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Picturing Machines 1400-1700 : Transformations: Studies in the History of Science and Technology - Wolfgang Lefevre

Picturing Machines 1400-1700

Transformations: Studies in the History of Science and Technology

By: Wolfgang Lefevre (Editor)

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Technical drawings by the architects and engineers of the Renaissance made use of a range of new methods of graphic representation. These drawings--among them Leonardo da Vinci's famous drawings of mechanical devices--have long been studied for their aesthetic qualities and technological ingenuity, but their significance for the architects and engineers themselves is seldom considered. The essays in "Picturing Machines 1400-1700" take this alternate perspective and look at how drawing shaped the practice of early modern engineering. They do so through detailed investigations of specific images, looking at over 100 that range from sketches to perspective views to thoroughly constructed projections. In early modern engineering practice, drawings were not merely visualizations of ideas but acted as models that shaped ideas. "Picturing Machines" establishes basic categories for the origins, purposes, functions, and contexts of early modern engineering illustrations, then treats a series of topics that not only focus on the way drawings became an indispensable means of engineering but also reflect the main stages in their historical development. The authors examine the social interaction conveyed by early machine images and their function as communication between practitioners; the knowledge either conveyed or presupposed by technical drawings, as seen in those of Giorgio Martini and Leonardo; drawings that required familiarity with geometry or geometric optics, including the development of architectural plans; and technical illustrations that bridged the gap between practical and theoretical mechanics.

"Lefevre has orchestrated a rich collection of work by a stellar cast of Renaissance scholars, and the result is a superb volume in the tradition of Michael Baxandall's *Painting and Experience in Fifteenth-Century Italy*. These studies explore the invention of pictorial language, as well as the bodies of technical practice that permitted technical drawings to function as mediators between practical engineering, design work, and theoretical knowledge for patrons and professional engineers alike. A brilliant book!"--Tim Lenoir, Kimberly Jenkins Chair for New Technologies in Society, Duke University This excellent set of case studies offers many rewards. Erudite and skillful specialists, both American and European, show in rich detail how drawings of machines were made and used in early modern Europe. They illuminate the formal development of geometries of representation, the social relations between engineers, artisans, and patrons, and a wide range of other topics. Every essay rests on a deep foundation of drawings, lavishly reproduced and precisely analyzed. Historians of art, of architecture, and of Renaissance court and urban culture, as well as specialists on the history of science and technology, will find this volume indispensable. Anthony Grafton, Henry Putnam University Professor of History, Princeton University "This excellent set of case studies offers many rewards. Erudite and skillful specialists, both American and European, show in rich detail how drawings of machines were made and used in early modern Europe. They illuminate the formal development of geometeries of representation, the social relations between engineers, artisans, and patrons, and a wide range of other topics. Every essay rests on a deep foundation of drawings, lavishly reproduced and precisely analyzed. Historians of art, of architecture, and of Renaissance court and urban culture, as well as specialists on the history of science and technology, will find this volume indispensable."--Anthony Grafton, Henry Putnam University Professor of History, Princeton University "*Getting Under the Skin* breaks the impasse over embodiment and disembodiment haunting recent studies in new media through a brilliant critical engagement with the traditions of phenomenology, psychoanalysis, and corporeal feminism. Arguing that our notions and experiences of embodiment are enmeshed in a dialectical tension of fragmentation/holism framed by media, Wegenstein draws on various sources of popular culture to demonstrate that at the turn of the millennium, the body has turned into an 'organ without a body' or, better, into an 'organ instead of a body.' Her timely reconceptualization of the body as the basis for media offers new direction for thinking about the body and human agency in an era of nanoscale fragmentation and rapidly blurring distinctions between hardware and life."--Tim Lenoir, Kimberly Jenkins Chair for New Technologies in Society, Duke University

Introductionp. 1
Why Pictures of Machines?
Introduction to Part Ip. 13
Why Draw Pictures of Machines? The Social Contexts of Early Modern Machine Drawingsp. 17
Pictorial Languages and Social Characters
Introduction to Part IIp. 51
The Origins of Early Modern Machine Designp. 53
Social Character, Pictorial Style, and the Grammar of Technical Illustrations in Craftsmen's Manuscripts in the Late Middle Agesp. 85
Seeing and Knowing
Introduction to Part IIIp. 115
Picturing the Machine: Francesco di Giorgio and Leonardo da Vinci in the 1490sp. 117
Measures of Success: Military Engineering and the Architectonic Understanding of Designp. 143
Producing Shapes
Introduction to Part IVp. 173
Renaissance Descriptive Geometry: The Codification of Drawing Methodsp. 175
The Emergence of Combined Orthographic Projectionsp. 209
Projections Embodied in Technical Drawings: Durer and His Followersp. 245
Practice Meets Theory
Introduction to Part Vp. 279
Drawing Mechanicsp. 281
Appendix
Contributorsp. 309
Referencesp. 311
Name Indexp. 335
Subject Indexp. 339
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780262122696
ISBN-10: 0262122693
Series: Transformations: Studies in the History of Science and Technology
Audience: Professional
For Ages: 18+ years old
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 354
Published: 1st August 2004
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 17.8  x 3.2
Weight (kg): 0.86