Monday, February 21, 2011

BP 6: Time is of the essence

This picture to the right showcases an aerial view of the Amiens Cathedral. It dominates the surrounding areas, but it also empowers the skyline. From above, the cross top can be seen immediately. This design solidifies how important Christianity was at this time and its significance among the whole city. It really took over the city in every, morale, and government. The cross corners point to every direction of the city and the middle reaches to the sky.

The Salisbury and Amiens Cathedral address time in a significant way. The most obvious way this idea affects these cathedrals is the amount of time spent on each one. The Salisbury Cathedral took about 38 years wh
ereas the Amiens took almost 2 centuries to finish. These cathedrals were being built because of the demand to house all the new believers. Buildings back in this time weren't just constructed for the sake of constructing. They needed this church for the believers to assemble in a large enough area and a place of sacredness. Taking over 2 centuries to build the Amiens Cathedral must have been a huge inconvenience for the people waiting to see the structure finished. Even 38 years is a long time to wait for a building to be constructed.

The essence of time is so different now than it was in the 1200s. The people who began to build this cathedral might not have even survived to see the finished product. Today, when a new church building is in demand because of an increase in church attendance, it is built within a year..never longer. These people had to wait for years!! Grandeur in stature, these cathedrals which remain standing today were constructed so intricately. The immense detail speaks volumes about the message they were conveying through their design. These cathedrals, I believe, were given such meticulous attention by the architects because they were building for God's glory. His presence was going to be in that place, and they wanted to build him something beautiful inside and out. The Salisbury Cathedral is shaped into a cross, which is the basis of Christianity. The foundation of what the church stands for is incorporated even into the design.

here's the caption for amiens cathedral that patrick and i talked about.

As time passed, building practices most likely changed. New innovations and technologies evolved over that span of time to make building more intricate and easier as well. The design of these cathedrals were manipulated on numerous occasions because of the world changing around them. The generations of builders that followed these designers probably learned from the mistakes made from the Amiens Cathedral mishap. Having the same leader and following that plan makes a difference. Amiens served as an example of what not to do and critical aspects to consider when constructing.

Even though Amiens Cathedral almost collapsed due to poor construction, the beauty it showcases is astonishing. Something beautiful can always arise from a rough beginning. Amiens and Salisbury are both works of magnificent art, yet their stories are completely different. Amiens tells the story of hardships and break ups through its architecture and design, yet it still towers above in power and dominion. Time has taken a toll on both cathedrals outside and inside yet they still carry the same awe-inspiring story that can only be communicated when you walk through the doors and create your own version.


  1. Amy, I am very impress with your blog post, your ideas are very clear and précised, very relevant. I personally enjoyed your comment "The cross corners point to every direction of the city and the middle reaches to the sky" this elevates the reader from a two D pane to a tridimensional plane. It brought me back to the pyramids of Egypt. Great job.

  2. thank you so much Jasmine! This means so much to me!