Proportion and Harmony

12th century Christian geometric art

by David Clayton on April 15, 2014

Some readers will already be aware of the Christian tradition of geometric and patterned art (see longer articles in the section Liturgy, Number, Proportion on the archive site). This was an adaptation of the patterned geometric art that we see in the pre-Christian classical period. TMC is, in a small way. The Way of Beauty class, [...]


An Ordinary Street in the London Suburb of Hanwell

by David Clayton on November 22, 2013

After the last view of Nashua, NH mainstreet here are some views of Hanwell in west London. They were taken over the summer when I was on my way to Heathrow airport. When I teach the class on harmony and proportion in architect at Thomas More College, we do study the traditional principles as manifested [...]


Beauty Comes in Threes

by David Clayton on June 17, 2013

Look at this photograph of St Clare’s in Assisi, which is top in the series of photographs below, and at the Basilica of St Francis of Assisi in Santa Fe New Mexico, which is second. The first is 13th century and second was completed in 1886.   If one takes in each case the lower [...]


Traditional proportion can be incorporated into the design of just about anything once you know how. Here is an example a rockery (as we say in England) or ‘rock garden’, as I think Americans refer to it. It is part of the developing garden at the Thomas More College future campus at Groton, Massachusetts. We [...]

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Take a look at these photographs of a farmhouse in Groton, Massachusetts. This is a 19th century house on the site that eventually will become the new campus for Thomas More College of Liberal Arts. Look first at the gable end in which there are three windows, one on each floor. Notice how the first [...]


And how a ‘marvel of Renaissance verse’ describes precisely this, by Corey French. This article started out as a simple description of a country house that I visited on a recent trip to Britain. It is in North Wales and is called Bodysgallen Hall.  I was introduced to the house by a friend who took [...]

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Geoff Yovanovic is a young architectural intern (with an architecture degree from the University of Miami who came to our Way of Beauty summer program last year. He recently attended a course of proportion run by the ICAA (The Institute of Classical Architecture called Theory of Proportion: A Perennial Pathway of Beauty. What he described [...]

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The Importance of Seeing Paintings in Context

by David Clayton on September 23, 2011

I would like to draw readers’ attention to a piece in The Catholic Herald written by Fr Anthony Symondson. He has reviewed the exhibition Devotion by Design which is at the National Gallery in London and which runs until October 2nd. The exhibition is unusual in that, commendably, altarpieces are displayed along with simulated altars so that visitors [...]