[ENG] Construction 66: Striped column (1) - the base

01/01/16 | ۩ |

Now that I know marble cutting is possible even without mechanic tools, I can face the construction of the column, obviously starting from its base.

The model I adopt is basically taken from the columns of the "20 settembre" street in Genoa, right below the medieval church of S.Stefano. The portico was built in late 19th century and is not a medieval structure, but in spite of their young age the columns are inspired by old genoese architecture and will be a good starting point for my creation.
In a philological way it is a fault, but what matters more from my point of view is not the historical precision of the construction, but its plausibility.
I'll try to explain in other words. The question I make to myself is this: "Is it possible that, in the late medieval age, somebody in this town could have built a palace like this?"
If the answer is "Yes", then this can be taken as a reference.

When we observe the old medieval buildings we can detect clear limits given by the social position of the owner and by his financial means. Who could think to spend a lot of money just to put a column partially made with marble (more expensive than other stones) in a room that is not visible from the street?
As I already told, the owners of the Domus are rich people and can grant themselves this luxury and even more.
To have an idea of how the warehouse could look once finished, you can see this study published in an old post of the blog.

Back to the construction: I can easily carve the different parts of the base of my column: a double stone pedistal and the octagonal marble base on which the shaft will lay.

The pedistal will be reduced at a later time by removing the lower block. The base was too high, adding weight to the column even in a visual way.

I succeed in carving the base along the eight sides without any damage, differently from what happened during the previous test.
The tools I used here are basically metal hand files: round, square and flat.

Once finished the parts of the base, I can spend some time making a piece of the shaft, just a test before the next step of the construction.
The first segment and the last one will be made with slate to separate the body of the column from the base and the capital, both made using white marble.

I still don't know exactly how many segments will form the shaft, but the pieces must be very carefully shaped to correspond each other.
A good method could be this: cut a single slate bar into slices, do the same with a marble bar and then join the segments, interchanged.

I'll deal with all this in a future post. Now that I know exactly the space occupied by the pedistal, I can start laying the floor of the warehouse...

slate, white marble

sandpaper, round, square and flat files, hacksaw, hammer and chisel.

SIZES (in cm):
pedistal (lower part): discarded
pedistal (upper part): perimeter 1,9 x 1,9; height 1,15;
marble base: height 0,7;
shaft segments: diameter 1,5; side 0,6; height 0,6 (white stripes) 0,7 (black stripes).


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