7. BEKLEIDUNG AND APPEARANCE
From his belief that “it is certain that the beginning of building coincides with the beginning of textiles,” Semper turned to linguistics to confirm his theory of dressing as the essential prearchitectural condition. “Decke (cover, ceiling), Bekleidung (clothing, dressing), Schranke (barrier, gate), Zaun (hedge, fence) (similar to Saum )hem, fillet)), and many other technical expressions are not linguistic symbols applied to building at a later stage but clear indications of the textile origin of these building elements.” According to Harry Mallgrave, “Semper’s initial point was that there is a close connection between clothing and fine arts, or rather – nearly all symbols, as well as the members used in architecture, are motives borrow from the realm of costume and finery.”
Not only did this concept of Beikleidung support Semper’s notion of the primacy of textiles (and thus the wall), it also leads to his belief in “The festival apparatus – the improvised scaffold with all its splendor and frills that specifically marks the occasion for celebrating, enhances, decorates, and adorns the glorification of the feast, and is hung with tapestries, dressed with festoons and garlands, and decorated with fluttering bands and trophies – is the motive for the permanent monument, which is intended to proclaim to future generations the solemn act of event celebrated.”
As Mallgrave has noted, the monumentalization of architecture was for Semper the making permanent of the festival stage.
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