This week we are examining the architectural history between 1500-750 BCE that brings us the Cretan people who are a peace-loving society, merged and has lack of fortification. In their cities, they don’t have much of a hierarchical dispute, therefore, their indirect circulation throughout the city results in the labyrinth-like organizations that function as an interrelated physical web, unlike any societal dwellings.These people have a large sympathy for the natural landscape of that area which protects them from outsiders and exemplifies an understanding of an integration into the land. They only have Fortified towers that protect the whole civilization which suggests some kind of organizing factors that gets rid of inland disputes. In their communities, there is a tight mesh of narrow streets that connect together in a complex urban textured manner. With this much densely packed area there’s also a technology that enables them to introduce an indoor plumbing system which is very sophisticated for its nature. Minoan Crete’s another distinct quality is the ceiling windows which was also unheard of.
Throughout centuries these monumental structures made by Minoans got destroyed several times caused by natural disasters despite that the fact that they perished the nature and its potential. After the eruption of a volcano, the city got very weakened and shortly after, got taken over by the Mycenaeans. They had a very militaristic approach to their society and their architects designed lithic, solid and hierarchical structures stemming from this approach which was very different from the nonhierarchical Minoans. Their houses lacked big openings and relationships with nature. A shift from pleasure towards dread occurred. This situation lasted for some time and also shifted towards the Hittites in now Turkey.
Now we move on to Ancient Egypt where the pyramids limited the spatial discoveries and complexities to develop for centuries. With the change of power with notably Hatshepsut, she transformed architecture into a new spatial organization that function to bolster her rule. With the emergence of advanced technologies, new temples and residential developments also transformed. Sequences from open spaces to closed spaces became evident in the use of gigantic columns and colossal statues. After the queen’s rule, with the rule of Akhenaten temples and buildings gained more light with the new idea of the sun religion-related with Ra. Consequently, Pharaohs that followed them became obsessed with their afterlife image and became god-like symbols. Their paintings and their monumental statues saturated the cities. In these times, the religion became more involved with the public and temples began to be located on both sides of the rivers and be connected by a “fastigium” that passes through a general axis that relates itself to the temples and the city.
We were assigned in our Arch 111 class, a photo essay that is coherent by following the same theme. The theme is Solid Void and Light and Shadow.