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Title: Interpretations of marks from draughting tools in some Italian Renaissance drawings : evidence for the use of geometrical and numerical design systems
Author: Ford, Edward Alan
ISNI:       0000 0000 5247 5076
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2002
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The focus of this thesis is the examination of evidence left by draughting tools in Italian Renaissance drawings. Because of the archaeological evidence of tool marks it is possible to investigate artists' use of design systems in a scien-tific manner, with almost forensic certainty. When evidence is sufficient and in-terpreted in the context of design traditions, the sequence of steps that the de-signer employed can be recreated, shedding light on the artists' methods and the decisions that informed the design process. The historical survey in Part I describes the origins and subsequent man-ifestations of two primary design systems that, I argue, were traditional among designers up to the Renaissance. These are the numerical and geometrical sys-tems of designs. Numerical systems involve simple ratios that derive from re-lationships found in nature, e.g. musical harmonies. Geometrical systems in-volve using a compass and straightedge to locate points and intersections that aid in building compositions. Part II contains analyses of physical evidence in drawings by Leonardo, Antonio da Sangallo, Palladio, Uccello, Michelangelo and Peruzzi. My conclusion is that evidence from draughting tools can be brought to bear on the question of artists' design procedures; that information on artists' design procedures, thus obtained, cannot usually be found anywhere else; and that revealing the information requires the implementation of an investigative methodology. This methodology involves examining and recording the tool marks and determining the sequence of their creation by reference to the de-sign traditions. The results of the drawing analyses provide examples of artists design procedures revealed by this methodology. As a draughtsman and designer myself, I have a special appreciation for drawings, compositions and the process of making them. It is my hope that others who share this appreciation and desire to investigate further, can benefit from the methodology and investigatory results of this thesis.
Supervisor: Kemp, Martin Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Italian Renaissance Drawing