The drawing of the five classical orders, that is to say of that true and proper jewel of compositional harmony which was invented in the early Renaissance and was handed down to us by the writers of treatises, is to this day of fundamental importance in an architect's training, just as Bach's preludes and fugues for the well -tempered harpsichord are an obligatory part of a pianist's technical and musical training. We ask why, given that modern architecture no longer avails itself of such paradigms (while the quest for a similar syntaxis is still in progress)? One can reply to this question by considering the plan, as well as surveying and knowledge or classical architecture. With regard to plan: the drawing of the order teaches one to appreciate the proportions which exist between the metrical quantities, which are by themselves unimportant. As regards surveying and historical knowledge: the drawing of an order teaches architecture's internal hierarchy and hence guides the selection of the parts to be surveyed and represented, in relation to the scale on which they are depicted, reveals the play of the relations and unveils the interplay of the ancient units of measure. It would therefore appear opportune to study the treatises from the point of view, decidedly special, of who wishes to learn to draw the classical order: to design, that is to say to learn. And in pursuing this study one realizes that there is still a lot of work to be done. The process of construction, or, if you like, the planning of the order would appear to have turned its back on Vitruvius's transparent logic of subsequent partitions in favor or Vignola's obscure rule of submultiples of the Modulus (to arrive, in recent times, at Chitman 's absurd proposition.) Nonetheless, it is not difficult to reconstruct this process if only one tries and uses the same mathematical and geometrical instruments of the epoch. In Renaissance culture, a square root is a geometric construction which is executed by means or a compass Why then should the techniques of tracing and coeval calculation not be adopted for surveying and studying classical monuments, as happens with units of measurements? Once again, this study, which has still to be examined in depth, reveals the contradictions between the text and the figure, between graphical and numerical relations which are a constant feature of classical treatises, and these contradictions, jar from causing concern, often provide insights into the design process. Why,finally, Five easy pieces? Because it is not difficult to learn and teach (or rather first to teach and then to learn), but it is only science which has not yet sufficiently clarified matters to reveal the simple and immediate rules which form the structure and, perhaps, representation of the order is one of these. Hence the principal ambition of this work is divulgation. It is more than likely that this ambition will remain frustrated, despite the author's good intentions, at least in this case it will stand as testimony to the heuristic and instructive value of the drawing of the orders, in a moment of almost total oblivion, and the hope that its teaching in architecture schools will be resumed.
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|Titolo:||Il disegno degli ordini e il rilievo dell'architettura classica: Cinque Pezzi Facili|
|Data di pubblicazione:||1991|
|Appare nella tipologia:||01a Articolo in rivista|