Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Ten Books on Architecture Part 5

Suger was not an architect, but the Abbot of St Denis in Paris who was responsible for transforming the old Carolingian Church into the first Gothic cathedral. The architect or designer of this 12th century work is unknown. Suger wrote in one of his books about his 'circular string of chapels, by virtue of which the whole church would shine with the wonderful and uninterrupted light of most luminous windows, pervading the interior beauty'.  I've always been fascinated by the use of stained glass by Suger to create a magical and mystical ambience.   I love to visit St Denis in Paris not only for the wonderful tombs of the Kings and Queens of France, but for the mystical experience of the light from the windows on a sunny day, which transforms the material into the immaterial.

Photo Helen Malone 2011

Photo Helen Malone 2011

For the Suger book, the structure I chose was a tunnel book.  I folded two lenths of Canson paper into concertina spines.

Arched openings were cut out of the pages

A stained glass window was painted on Fabriano water colour paper with gouache.

The book was constructed with the painting at the back and the pages were attached into each fold of the spine on one side, and then the opposite sides were glued.

The concertina on the open side was cut off and glued down and the opposite side left with two extra folds to be filled by two pages inserted at the front of the book

The front and back covers were made and attached to the back panel and the concertina at the front.

The next post will feature Book 5 Mackintosh.


ronnie said...

I love the tales you tell behind the work - I had no idea of these luminaries of architecture - and I feel like I'm getting a potted history of the field whilst enjoying gorgeous booky structures - thanks and thanks again!

Helen M said...

It's not hard to tell that along with Illuminated manuscripts, Architecture was my favourite part of Art History - and it is so well suited to my love of structure!

dinahmow said...

And I am looking forward to Mackintosh!

Helen M said...

Sounds like you admire Mackintosh as much as I do Di.