Premio COACV 1999-2000/1999-2000
Publicaciones, trabajos de investigación y tesis doctorales/Publications, research papers and PhD Theses
Mínguez, arquitecto del s. XVIII; un modelo de campanario
José Minguez, 18th century architect; a bell-tower model
Francisco Juan Vidal
is a conviction that the PhD thesis of an architect should use DRAWING as
the basic means of expression, analysis and research, in the same way that
an ‘arts’ researcher uses words or a ‘science’ researcher uses
experiments. The fact that in this case the doctorand is a lecturer in the
Architectural Graphic Expression department of the Polytechnic University
of Valencia increases the coherence of this argument, if such a thing were
possible. Consequently this research was of an eminently graphical nature
from the start.
The subject matter falls within the field of Valencia’s Architectural Heritage and centres on the study of the local bell-towers. The specific subject of research is a ‘model’ of bell-tower that was built in Valencia at the end of the 17th and beginning of the 18th century and in every respect is one of the region’s most characteristic and truly vernacular architectural types.
Prior to this research, ‘Valencian bell-towers’ had been little studied and the few approaches to the subject had either been undertaken from the point of view of art history or covered the entire building, the church or convent as a whole, of which the bell-tower was merely an appendix. There were practically no studies from an architectural viewpoint that specifically approached this singular feature. As a result, the study covers a bibliographical void in the field of Valencia’s most traditional architectural typology.
The research focused on approaching a knowledge of bell-towers through the work of a single architect. Its scope was limited to reaching an understanding of the architecture of a ‘colleague’ from the past through rigorous examination of his work. The subject of study was the figure of José Mínguez (Cascante 1682-Valencia 1750) and the five exemplary bell-towers he built (Chelva, Foyos, San Valero in Ruzafa, San Lorenzo in Valencia and Campanar [Ruzafa and Campanar are now within Valencia]). This outstanding architect lived in an ideal social context at an opportune moment in history and enjoyed unique opportunities to become an indisputable key figure in the architectural evolution of the Valencian bell-towers of the time.
The method used was an analysis of the dimensions, geometry, proportions and distribution of these five bell-towers through drawings, using a structuralist approach. The starting point was the bell-towers themselves, measuring and drawing their walls, arches, vaults, stairs, terraces, roofs etc. directly from the models. The procedure employed in their study was graphic analysis. The result led to certain objective conclusions, drawn from the coincidences and progressive evolutions detected by the analysis. As a corollary, these were synthesized in an ideal ‘José Mínguez style’ bell-tower project which was then tested, thus attaining the initial objective: understanding the architecture of these singular bell-towers.
CONTENTS OF THE PhD THESIS:
CHAPTER I: AN APPROACH TO THE EVOLUTION OF THE BELL-TOWERS
CHAPTER II: JOSÉ MÍNGUEZ, 18TH CENTURY ARCHITECT
This chapter contributes some significant and hitherto unpublished facts about Mínguez’s life and some of his works.
CHAPTER III: SOME PRECURSORY BELL-TOWERS AND SUPERSTRUCTURES
The main directions in which these towers were evolving during the last decades of the 17th century and the first decades of the 18th century are identified and the known historical facts are compiled. The formal features of selected examples are examined briefly and their possible mutual influences and their reflection in Mínguez’s projects are identified.
CHAPTER IV: AN ANALYSIS OF JOSÉ MÍNGUEZ’S BELL-TOWERS
For the sake of objectivity, the analytical process is repeated uniformly for each. The majority of the analyses are conducted in graphic form.
CHAPTER V: JOSÉ MÍNGUEZ’S BELLTOWERS: A COMPARATIVE STUDY; A
Complete drawings for a ‘Mínguez style’ bell-tower. The creation of this theoretical bell-tower demonstrates an understanding of his architecture and of having learnt to control, proportion and dimension it objectively and rigorously. It may be affirmed that this design exercise achieves the fundamental objective of the research, of which the ‘project’ constitutes a very clear demonstration.
CHAPTER VI: THE BELL-TOWERS OF THE SECOND HALF OF THE 18TH
CENTURY: THE INFLUENCE OF JOSÉ MÍNGUEZ
CONTENTS OF THE BOOK
The historical and design evolution of bell-towers in the Valencia Region. This subject was approached in part of chapter I of the thesis and is also briefly mentioned in the introductory chapter to the book.
The design problems of 18th century bell-towers. This is taken from the preliminary considerations in chapter IV of the thesis and approached in the second chapter of the book with the addition of some new material.
The life and work of José Minguez, taken from part of chapter II of the thesis and covered in chapter III of the book.
This book, which publishes a fragment of a work of research, signifies the recognition of subjects that have hitherto received little attention: a brilliant period in the history of Valencian architecture, a remarkable architect of the past and a singular, emblematic architectural feature which is characteristic of the truly vernacular tradition of Valencia’s architectural heritage.
Publicación: "Los campanarios de José
Mínguez". Ediciones Generales de la Construcción. Colección
Biblioteca T.C. Valencia 1700-1750 /
Book: "The belltowers of José Míngez". Ediciones Generales de la Construcción. Collection: Biblioteca T.C.
Francisco Juan Vidal
De la Tesis Doctoral /
Gráfica Arquitectónica de la UPV /
Fecha de lectura/Viva: