Usynligheder. Historiografiske problemer i fremstillinger af arkitekturens rum og farve

  • Maria Fabricius Hansen


The Invisibilities of Architecture. Representations of Space and Colour as Historiographical Problems

Architectural history has been characterized by a reluctance to acknowledge the significance of colour and space. Books have been illustrated in black and white long after illustrations in colour became current in publications on other subjects. The motley heterogeneity of medieval architecture is one aspect of past architecture that has been somewhat neglected. Small reproductions of buildings on book pages have, moreover, tended to turn architecture into an image, rather than acknowledging its spatial shape and surroundings. The choice of black and white illustrations and the focus on two-dimensionality are founded in an aesthetic ideal of classicism, understood as a concept of style characterized by monotony, homogeneity, and timelessness. The article addresses our tendency as architectural historians to disregard the qualities that have not been consistent with what we expected of historical architecture, with our notion of the true image of these buildings. The case study of the article is meant to exemplify the temporality embedded in our representation of the history of art and architecture: each generation of art historians observes new truths in their study of historical material. When these new aspects of, for instance, a building become visible at a certain time, it is related to the technical medial possibilities of our discipline as well.

Hansen, M. (1). Usynligheder. Historiografiske problemer i fremstillinger af arkitekturens rum og farve. Periskop – Forum for Kunsthistorisk Debat, 15(18), 102-117. Hentet fra