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Perot Museum in Victory Park in Dallas Texas, completed in 2012. The city fragments as the visitor enters, with tree canopies and free form gardens bringing him back to nature. From this atrium the visitor enters the main building.
The main building is very similar to other Morphosis projects, a rectangular chunk with horizontal texture and long slivers of sparse windows. The stony veneer advertizes the museum's emphasis of nature, and the flowy curvature of stone hearkens to the geographical qualities of the region.
The visitor proceeds straight to the top and overlooks to city for a final reminder of what the built environment looks like, and then he delves down into the exhibits of nature that proceeded it.
Therme Vals hotel. Down-slope from the original 1960s hotel, the roof of the spa serves as a grass lawn and swimming pool for the guests. This takes on a park atmosphere as the plantings are natural but arranged in rectangular synthetic forms.
Thin local quarzite stones make up the unique walls of the spa. They are stacked in a way that hints at natural geology and push the building back from dominating the site's beautiful scenery. The building has 15 units arranged on a grid, 5 meters tall and related to each other by cantilevered roofs.
Thin window reveals in the roof relate to the thin stone blocks, but they also outline the exterior form and give a heavy, cave-like feel inside. These high-contrast striations in the incoming light emphasize the building material's linear nature. The long horizontal lines emphasize the peaceful horizon of still water.
Circulation of the site is carefully considered within the straight paths. A procession of sensory stimulants suggest a timeless experience, ancient benefits to bathing. Views are allowed or blocked in careful consideration of this sensory experience. The most primal feelings are evoked as all nature is technologically stripped away to just rock, water, and light. Temperature also varies along these procession paths.
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Principal among all well known and renowned Roman architects, artistic workers or builders: Marcus Vitruvius Pollio - Ten books of architecture and artistic construction.
A key and introduction to all mathematic and mechanical art, and of all astute attempts or speculations of artistic works. Diligently and properly written for the population, from such high understanding and correct ground, with a full and certain foundation of all laudable art. So that every avid student of art may thus be instructed in architecture and artistic construction, and may easily learn and grasp a correct understanding of the mathematics and mechanical arts involved in architecture. All this adorned and declared with beautiful artistic figures and antiquities and with special commentary for a better understanding.
For the first time translated and printed in German, for the advantageous benefit of all artistic handiwork, workmen, builders, vehicle and civil designers, well diggers, carpenters, painters, sculptures, goldsmiths, carpenters, and all those who use artistic titles and tools.
View original book, by Uni Heidelberg
English translation pp.7-10
Through D. Gualtherium H. Rivium Medical & Mathematician
First to transfer this into the German language, as it is otherwise would not be understood with the other sources except through considerable effort.
Printed in Nürnberg: Johan Petreius, 1548
Printed in the same year and afterward with regal support of the king.
Scholarly, foresighted, and wise gentlemen, mayors and counselors, the city of Nuremburg, my authoritative and favored gentlemen.
Scholarly, foresighted, and wise gentlemen, E.F.E.W., modest art and wisdom comes despite all dout. With such great diligence the ancients, our forefathers, founded and brought forth a high understanding of all art and meaningful inventions, which is to our temporal welfare and necessary for our physical preservation. And they took such care to freely and thoughtfully leave behind their helpful and useful inventions for us, their descendants.
These arts and various meaningful inventions remain as a leading testimony if considered in common and equally well, and they allow everyone some useful and advantageous opportunity for design. But we find that one art has a special purpose or higher goal than the others, giving it special consideration.
Quite a few helpful arts and meaningful inventions have risen to prominence, pleasing the eye and remaining until now in constant need. They have been very important in promoting friendlier, more pleasant, and greater social human interaction, or improving a city’s status and nature, and to get this with ease.
The greater portion is also honored and each are disassociated from that fruitful and useful half that they may daily bring, and then further and more considerably alone on account that they are quite fun and entertaining, deceptively charming and agreeable. And so we believe that each art is to be considered its own separate specialty.
Thus we pick for ourselves all art and meaningful inventions- not just what the ancients our forefathers would have goodwillingly shared, but also all that is modern and founded and produced day by day. With diligence we venture and attempt this discretionary partitioning or distinction, revivals, and requests. We find that there is no art that will bring to those who want or encounter it such great daily use and unbelievable advantage, such learning, practice, and need, as the excellent art of Architecture, which is justly seen as the most respectable, useful, crucial and most loved of all.
Yet this area is not commonly understood as having a need for architecture. According to the opinion and teaching of ancient and highly considered Vitruvian architecture, some work of stonemasons, bricklayers, etc. should be respectively considered as arts through architecture. Diligent and experienced architects use this work and help as a handy instrument or tool. If these other artistic creations, judiciaries, or benefits are equally precious and from good sturdy ground, a good understanding of the work, and through advanced beginnings, and if experienced through architecture, they may thereby reveal the fundamental issues of their own work. They may serve to complete all our temporal and physical endeavors, our important
wants and needs, achieving them through an intelligent and good understanding of the ordering and building of the work.
There was also the thought and opinion held as true by ancient heathen philosophies regarding the diligent development of natural things, that human sexes began to live in dwellings and supposedly united and came together because of the most basic necessities of water or fire. We should be very careful that the art of architecture be the very first approach, beginning with this union of the first humans in a pleasant dwelling. Therefore we consider the needs and uses of the dwelling.
For whoever follows this admirable pursuit may not inadequately study any other art or clever invention. Even the first attempted and newly developed architecture gave us all kinds of results, not just screening and protecting us from foul weather, hail frost, wind, cold and rain, but also protecting us from various dangerous and malicious people, contrary and ferocious animals, and so forth. It gave protection, shelter, and shade from many dangers and calamities. It also preserved life and limb in various good times and men depended on it for help, because of their inherent stupidity, and the ancients used it to climb up and to better themselves.
Today we can still see that only these arts and various meaningful inventions are the most important and necessary means for receiving, establishing, and reaping in a peaceful, livable civilization of dwellings. We couldn’t use or even consider any other way because this art is inspired and given to us by the Lord God out of privileged approval, fatherly will and providence, to be useful to man as a shield and weapon.
We consider the means through which our human body prolongs its health and gains human strength to be the first and most important and highest expertise of our time. It becomes clear that the same greater portion began with this art. For still to be seen today are mighty and glorious constructs of antiquity, built with some bodily power and remarkable, unbelievable expense. For visual examples there are crumbling bath houses, gymnasiums, observatories, and theaters. The great aqueducts, or culverts, in particular stand as testimony to how various arts and forms can be wonderfully finalized and conquered through this art, and not only for bodily preservation and enhancement but also for thousands of other uses.
Today we have museums, recognizing that nothing on earth has flowered that was not from this art, including the human body, advancement, trade, like fruitful branches and twigs springing out of a cut root. This art has brought us important tools for basic work, such as agricultural equipment through which we harvest everything, along with all other instruments and vehicles of labor. They dig wells for sources of water, not only for one place but to be sent to other places through the depths of the earth to flow through the high mountain, digging through hard veins of stone, evening out the height and flatness and leading through great lengths and in great heights. They contain and dam up rivers, ponds, and seas. They drain marshes and intentionally divert strong current of water to lead into cities as they please, employing various methods. Ships are built as all the oceans can be traversed using ships, and the shores must therefore be provided with ports and shipyards. Bridges must be built over large and small rivers along with royal mills and various buildings having to do with water.
Whatever the purpose of the useful and noteworthy artistic work, each will be brought to completion with a fundamental and correct understanding of the art
Part of the reason we establish holy buildings and great construction is for the preservation of the Christian religion, including churches, temples, holy houses, and whatever the local city policy and regiment concerns, holy palaces of judgment and city halls, armories, treasuries, hospitals, royal and kingly courts, and common and exclusive city dwellings. They are constructed with such great magnificence and glory, all founded by well ordered policies.
The most important construction, namely the city’s fortifications, castles, and keep, were also founded through this art, as well as city walls, city ports, gates, graveyards, fortresses, bastions, garrisons, posts, etc. all with their advantageous defenses. They were built with power and considerable effort for a freer and more secure city life, for business and trade, and for the needs of all man-made machinery. Their nature is unrivaled because of the artistic inventions of architecture, along with artillery hoists, vehicles, and many thousand, countless similar mechanical instruments, all of which have their origins in architecture. They would not remain if robbed of their universal as well as their individual foundation.
In order to humbly convince with true arguments and solid logic that this art of architecture together with all its parts is the most useful, necessary, and therefore the most beloved and enjoyable of all artistic and meaningful inventions, the principle through which every well ordered policy and city regiment at any point in time of peace or war may be noted as having affluence and virtue, as staying firm and full of security, calm, frugality, and having the highest expertise of common needs- that you may become even more modestly convinced with all the vast histories and particularly from the excellent examples from Archimedes and through other famous artistic architects-
To bring this to a fair conclusion, that this excellent art of architecture, and all that has been invented, brought forth, and developed, not only out of a high understanding, various experiences, meaningful attempts, and some practice, but also reinforced with writing, from that which they shared to us their descendants despite all doubt, which has been to such significant good and high merit for our common use, and is worthy of much praise and approval-
And that you may especially understand in this regard and give proper holy credit to all those who have been involved in the writings of architecture and passed on and shared their understandings, who have written about the oldest, highest esteemed, and most famous architect Vitruvius, and to pass on this same book which describes architecture with the utmost diligence and in a reasonable and handy order, that the entire art with all its parts may be laid out in a short summary, immaculately like looking at a mirror, with all arts and not as a costly and precious treasure, but as a correct, dependable foundation and all-encompassing groundwork for all the arts that go with architecture, to be highly received-
And as this issue was until now understood by many excellent, educated, and well known people of certain nations, so this book of Vitruvius is shared in the native, foreign and alien language, for their particular advantage and to direct their work and meaningful inventions, as well as their wisdom and scientific methods, though we speak German-
Therefore, these days this glorious artistic book of Vitruvius has been transferred to other foreign nations into various language, chiefly into Italian and then into Spanish and then the French language.
But until now, like I said, save only for the foreign-speaking German readers who appreciated art, we have remained unacquainted, ignorant, or hidden from the greater portion because of a lack of translation or distribution of these glorious books, this precious treasure.
However today all art and meaningful inventions will be brought higher day by bay from this blessed, excellent, indebted German nation. And not only will all other nations consult us, but we may far outdo them with high reason and common and useful practice in all necessary labor and effort.
I have a great desire and good intention to be of common service, foremost for the meaningful art of math, as it relates to architecture, to serve as an occupation. I feel pleased to take upon myself this concentrated effort to share diverse architectural books of the highest quality to the best of my ability, and to transfer all artistic things into a common and plain German language using the press.
But whilst these books of Vitruvius describe and order with such great understanding and splendid prescience the right ability required for artistic and orderly construction, it also describes all other arts which may require mathematical art and mechanical inventions. It is a short summary, developed and composed for this purpose, that the diligent reader might explore the faithful instruction of these books.
These artistic things are somewhat hazy and difficult, not entirely understandable. This includes many things, but to give a particular example, the fortified construction and advanced machinery needed for weapons in Vitruvius’ time, as founded by the principle of architecture.
It includes many other things that have been made and developed as needed, which to the German reader are of utmost importance yet strange and unknown. They are barely touched upon in our German literature or pursued from a solid foundation. I am therefore at this time concerned about many professions related to mine, such as the distinguished art of medicine, that these professions look to certain practices and works from the superb examples of other excellent artists, including: Luca Pacioli, Caesaris Caesarini, Benadicti Iourj, Boni Mauri, Leonis Baptistae, Guilielmi Philandri, Sebastiano Serlio, Patri Nonij, Orontij Finei, Niccolo Tartaglia, and many others whose literature about architecture and closely related arts proved crucial in providing true precepts for my undertaking.
Their writings in foreign languages help lay out and declare these books of Vitruvius with special visual figures and with German commentary, and further involve related mathematical art and mechanical inventions and investigations, indeed all arts, so that those who understand and practice these arts might clearly and easily have the teachings and instruction of Vitruvius.
Those who need other useful and understandable instruction might achieve just what they need, as such short and varied arts shared and related to architecture may not have advanced. May all despite my weakness of person be spared work and pain through these efforts, and may I prove helpful and useful for common practices. And with the sharing of these ten books and with my diligent artistic expertise, I am furthermore moved and anxious that
the Viruvian architecture and ordered figures and commentary or design in these ten books deal with the most useful and advantageous architecture, related mathematical art, meaningful mechanical inventions, and various useful practices. May these special books share the unpracticed and untaught reader the very best, clearest, and strongest foundation and introduction with these printed books of Vitruvius, and be shared with good will.
As the wise and versatile architect Vitruvius found it fit to give first attention in his esteemed books and writings to the almighty Caeser Julius, and then to Augustus, as an excellent and holy gift and to extend his gratitude, then so should all who have received so much dedicate under both these Roman Caesers’ holy names and hold up the book for publication with the praise they deserve. We should do this for those who transferred these holy books into some foreign languages and also documented and traded the arts related to architecture and so so still to this day.
We should further commend the opinions and high and great views of the mighty potentates with their applicable efforts and literary works, who have gracefully given aid for all diligent artistic expression to common use, as a strong protection and mighty shield. I do not hesitate to follow the auspicious examples of certain educated, sensible, visionary, and wise gentlemen, including E.F.E.W, who richly adorn and honor all famous and laudable arts with modest experience and with various holy gifts of God. They are the highest patrons, soft and fatherly possessors, providers, and protectors of all famous laudable arts, to translate and order commentary on Vitruvian architecture and give other important books that articulately deal with architecture related arts. Under the holy and well known name E.F.E.W. I have spread about and published for the many advantages and uses of all art enthusiasts.
For while E.F.E.W has a particularly friendly disposition and good intentions, he also strives to serve and stand for any common need and expertise of any client. E.F.E.W furthermore modestly displays an angelic, joyful and peaceful rule and gives rightly ordered Christian policies. And thus from all principles brings all artistic virtue, famous artistic and laudable things, to make any place a place of peace, and to make any and everyone of good report, so that there may be few injuries.
I don't doubt that it will fall on me to utilize E.F.E.W.'s effort through my literary work. I truly hope that all art enthusiasts will find this work under E.F.E.W.'s high reputation and glorious name pleasing and agreeable. As a volunteer, I will likewise greatly expend and let up no diligence to this end, that these and similar endeavors may be advantageous and helpful to all art-enthusiasts and common use. I will by day bring my highest power to goodwillingly honor and please E.F.E.W.
E.F.E.W. honors to God's holy name and the fatherland's common use and glory, and that is why the almighty God of all authoritative understanding and wisdom mandates E.F.E.W His shield and protection, the rule, patronage, and intervention.
Date in Wüzburg: 16. Feb. 1548.
Gualtherus H. Riuius Medicus & Mathematicus & c.
© This translation coyprighted Benjamin Blankenbehler
Continue to English translation pp.7-10
|Graphical perspective portrays depth and space correctly in art.|
There are many strategies for making objects in a drawing look close or far away. Big objects tend to be closer. Early artists used overlapping to suggest one object was closer than another. Closer objects also tend to have more tonal contrast than objects far away and less bright colors because of atmospheric perspective. Finally, objects that are lower down are often closer because of gravity.
But these things alone don't make a convincing drawing. We must consider how objects look from certain viewing positions. Using geometrical rules we can show objects as they are naturally seen.
First thing to understand is that the size an object is related to its distance.
As you get farther away from telephone poles, they get smaller and smaller. They disappear along a horizontal line in the distance. Things get smaller toward this line. This is called the horizon line and it is at the viewer's eye level.
To make things easier we only need to look at three directions toward which objects get smaller in the distance. An object vanishes toward some point on the left, some point on the right, and some point either up or down.
We all know a cube has rectangular sides. But viewed naturally the sides vanish toward a point at each three directions. This is called 3-point perspective. Two of these vanishing points are on the horizon line, on the left and on the right side of the viewer.
Two-point perspective is basically the same as three-point perspective except the up or down vanishing direction is ignored and vertical lines are used.
People often think of a line as a mark on a piece of paper, but this is incorrect. It will be much easier if you think of a line only as a measure of distance. To find vanishing points we only use straight lines. Any part of the object that gets smaller in that particular direction converges along straight lines toward that single vanishing point.
First, find the vanishing points. This is determined by the object's size and distance from the viewer. To draw a perfect cube we make use of measuring points. Measuring points on the horizon line, closer to the center, guide the rate of vanishing for all directions.
Or if you are viewing a scene like a building you can guess based on angles of lines where the vanishing points are. Look for things that are in alignment, such as stones in a building, how they all converge toward the same vanishing points.
This is not only true for a single object such as a building, but for groups of objects that align with each other.
But what about multiple objects that aren't in alignment?
If you take one of those vanishing points and put it very very far to the left or right you get one-point perspective.
This is because when you move the vanishing point outward the other vanishing point moves inward, all the way until it is at the center directly in front of you. And the third vanishing point moves out as well until you have vertical lines. Whenever you start moving vanishing points around all the other vanishing points move around too. It is important to understand what happens to the object when you do this.
If you move all the vanishing points out, this makes it look like you are far away from the object and looking at it zooming in. But if you move all the vanishing points inward this looks like you are close up to the object and looking at it with a fish-eye lens.
If you move both vanishing points in the same direction the object will turn.
In other words, the vanishing point of a turning object will slow down as it gets closer to the object. Turning is the most basic movement an object makes to change vanishing points.
Twisting is pretty simple. It is pretty much the same thing as if you are twisting your head and the object is staying stationary. The vanishing point, horizon line, and everything else simply twists with you.
The only complication is if the object that twists is not directly in front of you. Because then the object looks like it is turning as well. So you got to move the perspective points using the same rule for turning objects.
When something tips forward or backward the horizon line moves slightly up or down with it. The vanishing points move out and the upper vanishing point moves down. Unless the object is perfectly in the center you've got to consider some twist and turn as well.
Alright, so we know how moving objects changes the vanishing points and horizon line. Let's take a look at the object itself. We have the overall shape but how do we determine parts and pieces of the object itself, the bricks, windows, and doors of the building?
We can find the center of an object's face using simple diagonal lines.
Do this to break up the object into quadrants, then subdivide the quadrants, until you have a grid of spaces. Simply measure proportions on this grid to figure out where all the pieces of the object go.
Subdividing also helps us figure out how to double a length of space. For example, if you want to draw horizontal wood beams along a railroad track. Take a line from the diagonal to the middle of the side of the plane and continue it on.
This is all well and good for straight lengths, but what about curvy objects? Well that's where things get more complex. Linear perspective only deals with straight lines. So curves require some guesswork. This is a limitation that makes some of the best computer rendering software do some hard calculations.
First, draw a rectangle around the circle or curve. The edges of that circle must meet the square at the midway points. There is a tenancy to tilt the circle incorrectly if you don't consider these midway points.
To make the curve more accurate subdivide the square. Mark points where the curve intersects these subdividing lines and keep track of these points as you draw the same square in perspective.
There are several methods of subdividing the rectangle that will make this easier.
1 out of 5 stars
|The entry-level Nikon D5000 is a low cost SLR that produces impressive photos. The most outstanding feature is the positionable LCD display. It rotates and swirls to enable difficult shots from positions that would otherwise make a preview impossible. The camera runs smoothly and quietly with a more streamlined method of producing image files.|
As of 2009 the D5000 camera was reportedly only compatible with Nikkor AF-S, Sigma HSM, and Tamron NII lenses because it requires lenses have built-in focusing motors. But even after getting the correct lenses we still experienced big problems.
Soon after purchasing the camera its aperture control failed. Though this occurred during the warranty time period, Nikon refused to apply the warranty agreement and repair the defect free of charge, in our opinion. Nikon claimed the repair did not fall under the warranty agreement. It was not a difficult repair but it took time and effort to ship and arrange. And this wasn't the only failure of the camera.
Soon after this, the auto-focus failed to operate correctly on any lens. Nikon boasts 11 auto-focus points but they suddenly became useless as each photo must be focused manually. This disturbing break-down in the camera is not mentioned in photography magazines, but multiple users complain about focus issues. And as I said, Nikon charged us for the aperture repair even though it was still in the warranty time period.
The large CMOS censor means great photo creation. The image is large, the quality is impressive, and the price is tempting. However Nikon's behavior is not what we expected from such a big company. All these features don't help when the product breaks and the company refuses to apply the warranty agreement, in our opinion. There have been great advances in cheaper cameras that have brought them close to the quality of an SLR, so that might be a better option. And for any foray into advanced SLR photography we recommend avoiding Nikon.
Go with Canon.
Henry Wotton (1568 - 1639) did not intend The Elements of Architecture to be just another philosophical treatise for the architecture student. As the first Englishman to produce a serious work on the subject of architecture, Henry Wotton found himself in a unique and advantageous position to spread it beyond architects as he himself had not been trained as an architect.
During his time in Florence, Transylvania, Poland, Germany, Rome, and later as an ambassador to the Venician Republic from 1604 to 1653, Wotton realized the incomparable advantage of including architecture in the common person's day to day lifestyle. He sought to educate the lay English public with a summary and categorization of true architecture principles. He wrote as a critic.
The Elements of Architecture was a short, easy book that might be found in any person's sitting room. It expressed a new enthusiasm for the art of architecture in popular society.
Get Elements of Architecture by Henry Wotton
Wotton thus gave power to common man, as in every great step forward in human technology from the printing press to the personal computer, not only by education of timeless principles but also through practical applications and recommendations for the English context. Thus began Neo-Classicism.
The writings of Wotton revered Vitruvius and the principles he laid out yet didn't hold them as the unbending truth. He rejected Vitruvius' reverence for the circle as the foundation of architectural form, as natural forms seemed to him to pragmatically spring from more useful origins. Wotton cared about function and less about prescribed form derived from rigid proportional principles. Indeed, Wotton totally changed the Vitruvian criteria of form, dismissing proportional order and composition.
This is expressed in Wotton's early assertion that “every part is to be determined by its use.” This swing toward utilitarianism and lead to Louis Sullivan to say “form follows function.” Eventually the emphasis on function would be so overplayed that modernists would be making up useless functions just for the sake of abolishing form. A healthy relationship of form and function would need to be sought out.
It is important to realize that it was under these conditions that classical Italian architecture began to prevail in England. The English society became Puritan under King James I, yet values were at the same time shifting away from puritan conservative principles. Wotton himself was far removed from dignity. He was famously involved in spying scandals and in thwarting assassination attempts, he was often heavily in debt, and his reputation was besmirched as a dishonest diplomatist for the king. He was hardly the image of a pure soul. Oscar Wilde's character named Henry Wotton in The Picture of Dorian Grey was a Hedonist, superciliously living by the mantra that only beauty and pleasure are worth pursuing.
This book's influence on England is profound. Wotton's new value for utility, scientific proof, and empirical experience came concurrently with the scientific advances of Francis Bacon. If the great realm of architecture were to be brought down to the every-man's level, it would certainly need to lose the mystery, the mystic in people's minds. It deals less with the spheres of the universe and more with the soil conditions prudent for a single-family home. Beauty didn't come from the names of great artists or styles, but from logical solutions to every day issues.
As Oscar Wilde wryly noted, however, this often gets taken too far. It could lead to loose morals, an over-emphasis on worldly pleasures, dehumanization, and self-defeating close-mindedness. The endeavors of the British Empire were great, and it is safe to say England wasn't always humanely-minded. The Italian villa became a popular style following Wotton's new architecture, but the villa in Wilde's story which started out as a pleasure palace ended as a prison.
With this new ability given to the larger populace to control their environment, with time-tested principles but also with pragmatic flexibility and in conjunction with civic and other scholarly studies, England quickly advanced.
In my own short experience, I have seen a unique enthusiasm for architecture in England. A map of total visits to my architecture website which documents many projects around the world reaveals two cities that are by far the most interested in architecture: London, and not far behind it, New York City.
The practice of writing about architecture for the common person continued throughout Europe and continued on in the Americas, a practice that has advanced architecture in ways that are not fully appreciated.
Excerpt from Introduction to The Elements of Architecture by Henry Wotton
Now Available here!