Shadow: the architectural power of withholding light, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover


the architectural power of withholding light, 1st Edition

By Simon Unwin


184 pages | 386 B/W Illus.

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Paperback: 9780367442583
pub: 2020-03-12
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Each of these Analysing Architecture Notebooks is devoted to a particular theme in understanding the rich and varied workings of architecture. They can be thought of as addenda to the foundation volume Analysing Architecture, which first appeared in 1997 and has subsequently been enlarged in three further editions. Examining these extra themes as a series of Notebooks, rather than as additional chapters in future editions, allows greater space for more detailed exploration of a wider variety of examples, whilst avoiding the risk of the original book becoming unwieldy.

Shadows may be insubstantial but they are, nevertheless, an important element in architecture. In prehistoric times we sought shade as a refuge from the hot sun and chilling rain. Through history architects have used shadows to draw, to mould form, to paint pictures, to orchestrate atmosphere, to indicate the passing of time … as well as to identify place. Sometimes shadow can be the substance of architecture.

Table of Contents


Introduction – Our World of Shadow

Shadow Types

Drawing Shadow – Sciagraphy

Drawing with Shadow

Practical Shadow

Problematic Shadow

Shadow Container

Contained Shadow

Shadow Threshold

Narrative Shadow

Regional Shadow

Stage Set for Shadow

Shadow and Time

Japanese Shadow

Islamic Shadow

Le Corbusier – Architect of Shadow





About the Author

Simon Unwin is Emeritus Professor of Architecture at the University of Dundee in Scotland. Although retired, he continues to teach at the Welsh School of Architecture in Cardiff University, Wales, where he taught for many years. His books are used in schools of architecture around the world and have been translated into various languages.

About the Series

Analysing Architecture Notebooks

Building on the popularity of Analysing Architecture, this new series explores major themes in architectural theory and design in greater depth. Covering a range of timeless topics, each book helps students to understand how different ideas and concepts have influenced major buildings and their architects.

Written by bestselling author Simon Unwin, the series follows his well-known style and features his beautiful, high-quality drawings. Each book starts with an introductory essay before breaking down key concepts into manageable chunks through annotated drawings and short, explanatory paragraphs.

Known for his clear, accessible style, the author has helped thousands of students learn to think as architects. His compelling analysis and presentation make books in the series ideal for students and anyone else interested in architecture.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
ARCHITECTURE / Design, Drafting, Drawing & Presentation
ARCHITECTURE / History / General
ARCHITECTURE / Interior Design / General
ARCHITECTURE / Study & Teaching