After one year of friendship I don’t think that I have actually learned anything from my book. It is about old ideas of buildings which are not helpful nowadays. The book has been written around 400 years ago. Now many of the described buildings belong to the past. Also, the construction materials have switched from stone and thatch to steel and concrete. So, what to do with this old book?
Since my book is written in old German one can read and understand it well. At the same time, it is exiting to decipher this old scripture – Not only the letters but also the grammar is a challenge. Easier to understand and, in my opinion, most stunning are the numerous drawings. Each one has been created by hand – without the possibility to erase errors.
The book itself is like an encyclopedia about building civil structures like barns and stables, but also about country houses. The author translates his ideas of these building typologies very precise and points out many useful hints, for example about fire protection. Besides this he explains important terms about these buildings, buildings in general and architecture for better understanding. These terms are also translated in five different languages. One could say it’s an encyclopedia and a dictionary at once.
In my opinion its fascinating to read through this. Usually you don’t have the possibility to read such an old book. You get to know former persons and former views of the world.
Maybe this book can’t teach you relevant methods and techniques for contemporary architecture, but you can experience it’s past. This friendship was not really about learning rather about experience itself.
About the exercise itself:
My highlight was the experience to browse and read through my book. With pleasure I would browse through some more of these books. Not to analyze them but to read them. The analyzation part of friends with an old book was most of the time pretty dry. Though it is necessary to get to know the book. As mentioned before the best thing, in my opinion, was the visit to the Oechslin library in Einsiedeln. Too bad that this was the only day we could read our books in real.
Noticeable is also the last task where we had to create a conversation between different books. While all other tasks were individual work this task was a group challenge. Through that this task was not only a challenging but also a funny and creative experience.