What great quotes should I use to describe plan, section and elevation drawings in architecture?
October 26, 2008 11:55 AM   Subscribe

I'm writing a paper which deals with architectural representation. In doing so I'm providing very brief explanations of plans, sections & elevations intended to bring a non-design crowd up to speed on these conventions. I'm looking for informative and quasi-poetic quotes to describe, contextualize and problematize these drawing types. What should I use?

I'm obviously referring to Le Corbusier's famous assertion that "the plan is the generator" and also found this great essay by Mason White on plans. I'm kind of stumped for elevations and sections though, can anybody offer any help... I need some sound bite quotes that cut to the essence of what these drawings offer. They'll offer a nice poetic counterpoint to dry writing about picture planes!
posted by serial_consign to Media & Arts (3 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
With a Section you are drawing the space while elevations depict the surface.
posted by seanaes at 1:16 PM on October 26, 2008

My interpretation of the work of Louis I. Kahn comes with a sense that the elevation is an expression of the plan. Problem here though, is that I can not think of a quote that might be attributed to him that expresses this.

I've always leaned towards the Corbusier axiom you note and frankly, even in my studies of architecture in graduate school, my attempts to work with sections in the same spirit as expressed in that quote failed miserably. Of course, I am not half the architect that Corbusier or many others are -- therein might lie my failure -- but the fact is that we move through space with respect to gravity. Hence, the plan is the ultimate generator.
posted by Dick Paris at 2:15 PM on October 26, 2008

Another from Le Corbusier, which is germane if some of the stuff you're reviewing / critiquing / analyzing are homes or domestic spaces: "The house is a machine for living in." But this is on the wikipedia page, so maybe you've already seen it.
posted by zpousman at 5:01 PM on October 26, 2008

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