In Praise of Circles
One single line with the potential to create infinity. That is the birth of circles.
As a fundamental shape of all objects created and designed, it is almost impossible to identify our surroundings with an absence of circles. This week, we’re sharing a few inspirational facts of how a simple curved line, connected from tip to tip, formulates what is round and fluid in design and how this character ultimately defines the foundation of all structural details.
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Brion Cemetery by Carlo Scarpa, San Vito d’Altivole, Italy
Scarpa’s remarkable cemetery outside of Venice demonstrates the modernist Italian architect’s intimate knowledge of and respect for raw materials. His interest in geometry and the interplay between positive and negative space is evident throughout this mysterious space that feels at once ancient and modern. Two intersecting circles make up the “viewing device” in the pavilion of meditation, forming the vesica piscis motif featured in both Christian art and Euclidian geometry.
Phillips Exeter Academy Library by Louis Kahn
“It’s practically illegal to talk about strong geometry in architecture and not mention Louis Kahn. The architect’s monumental buildings are iconic in their use of circular, square and triangular motifs. This library’s dramatic atrium features enormous circular openings that offer views into the book stacks."
Nakagin Capsule Tower by Kisho Kurokawa Shimbashi in Tokyo, Japan //