The on-line transmission from the flight2017-10-17 16:15:44
Lecture in Royal Castle
Could a lecture about Warsaw through the eyes of Classic painter Canaletto take place in a modern room? Lecture conducted by Professor Andrzej Rottermund in the Great Hall of the Royal Castle. The classes at the Royal Castle prove that the core of a lecture is not simply sharing academic knowledge; it is also about stimulating emotional and rational structures of the brain. To attend this lecture, students are required to wear elegant clothing.
The Royal Castle
THE CASTLE AND THE CITY’S ROOTS
It is generally thought that today’s Warsaw emerged out of the growth of the Old and New Towns. But perhaps it all happened quite differently.
The stronghold tower, a distinct fragment of the city walls and the initial the seat of the Castellan in Trojden’s time, rebuilt as the ducal Curia Maior, and later as a castle that was the seat of Royalty, slowly evolved into the centre around which, independently of the existence of the Old and New towns, in time emerged a distinct magnate city – today’s Warsaw the capital.
In order for the solar clock to indicate exact time independently of the period of the year, its arm, whose shadow indicates the position of the sun, should be leaning and directed at the stellar north pole, toward the Polar Star. A clock arm thus positioned is called a polos. Zygmunt’s column does not meet these requirements, as it stands vertically. But if we look attentively under our feet and see its shadow, we are a step away from creating a solar clock.
Making a solar clock by means of aerial photos (a projection of the column’s shadow moving against the background of the Castle Square) required, on every hour of true solar time, from dawn to dusk, 15 successive flights during one day. Each trip required flying exactly over the column, with a degree of spatial precision of within one metre, and releasing the shutter at that exact moment. The shadows from selected photos were superimposed to form a generalised image of the Castle Square.
It is in this manner that Zygmunt’s Solar Clock – perhaps the next symbol of Warsaw – came into being. It measures its own time, in keeping with the laws of nature, not that of man. The square fills with people and then empties to its rhythm. For almost 400 years, it has projected the finesse of the statue’s architectural form with the royal figure standing at its top. Irrespective of the direction from which it is observed and the corresponding projection of the shadow, this form is enchanting in its beauty and composition. Few monuments have such an excellent architectural form.
The Royal Square in Warsaw photographed at the very beginning of Polish presidency in the European Union. The photo shows a flowery carpet with the Polish Presidency logo.