Albrecht Dürer, Istitutionum Geometricarum

Albrecht Dürer, Istitutionum Geometricarum, Arnhem, 1605 (RV C.III.30)

This is the fourth edition of the Latin version of Unterweisung der Messung, the four books on measurement by Albrecht Dürer, printed for the first time in his workshop in Nuremberg in 1525.
The work stems from a larger project by Dürer aimed at creating a book in his language about art and painting, which would incorporate the knowledge necessary for the training of a painter, a project he never completed, but from which various treatises were born, among which this one. The master wished to offer German artists and craftsmen texts which would lay down the theoretical foundations and practical applications of their work. This desire emerged on his first trip to Italy in 1494-1495, where he was able to see first-hand the flourishing of reflections on the arts, the means of representation and the proliferation of writings on these topics: the basis of new Renaissance art. All this was sorely missing in the Germanic states: the preface declares that "... till now in our German countries many able bodied young people have been directed towards painting, though instructed solely through daily practice, without the inculcation of the foundations of their art."