Disappear Here

Images of Perspective from the RIBA Collections

From the Renaissance to the present day, perspective has been a constant in architectural writing and illustration, linking the disciplines of art, architecture and mathematics.

Perspective drawing has been applied to the art of building for centuries and used as a tool to evoke illusory architectural spaces: a way of seeing which became a way of building. By translating three-dimensional space onto a two-dimensional surface, it has become the ultimate quest to depict realistic impressions of a complex world.

Sam Jacob Studio was invited by the RIBA to draw on the RIBA Collections for the exhibition Disappear Here. This gallery presents a range of images used as research material and inspiration for Disappear Here, as well as in the exhibition itself.

Highlights include John Smythson’s early 17th century Jacobean designs for Bolsover Castle; Hans Vredeman de Vries’ imaginary series of vistas and interiors from Perspective (1604); Étienne-Louis Boullée’s visionary design for a neo-classical cathedral and one of the many colourful perspectives from the office of R. Seifert & Partners.

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48 items
Barbican Centre, Silk Street, City of London: perspective sectionRIBA92181

 
Barbican Estate, City of London: perspective showing some of the garden layout including the pyramidal conservatory and ornamental water gardensRIBA94418

 
Crystal Palace, Hyde Park, London: perspective view of the nave and the south transeptRIBA12309


Demonstration of Albrecht Durer's Perspective Machine (Lens Perspectiva)RIBA38296

 
Design for a ceiling with columns and coffered archesRIBA35684

 
Design for a conservatory for a property in Cadogan Square, London: interior perspectiveRIBA36723


Design for a hotel in Nigeria: perspective viewRIBA35893

 
Design for a stage set and proscenium arch for a performance of the opera 'La Clemenza di Tito', Act 1 Scene 1, Lisbon Opera House (Opera do Tejo or Phoenix Opera): perspective view of an atrium with a palace seen beyondRIBA35668

 
Design for Abadan International Airport, Abadan: airside perspectiveRIBA94144


Design for an eight-sided fortress for an ideal city: half-plan and sectionRIBA85658

 
Design for Beckenham and Penge Grammar School for Boys (later Langley Park School for Boys): perspective view showing a corridor exhibition space with classroomsRIBA31685

 
Design for Rowlett Street Housing, Poplar, London: south-east axonometric projection drawingRIBA53317


Design for the Finsbury Estate, Finsbury, London: perspective view of the library from St John StreetRIBA36058

 
Design for the interior decoration of the RMS Queen Elizabeth for Cunard White Star: isometric projection indicating a decorative flooring scheme for a deck entranceRIBA31226

 
Design for the library, Gray's Inn, High Holborn, London, for the Honourable Society of Gray's Inn: perspective view of the reading roomRIBA41602


Design for Wilton House, Wilton: perspective view of the house and groundsRIBA35035

 
Designs for an 1/8 inch perspective grid: planRIBA97145

 
Designs for an 1/8 inch perspective grid: planRIBA97146


Designs for Bolsover Castle, Bolsover, Derbyshire: plan and frontal perspective view of the fountain in the garden featuring manneken-pis sculptures and a central pedestal incorporating lion's head masksRIBA29189

 
Designs for New Court, Christ's College, Cambridge: perspective showing the pre-cast concrete componentsRIBA92531

 
Examples of perspective delineationRIBA18974


Foundling housing scheme (Brunswick Centre), Brunswick Square, Bloomsbury, London: cross-section of a residential flatRIBA35955

 
Hans Vredeman de Vries, Perspective, part I: plate 11 (interior view with sight lines and vanishing points marked)RIBA99429

 
Hans Vredeman de Vries, Perspective, part I: plate 28 (complex quadratura constructions incorporating human figures)RIBA99467


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