By Philip Wilkinson
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The Romans painted the walls of their houses in this way, and medieval churches were full of murals. Many were frescoes, where artists applied the color to wet plaster, which was then left to dry to a hard, permanent finish. PLASTERING A CORNICE Ornate plaster cornices like the one above, from an 18th-century house, were built in stages. First, the plasterer nailed wooden laths to the wall. Next he applied a coat of coarse plaster, made from lime and containing animal hair to bind the mixture together.
This screen lets in the fresh air and casts cool, dappled shadows inside the building. The wooden shutters can be closed at night and when the temperature is low. These jalis are in the town of Sanaa, in Yemen. Jalis are popular in Muslim countries, where their abstract patterns are an important way of decorating buildings. Wrought-iron outer frame Ornate wroughtiron catch This glass is not the original glass – the window was reglazed in the 1930s SHUTTING UP SHOP Shutters are useful in hot countries.
ABSTRACT PATTERNS Modern glass artists often use the rich colors of stained glass to make striking abstract designs. This example is in Thula, in Yemen, where the strong sunlight throws colored patterns through the window and across the building. 51 Finishing off W of a building is complete, and the windows and doors have been fitted, a number of decorative craftspeople Leaf designs of the 18th century take over. Plasterers smooth cast in plaster the walls, and often use their skills to decorate ceilings and cornices.
BUILDING (DK Eyewitness Books) by Philip Wilkinson
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