maitrise architectural model
Architectural models as these were made by apprentices or master craftsman to apply for a title by their respective guild. In France these craftsmen were known as the 'Compagnons du Devoir'. They would start their careers by travelling around France, sometimes trough Europe, and taking temporary places in workshops throughout the country. Each time they would learn new things and materialize these in ever more complex scale models. Crucial in their training was the understanding of proportion. This science was taken very seriously and based on centuries of transcriptions going back as far as the Egyptians. Carpenters would use this knowledge in their designs and typically make studies of roofmodels in various shapes and sizes. Before they could end their educational travels and settle down in a city they were obliged to finally deliver a masterpiece or Piece de Maitrise. And if approved they got the right to open their own shop. This early 19th century softwood model has elegant geometric lines with golden cut proportions. It has a modern abstract feel to it and in the meantime its warm patina shows its history.