History Of World Architecture: Renaissance And Baroque Era

2149 words - 9 pages

Renaissance, Mannerism, Baroque.
The Renaissance Period is one of the well known periods in the history of architecture which is later followed by another known period called the Baroque Era. The Renaissance Era in architecture begins when artists sought to create a new style which is totally different to those of its predecessor at the same time also reviving the styles of which the Romans and Greeks had done before them. This period saw the birth of many new architects that are notable for the Renaissance style; Brunelleschi, the inaugurator of the Renaissance style in Florence, Alberti in Rome, and Bramante for his inauguration of High Renaissance.
The characteristics of this period are distinct in many ways. One of it is that it focuses on the proportions of things. Importance of human form as a basic of proportion distinguishes Renaissance architecture than those of Gothic.
‘The planning of temples depends upon symmetry..It arises from proportion… Proportion consists in taking in a fixed module, in each case both parts of a building and for the whole, by which the method of symmetry is put into practice’ (Vitruvius, De Arch., III, i)
According to Alberti, one of the main points of Vetruvius is the key role of proportion. The excerpt from Vitruvius Book III shows that proportion is the key element to have a regular shaped floor plan. Due to this, Alberti in his work emphasize the usage of proportion in his works which later is implemented by various architects during this period though it was Brunnellschi whom thought of the importance of integration of the plan in accordance to the façade in the first place. A quick look a building plans proves that during this era the use symmetry, squares and proportions in accordance to the modules always present thus becoming one of the notable characteristics of this period.
According to him, by carefully using proportion in design, it means that all the elements of the body or structure must be in harmony and taking out any part of the body will result in disharmony. It is clear that without a logical proportion and harmony a building plan and façade would look like out of order which I assume people during this time is trying to avoid as the Renaissance was a reaction towards the disarray and chaos that the time before it had brought with to the civilization.
Another characteristic in this period is that of the façade. As been mentioned above, the application of symmetry was important. Facades of buildings are symmetrical in their vertical axis. This is true when we look for examples of Renaissance building where the facades are often symmetrical and the structures such as columns and windows are focused towards the centre of the building. Another thing that is notable is that the usage of repetition in the façade where the openings of doors are often repeated with the central door or entrance is emphasized by balcony or rustication of the surrounding which can be observed in most buildings...

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