The Four Elements of Architecture
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (December 2013)|
|Original title||Die vier Elemente der Baukunst|
|Translator||Harry F. Mallgrave
Published in English
The Four Elements of Architecture is a book by the German architect Gottfried Semper. Published in 1851, it is an attempt to explain the origins of architecture through the lens of anthropology. The book divides architecture into four distinct elements: the hearth, the roof, the enclosure and the mound. The origins of each element can be found in the traditional crafts of ancient "barbarians":
- hearth – fire, ceramics
- roof – carpentry
- enclosure – weaving
- mound – stonemasonry
Semper, stating that the hearth was the first element created: "around the hearth the first groups assembled; around it the first alliances formed; around it the first rude religious concepts were put into the customs of a cult."
Enclosures (walls) were said to have their origins in weaving. Just as fences and pens were woven sticks, the most basic form of a spatial divider still seen in use in parts of the world today is the fabric screen. Only when additional functional requirements are placed on the enclosure (such as structural weight-bearing needs) does the materiality of the wall change to something beyond fabric.
- "Oxford Dictionary of Architecture & Landscaping:Gottfried Semper". Retrieved 21 March 2013.
- Johnson, Deborah; Ogawa, David (2005). Seeing and beyond. Peter Lang Publishing. p. 167. ISBN 9780820470849. Retrieved 21 March 2013.
- Semper, Gottfried. The Four Elements of Architecture and Other Writings. Trans. Harry F. Mallgrave and Wolfgang Herrmann (Cambridge, 1989). ISBN 0-521-35475-7
- Semper, Gottfried. Style in the Technical and Tectonic Arts; or, Practical Aesthetics. Trans. Harry F. Mallgrave (Santa Monica, 2004). ISBN 0-89236-597-8
- Hvattum, Mari. Gottfried Semper and the Problem of Historicism (Cambridge, 2004). ISBN 0-521-82163-0
- Mallgrave, Harry Francis. Gottfried Semper - Architect of the Nineteenth Century (New Haven/London, 1996). ISBN 0-300-06624-4
|This article about a book on architecture or urbanism is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|