Didactic Design

1993 Words8 Pages
This essay will explore the significance of didactic design in the Early Christian (ca 300- 600) and Romanesque ( circa 800-1200 ) periods, as well as how their designs influenced and contribute to modern product design. Four designs from the Early Christian and Romanesque time periods will be discussed: The Apse in St Martin at Fuentidueña in Spain, the stained glass window known as Notre Dame de la Belle Verrière in Chartres Cathedral France, the Plate of Paternus and an Early Christian ring. Modern products will also be discussed to show their relationship with the medieval didactic designs, and how Early Christian and Romanesque design influenced them.

The use of Didactic design was very useful in the medieval time, from discussing the
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The Notre Dame de la Belle Verrière is one of the earliest European stained glass windows, it was created between 1137 and 1160 and survived the fire of 1194 that burnt its original church (Aubrey,2013). Because it survived it was considered holy, it is also a very beautiful window and therefore was used in the Chartres Cathedral that was built in the Gothic style some years after the fire.( Aubrey, 2013). La Belle Verrière still exists in Chartres cathedral and is surrounded by Gothic stained glass pieces to fill the space of the enormous Gothic windows (because it was made for a much smaller Romanesque styled window) (Frankl,1963). It depicts Mary and child, as centered, front facing figures that are also looking straight ahead, which are all very typical Romanesque stained glass characteristics. It is made with the Potmetal technique, a method that combines metal oxides with hot glass to create brilliant colours (Jones, 2008). Blue and red are the colours that were often used in the early stained glass windows, which, is also mainly seen in this piece (Aubrey, 2013). Mary is shown very royally with a crown-like “nimbus” surrounding her head, she is seated on a throne with Jesus on her lap. This didactic representation of Mary and child illustrates the use of biblical figures in stained…show more content…
Modern product designers have taken on this ideal of the medieval didactic designs, and used it to create products that physically fully embody the purpose of their function, as well as influencing (ie. didactic) the user. Like the Solar puff, which fully displays its purpose in its shape, materials, ability and overall
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