This book acts on one side as a legitimate study of doors, the difference and juxtaposition of rustic and delicate, and on the other as a catalogue for renaissance architects.
The Extraordinario Libro di Architettura di Sebastiano Serlio is divided into 6 parts.It has an Introduction and a short biography about Serlio. But the important parts are the two texts: “Descrittione delle trenta porta rustiche” and “Descrittione delle vinti porta dilicate”,as well as the other two parts with matching drawings of the overall 50 doors. Each drawing is numbered and makes it easy to find the matching description to it as well as navigating through the book itself
Obviously the focus of the book is on Doors. Serlio then differs between delicate and rustic doors. Through my observation the doors seem to all have similarities. Almost all of them are inspired by antique Temples, even containing similar features that could be found as such a temple. Many have Columns by all kinds of order, they have a gable, a architrav, triglyphs, even a geison. Additionally many of the doors have space for a sign.
Those features can be found in both, the rustic and the delicate doors. The most significant differences lie however in their materiality. The rustic doors are most often made from big natural stones (sometimes even wood) that are only put in shape while remaining like their natural occurrence. Those doors seem massiv, sturdy, tenacious furthermore arouses the raw material a natural feeling within the beholder.The delicate doors however seem to be exclusively made out of processed materials. Giving the doors a more refined and delicate look. Those doors are carefully build and awaken on the contrary a feeling of superiority over nature. Those doors are more a celebration of human craft and construction.
However what is almost more important than the doors is the fact that this book was a perfect source for many. One could say that this was indeed a catalogue. A collection of many iterations of rustic and delicate doors. This catalogue simplified the lives of carpenters, builders and architects, as they either could get inspiration for doors from this book or they could even just copy it. In other words this is also one of the first normalizations in architecture. Architects no longer have to design each door separately, they could just pick one.
Keyword: Comparison, Iteration, Normalization