Before steel. The introduction of structural iron and its consequences
Mario Rinke & Joseph Schwartz (editors)
Steel is one of the most important building materials of our time, and is closely related to notios of “modern” construction or modern architecture in general. This book aims not only to illustrate the beginnings of steel’s usage as a building material; it also endeavours to show the theoretical, practical, formal, and cultural consequences of these beginnings 200 years ago.
The 19th century marks the phase of final separation for the disciplines of structural engineering and architecture. Iron may not be the sole impetus, but it is at least a catalyst – even today, and is, therefore, a significant factor in the development of the engineering-architecture relationship.
“Before Steel” looks critically at the many-layered connections between architecture and engineering, and at the dramatically changing way in which the disciplines understand themselves; all of this will be contextualized by viewing the usage of iron, the new structural building material, during the industrialization period. For this purpose, many notable authors from various disciplines contribute their view.
Zurich 2010, 16cm x 24cm, 200 illustrations, 236pp. Hardcover