Shadow : the architectural power of withholding light book cover
1st Edition

the architectural power of withholding light

ISBN 9780367442583
Published February 20, 2020 by Routledge
192 Pages 386 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

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





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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.