Defining Artifact and Context in Gothic Architecture: Why It's Not So Obvious
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This talk will discuss the “edges” of the Gothic cathedral. Cathedral buildings are big and their walls meet the ground solidly, so how and why are the boundaries of the artifact in fact less definite than they appear? Meanwhile, the setting for such buildings appears to be consistently urban but "context" can be variously construed even within the restricted realms of urban form and spatial practice. The signal example of the Cathedral of Notre Dame at Chartres will provide material for a thumbnail case study of these challenges to interpretation.