Cenotaph to Newton, BOULEE, PROJECT, 1784 AD

Cenotaph to Newton would likely be one of my favorite projects, had it been constructed. It is a project to explore the potential and possibility of architecture. The monument is to honor British scientist Sir Isaac Newton, though he is buried in another location. The design exudes a clear symmetrical organization radiating around the central focus. The project exemplifies the SUBLIME, inspiring a feeling of awe through scale, function or effect. There are a multiplicity of ways sublime can be considered in various projects. Independent of sublime, the building can also exemplify a MICROCOSM, firstly as a sphere encompassed as the primary interior space. The section best reveals monumental scale.

Image 1: Cenotaph to Newton at night

At night (see background of image 1), one comes in from the darkness entering to an exceedingly bright light. After allowing eyes to adjust and come into focus, one begins to understand the vastness of scale and the one point light in the center, symbolizing the sun. Looking at the section, scale is vast in relation to human scale, the tiny figures at the bottom of the interior. During the day, the interior is ominous and dark (image 2). The interior ceiling represents the celestial sky as light penetrating through openings in the ceiling. The idea of an eclipse is encapsulated within the building is sublime. The effect of changing day to night and reverse, creates a feeling of awe enhanced by scale.

Image 2: Cenotaph to Newton during the day

Media Attributions

  • View of the Cenotaph to Newton (Night View) is licensed under a Public Domain license
  • View of the Cenotaph to Newton (Day View)


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Exploring Architecture and Landscape Architecture Copyright © by Aimee Moore is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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