Alex Fernandez Grande

MArch I

De Materia Perspectiva

Advised by Andrew Holder

“I inscribe a quadrangle . . . which is considered to be an open window through which I see,” the artist and architect Leon Battista Alberti wrote in his 1425 treatise on perspective. This description surely reminds us of Albert Dürer’s woodcut of the draftsman, where a string is drawn from object to subject, intersecting the quadrangle at a single point. Da Vinci’s re-instauration of this diagram five decades later in the camera obscura jettisoned the draftsman’s string, recasting perspective as an abstract and disembodied apparatus detached from medium, the apotheosis of which is arguably the contemporary perspectival viewport. 

This thesis resituates the perspectival viewport in the material realm. Like the draftsman’s strings, the projector lines of perspective attain physical properties (applying a physics engine) and can be pushed and pulled by subjects and objects in the scene to modify how you see. Perspective no longer appears as a closed system in this material mode. It is malleable. Therefore, this thesis proposes an architecture where a singular perspective, an absolute definition of vision, and a stable view of objects is impossible, or at least elective.  

Digital drawing with figures and cubes