Wednesday, September 23, 2015

QUATREFOIL used in Exterior Architecture

I started a search of the quatrefoil and of course found a ton of designs using this shape. First one that came to mind was the famous bronze door castings by Lorenzo Ghiberti. I remember these doors from my college Art History classes and before I get to far ahead of myself you may be wondering what a quatrefoil looks like.

Definition of QUATREFOIL

:  a conventionalized representation of a flower with four petals or of a leaf with four leaflets
:  a 4-lobed foliation in architecture

Lorenzo Ghiberti, an Early Renaissance sculpter,  won the competition to construct those Baptistry Doors. The beautifully poured casting each telling their own story are set inside the quatrefoil shape.
Close up you see two sculpter's submission each displaying the biblical story of Abraham sacrifying his son Isaac.
The usuage of the quatrafoil throughout the years in architecture appears as a dominating choice today through several industries. Not only is the quatrefoil found on exterior doors and buildings, but many manufacturers of carpet, material, wood, plastics, and wallpaper display the design as a current design choice. I plan on talking about those too, but that will be in another post. Today I want to specifically zero in on exterior Architecture. 
Venice - Doge's Palace
When I take myself on an imaginary vacation it tends to be in Italy. I will have to say going here would be in the top 5 destinations I would choose. Having studied these buildings, artist, sculptor's I feel the pull to go see it for myself. 
Notre Dame

Of couse the quatrefoil can be found in other locations for instance the photo above is of Notre Dame Cathedral Paris, France. Construction began in 1163.
Spanish Mediterranean homes architecture

I know this picture above is a little blurry but this modern home proudly display's the quatrefoil around it's foyer roof line. 
Garden Nook
Here it was designed into this cute garden area and is a definite focal point. American Architects are using the quatrefoil in their creations as shown in this photo below of a residential home in Southern California.
American Architecture: Mission Revival
Clearly you can see how this shape has benefitted the design world. From the early 1100's cathedrals constructed to present day, architects remain firm in using the quatrefoil shape.  
Take a look around your town to see if you can spot them either in old or new construction sites.
I will keep on the lookout and report any of my findings. 

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