The Materiality of Stone: Explorations in Landscape Phenomenology
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This book investigates the sensuous material qualities of stone--from golden honeycombed limestone, to frozen waves of Cambrian sandstone. Tactile sensations, sonorous qualities, color, and visual impressions are all shown to play a previously unrecognized yet vital part in understanding the power of prehistoric monuments, from Neolithic temples to Bronze Age rock carvings, in relation to their landscapes. Tilley breaks new ground in interpreting human experience in a sensuous way, rather than through an abstract analytical gaze. He leaves no stone unturned as he also considers how spaces and settings are interpreted in relation to artifacts and places that were deeply meaningful to the people who inhabited them and remain no less evocative today. In its innovative approach to understanding human experience, The Materiality of Stone is a major contribution to the field of material culture studies and the study of prehistory.
better by taking on board the phenomenological implications of synaesthesia: that sensing the world involves a continual interwining of the various ways in which we perceive it. Anyway, in a purely visual description of a landscape, or in a photograph of it, we do not arrive back at that which we experienced. The relationship between an act of thinking and its object cannot capture the richness of our lived encounter with the world. It is necessarily reductive and transformative. In a text all we
and presence (Figs 2.7, 2.8). Giant axe-shaped menhirs may thus have smaller axe forms protruding out from the rock matrix. These smooth rock inclusions occur on nine of the fifteen recorded stones in the group (60%). On the present-day coastline, rocks can be seen where the action of – 46 – Sprouting Rhizomes and Giant Axes the sea is currently eroding these smooth axe-shaped inclusions out of the coarse surrounding granite and completely eroded-out examples of these ‘axes’ can be picked up on
a slender stone just 2.3 m high. Each of these pillars has a distinctive form and profile and the same stone may look utterly different according to from which direction it is seen. The irregularity and mutable shapes of these pillars contrast markedly with the axe-shaped stones of Bas Léon. The directional orientation of the long or broader faces of the stones also differs greatly, with some being orientated N–S, others W–E or NW–SE. The feature that all share is that they are squat and broad at
different in character from rooms 2 and 3. The external walls consist of well-fitted orthostats with lines of horizontal coursing blocks above. In front of these there is a semicircular arrangement of slabs and a low screen or curtain wall dividing this room off from the court apart from a central entranceway with a paved slab off which one steps down into this space. What is being created here is a well-defined roughly circular space within a pre-existing apsoidal space, demarcated on all sides.
pointing, unusually, across it, together with low numbers of scattered cup marks. There is little sense of any structure or order apart from the opposition between most of the feet moving down the rock and the boats across it. Panel B (Fig 4.18). Here at least three boats traverse the rock. Two are upside down, seen from below. Here a group of four ambiguous axe or lur designs create a unique signature. These overlap with pairs of matched left and right feet pointing downslope (Fig 4.19). The