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Enlightened Architects of Edinburgh Dr. Carl Atkinson MSc Enlightenment Studies.

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Presentation on theme: "Enlightened Architects of Edinburgh Dr. Carl Atkinson MSc Enlightenment Studies."— Presentation transcript:

1 Enlightened Architects of Edinburgh Dr. Carl Atkinson MSc Enlightenment Studies

2 The enlightened architects of Edinburgh... Andrea Palladio Piranesi William Adam Robert Adam John Adam James Adam

3 An enlightened circle of friends... James Hutton Alexander Wedderburn Sir John Clark David Hume Colin Maclaurin Allan Ramsay James Boswell John Home William Robertson Adam Smith Adam Ferguson Alexander Carlyle

4 The texts in the library Andrea Palladio I quattro libri dell architettura,1737/8 William Adam Vitruvius Scoticus, 1812 Joannis Batista Piranesi The Magnificent and Architecture of Rome, 1761 Andrea Palladio The Architecture of A. Palladio,1742 ( )

5 The texts of brothers Adam Esquires Robert and James Adam The Works in Architecture (Peter Elmsly, 1778) Robert and James Adam The Works in Architecture (French reprint of ) Robert Adam Ruins of the Palace of the Emperor Diocletian at Spalato in Dalmatia

6 The philosophy of beauty in the Scottish Enlightenment The figures which excite in us the ideas of beauty seem to be those in which there is uniformity amidst diversity... What we call beautiful in objects, to speak in the mathematical style, seems to be in a compound ratio of uniformity and variety; and where the variety is equal, the beauty is as the uniformity Frances Hutcheson, Inquiry into the Original of Our Idea of Beauty and Virtue, 1725 Beauty is no quality in things themselves: it exists merely in the mind which contemplates them; and each mind perceives a different beauty David Hume, On the Standard of Taste, 1757 Beauty is such an order and construction of parts, as either by the primary constitution of our nature, by custom, or by caprice, is fitted to give a pleasure and satisfaction to the soul David Hume, On Beauty and Deformity, we have a taste for proportion independent altogether of utility. One thing indeed is certain, that any external object proportioned to our taste is delightful Henry Home, The Elements of Criticism, 1762 But the beauty arising from regularity and variety, must always yield to that which arises from the fitness of the form for the end intended Thomas Reid, Of Beauty - Essays of the Intellectual Powers, 1785

7 The philosophy of architecture according to Palladio Andrea Palladio, The Architecture of A. Palladio

8 The philosophy of architecture according to Adam It is not always that such variety can be introduced into the design of any building but where it can be attained without encroaching upon its useful purposes, it adds much to its merit, as an object of beauty and grandeur Robert & James Adam, The Works in Architecture, Preface to Volume I Number 1, 1773 Whether our works have not contributed to diffuse these improvements in architecture, throughout this country, we shall leave to the impartial public Robert & James Adam, The Works in Architecture, Preface to Volume I Number 1, 1773 Architecture has not, like some other arts, an immediate standard in nature, to which the artist can refer, and which would enable the skilful instantly to decide with respect to the degree of excellence attained in any work. In architecture, it must be formed and improved by a correct taste, and diligent study of beauties exhibited by great masters in their productions; and it is only by profound meditation upon these, that one becomes capable of distinguishing between what is graceful and what is inelegant; between that which possesses, and that which is destitute of harmony Robert & James Adam, The Works in Architecture, Preface to Volume I Number 2, 1774 Without detracting from the talents and merit of other artists, we are encouraged, by the public approbation, to flatter ourselves, that our works have somewhat contributed to diffuse juster ideas and better taste in architecture Robert & James Adam, The Works in Architecture, Preface to Volume I Number 5, 1778 Architecture has already become more elegant and more interesting. The parade, the convenience, the social pleasures of life, being better understood, are more strictly attended to in the arrangement and disposition of appartments. Greater varoety of form, greater beauty in design, greater gaiety and elegance of ornament, are introduced into interior decoration; while the outside composition is more simple, more grand, more varied in its contour, and imposes on the mind from the superior magnitude and movement of its parts. Robert & James Adam, The Works in Architecture, Preface to Volume I Number 5, 1778

9 The Images I... William Adam Mavisbank House Andrea Palladio Villa Pisani

10 The Images II Robert Adam Port at Spalato & Syon House Piranesi Terme di Tito & Port of Ripetta, Rome

11 Palladio Villa Barbaro, Trentino The buildings I Adam Family Hopetoun House, nr Edinburgh

12 The buildings II

13 The Project Deliverables...


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