Monday, October 24, 2005

Theatrum Machinarum Novum

Alternative entry titles:

  • Vintage Mechaporn
  • MC Escher Engineering
  • Renaissance Coffee Grinding
  • others?
Georg Andreas Böckler (1644-1698) was a German architect, author and engineer who designed Nuremburg. The above illustrations come from his hydraulic, milling, mining and industrial design book (and homage to Archimides), Theatrum Machinarum Novum, first published in 1671.

The whole book is online at the Cornell University Kinesmatic Models for Design Digital Library website - you will find the 150-odd pages of illustrations in 'Part 2' from the drop down menu. Multiple resolution images are available.


George Goodall said...

I have a new comment for an old post. It seems that Boeckler's "Theatrum machinarum novum" is essentially a direct rip off of Jacopo Strada's earlier "Kunstliche abrisz allerhand wasser- wind- rosz- und handt muhlen" (1617/18). Boeckler just reprinted the older plates after changing the plate numbers! A few of the images above actually come from Ramelli's "Diverse et artificiose machine" (1588). But they're mirror images suggesting that Boeckler etched the plates by pasting Ramelli's designs onto fresh copper.

peacay said...

Thanks George, always good to see your comments, old or new. nothing is new. The new old was refashioned from the old old, eh? That's the imitative quality for art today, n'est-ce pas? Retro is the new old. (yes, it's late)

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