Monday, February 27, 2012

(RR7)Humayun's Tomb: the Prototype for the Taj Mahal

Humayun's Tomb was built by the Persian architect, Mirak Mirza Ghiyas for the principal wife of Humayun.  The similarities in Humayun's Tomb, not only in it's use, but directly in contrast to the architecture of the overall space is very similar to the Taj Mahal, because it is it's prototype.  Red sandstone, vast garden's divided by axis', and the buildings foundations on the Yamuna River are only a few similarities of their outward appearances.  They both are massive tombs built around loved ones with chambers within chambers on it's interiors and exteriors.  Both tombs are directly below the domes that stretch toward the sky.  Humayun's Tomb may be the inspiration for the Taj Mahal, but the embellishing on the inside of the Taj Mahal scream rendition.  The Taj Mahal is a marble and red sandstone building with over forty different types of precious gems and stones with gold trimmings and much more. One aspect the Taj Mahal has that outdoes Humauyn's Tomb is the emotional components placed in the space with the "four gardens."  The labor for the Taj Mahal ("the Illumined Tomb") was fifteen years with twenty-thousand workers.  The tomb was a symbol of Shah Jahan's love and respect for his late wife and celebrations were marked on the anniversary of her death. 

DA 2: Map

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

US: The Immortality of Circles, Groves, and Stacks

Architecture is the art of taking pieces of shapes, concepts, ideas and creating an environment and atmosphere suitable for interaction.  However, until I was in this class I hadn’t wondered where architecture first originated.  Its foundation was based on the ancient identification of circles, groves, and stacks.  Without the basic principles of circles, groves, and stacks architecture would not be as it is today, because it evolved from the three principles.
Circles are inviting and stimulating for social gatherings, groves are vertical tree like replicas that we see in columns, and stacks stand out carving imprints in structures like stairs or windows.  These ancient concepts were not random, but instead they were manipulations of what they saw from nature.  The circle is a representation of the sun and moon, while groves were a vertical replica of trees or people, and stacks were the mountains that stretched across their horizon.  Evidence of circles was uncovered at Stonehenge, but as time progressed so did humans brain capabilities. 
Combining groves and stacks was the gateway to temples and palaces.  As general knowledge, we associate temples with a vast focal point held up by stacks.  The difference is that now they began to imagine and design.  There are a handful of different types of columns, but the most basic is the Tuscan.  The Tuscan being the original column would be considered the prototype where as a Doric, Ionic, or Corinthian would be an archetype and a combination of two or more of the different columns would be considered a hybrid. 
            Order became relative when they began to get crafty with their buildings.  The Greeks began to create buildings, like the Megaron, which had certain spaces created with a purpose/order in mind.  The establishment of rooms was created with the spaces of porch, court, and hearth.  Sound familiar? The porch was for greetings before you enter the space, the court was for social gatherings, like a living room, and the hearth was a room with a purpose, like a bathroom.  Acropolis/Athens is a great example of how buildings began to have purposes.  Acropolis/Athens is not just one building, but also a vast amount of them creating architecture through landscape.  Circles, groves, stacks, prototypes, archetypes, hybrids, porches, courts, and hearths are all present in Acropolis/Athens and all of the structural principles originated from circles groves and stacks. 
As Acropolis/Athens brought about the concept of circles in it’s city flamboyance shifted from Acropolis/Athens to Rome.  Rome began to build vast buildings, structurally similar, but they took the time out to decorate the enormous spaces, which hadn’t really been important before.  Rome wanted a change and for everyone to know about their great city and it’s advancements.  They gave names to everything; for example, road/streets, bath, market, amphitheatre, and coliseum are among the few that thrived in this city.  They gave meaning to the city as a whole.  It’s amazing how nature created such an evolution in architecture and as long as we associate with the foundation of circles, groves, and stacks they will continue to be immortal.  

Monday, February 13, 2012

RR 5: (Saint-Martin-du-Canigou: A Master of Monk Seclusion)

The Sait-Martin-du-Canigou is a monastery embedded in the mountains of southwestern France.  It's purpose is to house monks, wanderers, and anyone who sought to seek refuge in God.  Sclua, a monk, directed the building of the Saint-Martin-du-Canigou. A building built for monks by a monk, it's only logical that the building would give them the seclusion they desired for worship. Dim lighting created by the vaults contributed to the spiritual atmosphere that was intended for the building.  The monastery is relatively small and is not easily accessible with the intention of getting lost from the outside world. During a time where secular influences were arising a place to seek certainty in the midst of such an uncertain time was needed.  There are two sanctuaries stacked on top of one another with barrel vaults leading into each of the lit sanctuary isles for heavenly characteristics.  Places of worship have since evolved into the open churches we have present day.  There are still quarters where the preacher secludes him/herself to get away from the outside world just as the monks did.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Blog Post 5: Limerick

Waves, dancing to the rhythm of light,
Transforming the repetition into hills of delight,
Though your structure is much appreciated,
I have one question that I need disintegrated,
Why must your lights be so bright!?!