( Completed: 2009)
Epistemic History of Architecture: The Long-term History of the Knowledge that has made the Great Architectural Achievments of Mankind Possible
Other involved scholars: Günther Binding (Universität zu Köln); Claudia Bührig (Deutschen Archäologischen Institut); Ulrike Fauerbach (Deutschen Archäologischen Institut); Margaret Haines; Markus Hilgert (Universität Jena); Dagmar Holste (Bibliotheca Hertziana); Elisabeth Kieven (Bibliotheca Hertziana); Dietmar Kurapkat (Technische Universität Berlin); Torsten Meyer; Jens Niebaum (Bibliotheca Hertziana); Rosel Pientka-Hinz (Philipps-Universität Marburg); Hermann Schlimme (Bibliotheca Hertziana)
Cooperation Partners: Bibliotheca Hertziana - Max PLanck Institute for Art History
The final publication comprises three major sections. In the first section, the theoretical and methodological framework is presented, which focuses—for the first time—on knowledge as a decisive resource for the history of architectural development.
The second section comprises the main contributions and opens with a basic review of the Neolithic era in South-West Asia. Others are devoted to ancient Mesopotamia: a basic overview is complemented by special contributions dealing with cuneiform sources on architecture, architectural drawings and the building trade in the older Babylonian period. A special contribution on Egypt is followed by two basic surveys on Greece and Ancient Rome, together with an in-depth study of visual refinements in canonical architecture. Further basic reviews cover the Middle Ages in Northern Europe and the early modern period. Related specials contributions study the documents of the erection of the famous Cupola of the Florentine cathedral, the role of architects as researchers, the complex design of profiles for column shafts, and the architectural knowledge contained in German ‘Hausväterliteratur’. The final section is dedicated to the overall interpretation and discussion of the project’s findings about the long-term development of building knowledge. A collection of relevant sources on the epistemic history of architecture was made freely available via the ECHO website. Work on this subject is being continued in the context of the collaboration with the Werner Oechslin Library in Einsiedeln.