Introduction to Greek Architecture

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Intro to Greek Architecture; temple layout and variations; Doric and Ionic orders. The opening slides (timelines) are optional.

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Introduction to Greek Architecture

  1. 1. Timeline  of  Western  history  
  2. 2. Timeline  of  Western  Art  
  3. 3. Timeline  of  Western  Architecture  
  4. 4. Summary  of  Ancient  Greek  history    Summary  of  the  Classical  Age    
  5. 5. Ancient  Greek  se9lements  
  6. 6. Introduc)on  to  Ancient  Greek  Architecture    The  temple  was  the  foremost  Greek  building  type;  other  monumental  buildings  (e.g.  palaces,  civic  buildings)  were  generally  derived  from  the  temple  design.    The  Greek  temple  typically  served  as  the  home  of  a  deity  statue,  before  which  ceremonies  were  conducted  by  priests;  it  was  not  a  place  of  congregaDonal  worship.    (Ancient  Greek  worship,  like  that  of  many  religions,  was  conducted  mainly  in  outdoor  ceremonies.)    Up  unDl  the  Archaic  period,  the  Greeks  constructed  their  monumental  buildings  mainly  from  wooden  Dmbers  and  clay  bricks  (like  the  Aegeans  before  them).      During  the  Archaic  period,  these  materials  were  gradually  superseded  by  stone  blocks.      Marble  was  considered  the  finest  type;  when  other  varieDes  of  stone  were  used,  they  were  oHen  coated  with  marble  dust.  
  7. 7. The  Archaic  Age  ca.  800-­‐500  BC  The  Archaic  age  was  the  formaDve  period  of  Greek  architecture,  during  which  the  typical  layouts,  proporDons,  and  decoraDve  elements  of  the  Greek  temple  were  established.  The  earliest  Greek  temple  design  was  essenDally  a  rectangular  building  with  a  por)co  (covered  porch  with  columns)  fi9ed  to  the  entrance.    This  plan  was  based  on  the  Mycenaean  megaron.    Eventually,  in  order  to  achieve  a  symmetrical  design,  a  second  por)co  was  added  to  the  opposite  end  of  the  building;  this  was  merely  a  decoraDve  porch  (a  “false  porDco”)  as  it  oHen    lacked  an    entrance.  Eventually,  the  eaves  of  the  roof  were  extended  and  supported  with  a  line  of  columns  all  the  way  around  the  building.  A  line  of  columns  that  surrounds  a  building  is  called  a  peristyle;  a  building  with  a  peristyle  is  described  as  peripteral.  
  8. 8. A  line  of  columns  is  known  as  a  colonnade;  a  colonnade  usually  supports  the  roof  of  a  building  or  covered  walkway.  In  the  la9er  case,  the  term  “colonnade”  is  someDmes  extended  to  mean  the  enDre  structure.    Likewise,  an  arcade  is  a  series  of  arches,  and  a  walkway  supported  by  arches  is  someDmes  known  as  an  “arcade”.  The  peripteral  design  is  pracDcal  as  well  as  aestheDc.  A  peripteral  building  is  inherently  surrounded  by  a  covered  walkway,  thus  providing  shelter  to  visitors  and  passers-­‐by.  Moreover,  when  a  public  square  is  surrounded  by  peripteral  buildings  (as  was  typical  in  ancient  Greece  and  Rome),  the  perimeter  of  the  square  is  lined  with  sheltered  walkways.  Naturally,  architects  embellished  on  the  standard  temple  plan  in  various  ways.  For  instance,  an  opulent  effect  was  someDmes  achieved  by  adding  a  second  peristyle  around  the  first;  this  is  known  as  a  double  peristyle.    And  while  most  Greek  buildings  featured  only  one  storey,  mulD-­‐storey  designs  (with  a  peristyle  for  each  level)  were  not  uncommon.    Circular  versions  of  the  temple  plan  also  developed;  a  circular  Greek  temple-­‐style  building  is  known  as  a  tholos.  
  9. 9. Pronaos:  The  entrance-­‐hall  (porch)  to  the  temple    Naos:  (or  Cella  in  Roman):  usually  the  larger  of  the  interior  rooms,  housed  the  cult  statue.  Opisthodomos:  Porch  at  the  rear  of  the  Naos.    
  10. 10. Basic  structure  of  a  Greek  temple   With  the  basic  layout  established,  two   disDnct  styles  of  Greek  temple   Parts  of  a  column   emerged:  the  simple  Doric  order  and   the  relaDvely  elaborate  Ionic  order.    
  11. 11. DORIC:  ‘heavy  simplicity’  The  oldest,  simplest,  and  most  massive  of  the  Greek  orders  is  the  Doric,  which  was  applied  to  temples  beginning  in  the  7th  century  B.C.  Columns  are  placed  close  together  and  are  oHen  without  bases.  Their  shaHs  are  sculpted  with  concave  curves  called  flutes.  The  capitals  are  plain  with  a  rounded  secDon  at  the  bo9om,  known  as  the  echinus,  and  a  square  at  the  top,  called  the  abacus.  The  entablature  has  a  disDncDve  frieze  decorated  with  verDcal  channels,  or  triglyphs.  In  between  the  triglyphs  are  spaces,  called  metopes,  which  were  usually  sculpted  with  figures  &  ornamentaDon.  The  frieze  is  separated  from  the  architrave  by  a  narrow  band  called  the  regula.  Together,  these  elements  formed  a  rectangular    Structure  surrounded  by  a  double  row  of  columns.  The  Doric  order    reached  its  pinnacle  of  perfecDon  in  the  Parthenon.   Doric  frieze  
  12. 12. IONIC  The  next  order  to  be  developed  by  the  Greeks  was  the  Ionic.  It  is  called  Ionic  because  it  developed  in  the  Ionian  islands  in  the  6th  century  B.C.  Roman  historian  Vitruvius  compared  this  delicate  order  to  a  female  form,  in  contrast  to  the  stockier  "male"  Doric  order.  The  Ionic  was  used  for  smaller  buildings  and  interiors.  Its  easy  to  recognize  because  of  the  two  scrolls,  called  volutes,  on  its  capital.  The  volutes  may  have  been  based  on  nauDlus  shells  or  animal  horns.  Between  the  volutes  is  a  curved  secDon  that  is  oHen  carved  with  oval  decoraDons  known  as  egg  and  dart.  Above  the  capital,  the  entablature  is  narrower  than  the  Doric,  with  a  frieze  containing  a  conDnuous  band  of  sculpture.    One  of  the  earliest  and  most  striking  examples  of  the  Ionic  order  is  the  Dny  Temple  to  Athena  Nike  at  the  entrance  to  the  Athens  Acropolis.    It  was  designed  and  built  by  Callicrates  from  about  448-­‐421  B.C.  
  13. 13. The  Greeks  conDnued  to  strive  for  perfec)on  in  the  appearance  of  their  buildings.    To  make  their  columns  look  straight,  they  bowed  them  slightly  outward  to  compensate  for  the  opDcal  illusion  that  makes  verDcal  lines  look  curved  from  a  distance.    They  named  this  effect  entasis,  which  means  "to  strain"  in  Greek.    RelaDonships  between  columns,  windows,  doorways,  and  other  elements  were  constantly  analyzed  to  find  pleasing  dimensions  that  were  in  harmony  with  nature  and  the  human  body.      Symmetry,  and  the  unity  of  parts  to  the  whole,  were  important  to  Greek  architecture,  as  these  elements  reflected  the  democraDc  city-­‐state  pioneered  by  the  Greek  civilizaDon.  
  14. 14. Doric   Ionic  
  15. 15. Doric   Ionic  
  16. 16. Worksheet:  using  your  lesson  notes,  label  the  diagrams  and  name  the  orders  
  17. 17. Worksheet:  using  your  lesson  notes,  label  the  diagrams  and  name  the  orders  
  18. 18. Sources  and  extra  informaDon:  h9p://www.essenDal-­‐humaniDes.net    h9p://www.dummies.com/how-­‐to/content/greek-­‐architecture-­‐doric-­‐ionic-­‐or-­‐corinthian.html  h9p://staff.fcps.net/bconaway/Architecture/Greek%20Temple%20parts/gk_temple_parts.htm  h9p://www.mlahanas.de/Greeks/Arts/GreekTemple.htm    Gardner’s  ‘Art  through  the  Ages’          

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