Here is the last version of my models for the jury which show my design in the scale of 1/2oo.
This chapter mainly focuses on the time being (after the fall of Constantinople) where feudal system got stronger; the importance between Rome and Christianity. The popes got real power and got control over decisions about the city, which also made them in charge of any urban design and regulations. Architecture was directed by religion, it also reflects the importance and the immense power of religion. They made radical changes; they re-designed the city. They constructed new streets and arranged the old ones accordingly. The importance here is that the socially important concepts are also tangible in the city buildings and the buildings related with the city. The popes are also contributing to the architecture by increasing their respect and reputation within the society. City now had new point of inflluence which controls the growth of the city; basilicas (the religious structures) are the focus points like cores. The pope also made decisions of economic and architectural manners. He decided on the amount of bugdet which would be spend on architecture.
There is this example of free-standing column in the piazza (which is framed by two long, curving colonnades) in front of St. Peter Basilica which is mainly positioned at the center of the piazza, emphasized and out in the open. The column is an egyptian obelisk which comes from the Baroque inspiration of the Bernini. It is removed from from its actual place in Egypt, by the order of Pope Sixtus V. The religious and political charaters are meeged into one person which leads the society. The column interconnects the piazza and the basilica but also creates a contrasting effect of the verticality.
Since this whole semester is coming to an end, it also means the end of a whole design studio; therefore the end of the project which had been going on almost for 3 months, there are tons and tons of things to do, literally. Now, there is thing with the studio, we had been trying to develop our design in time by talking million times with our teachers and change a lot of things, there were those moments we had no idea what we were doing, got hopeless and so much stressed about the exhausting work which seems it will never end… Well, this is it; the end! But as in any movies, before the happy ending, there are going to be the darkest times; the heroes had to have the toughest fight of their lives to achieve the ultimate happiness… As architecture students, now is the time to stop to work with our messy old models and get prepared for the final jury. The funny thing about that is we all make our designs in a mess but when it comes to presentation ( I mean jury) it is shown as if there were no hard times, everything is in order, everybody is aware of what they are doing with the prepared perfectly formed jury models and posters. The painful background is lost as if it has never existed, there was always happiness and relaxation. Anyway, these are the hard times in which there are more advanced works are expected from us, the stress level increases with sleepless nights, after a while, the only thing that keep me going is that we are all going to accomplish great works and projects in the future.
First of all, there are two pioneer movements or events of the Renaissance which had changed the human history. One was the discovery of a new continent: America and the other was rediscovery of the Classical past.
At the time, Spain and Portugal were powerful leading nations of Europe and Europe was now the center of colonialism. Slavery and the hunger of earning more and more gold was the ultimate aim of all European nations. Asia and Africa were exploited due to their fertile lands, slave labor force.
As mentioned above, Spain was eager to become the greatest power in Europe and the richness of America was serving to that aimed goal. The more free and scientific ideas were spread and the blocking of the conventional trade roads pushed Europe to search alternative trade roads. Additionally, the brutal competition of the Europe also led a great discovery: the whole new egzotic and mysterious continent with highest level of civilization.
There was three high civilizations: the Maya; at the Center America and South America, the Aztecs; in the central Mexico and the Incas; along the west coast of South America. The Maya had a long and rich cultural heritage, also had a long settlement history. Stone temples with corbel vaults and stepped pyramids were found as their architectural pieces. Before the Spain conquered these lands, the Maya were monumental cores in the most developed cities, which are formed by temple pyramids, ball courts and palaces. These structures were surrounded by paved public spaces. There was the ‘stelai’ which are dynastic monuments (monuments of rulers and their families) also had a ritual sense. The palaces had no consensus, these structures consisted of long shapes without any windows and with huge platforms used as a storey building. The temple pyramid, which is steep and tall along the sky, has a narrow way direction only in one axis which led the temple to the summit. (Geometric purpose) Tikal and Palenque had resembled to Egypt and Pergamon according to harmony of height, fat-roofed masses and varying usage of plaza and temple-pyramids. Tikal was one of the biggest cities of Maya in which there were not a line between the fabric and the nature. There were different classes and their housing was also differ. For example, the nobles and merchants had more substantial houses closer to the ceremonial center (religious function).
The Aztec civilization was situated near Lake Texcoco and surrounded by mountains which also provided a cooler climate, especially the capital was landed on a swampy island. There were canals which link the city and its parts. Aztecs were literary people who were left the written records which enlightened their understanding of their culture. They enlarged their cities by turning the lake mud into arable land which allowed them to use that extra amount of land. The streets were actually canals and they made use of wooden bridges. Thatelolco had one of the biggest marketplace of the world, therefore merchandise and terrace housing was very developed.
Inca was a glorious civilization which had enough technology to cut stone and fix it exactly the proper way they wanted it to be. So, Inca architecture was known for its masonry, shaped stones without mortar. In the reading, Kostof resembled Incas to Romans due to their talent to create a centralized structure which was quite interesting. Inca arranged houses in a square with a common yard called “cancha”. The normal house of Inca had a number of rectangular rooms around a court, which was wrapped n an enclosed wall. This approach had shaped the roots of new way of accomplishing religious architecture in America. The Inca cities didn’t have a city wall but it was guarded by a fortress nearby. They also didn’t use grid or any other layout system. There are for example central plazas, but their shape differed. The topography was one of the most influential thing which shaped them, their architecture and their society.