Vitruvius Without Text: The Biography of a Book
ETH Zürich & gta Verlag, 2022
‘De architectura’, written by Vitruvius in the first century BCE, is revered as the first treatise on architectural theory. Since its Renaissance resurrection, the enigmatic text has been adapted, refined, and redefined in subsequent iterations. ‘Vitruvius Without Text’ bypasses critical interpretations to focus on the material history of the printed editions that appeared throughout Europe. It surveys over 100 editions from 1486 to the present, tracing the power of the printed page in establishing the Roman author as an authority. By focusing on the impact of the physical objects of the Vitruvian canon, it highlights how the history of printing and architecture intersect to form a symbiotic relationship.