects below." Artur McEndin, A Brief History of the Symposium
Purpose / Function
The Symposium was built as a place to exchange ideas and theories about magic with magi from across the world. The original main amphitheatre reflects this, surrounded by lodgings to retire to when the day's debating is over. Over time, as magi brought their apprentices with them to expose them to new ideas, the Symposium shifted to serving as a school to give magi higher education in their abilities or chosen fields of study.
The main hall and amphitheatre have remained mostly unchanged since their construction, but extensions have been built out around them. The era of building is usually clear from the architecture, and as one starts from the outside and moves in the layers of history visibly peel back. Most of the additions and alterations exist to accommodate the increased number of students that pass through, though there have been some attempts at modernisation.
The Symposiasts original design found at the centre of the complex heavily features columns and wide open spaces to allow for the flow of conversation. It is built of heavy white crystalline stone and reinforced silver. The shapes tend towards straight lines and edges, with carved friezes upon the ceilings. After the death of the original Symposiasts, the meaning of many of these works of art have been lost. As the layers move outwards, the styles change - usually there is some effort to blend with the previous style whilst bringing a new twist, but there are a few jarring jumps. The white crystal floors of the inner hall give way to smooth white marble, which gives way to black marble, which in turn is followed by obsidian. The silver supports become gold, then bronze, then steel.