There is very little information at first glance on Livre d’architecture by Boffrand, which led to initial difficulties in finding keywords to ask Alice about. However, after reading into the book and interpretations of it e.g. by Van Eck in Eighteenth-Century Architecture, I discovered the book’s and authors’ close link to the concept of Architecture as Theatre. This prompted my search queries to be theater, stage setting, ornament, and poetry with the topic of conversation simply being architecture. This led me on to find correlations with the books A history of architectural theory by Hanno-Walter Kraft and The return of Art by Adolf Behne. The excerpts I was able to gather take counterpoints from each other. The former tries to show the apparent timelessness of Boffrands observation and theory, that architecture is theatre, while the latter states architecture isn’t theatre, the viewer’s interpretation of it is.
A history of architectural theory by Hanno-Walter Kraft
Kraft writes about the relationship of Architecture and Poetry and how the former is or should be built up in the same way as a poem is, illustrated by examining it in relationship to Horace’s Art of Poetry. I think this comparison is very interesting because especially in classic architecture there is a clear desire to create an experience, storyline, and concept for the viewer looking at architecture, ergo it follows the same desire a poem has in literature.
The return of Art by Adolf Behne
From the excerpts I was able to gather about this book, Behne writes about the Glashausarchitektur and how it does not announce or represent anything. It is the visitor who when approaching the Glass House sets the scene and becomes less of a spectator and more of an actor. Thereby reducing architecture’s value to that, what the spectator gives it.