Thursday, February 12, 2015

Quatrefoils, Gablets and the Pavilion

I've missed seeing this.
Everyone is excited that the last of the scaffolding is coming down.
Removing scaffolding is a surprisingly noisy undertaking.
The results are worth it.
The refurbished brick is stunning, as are the niches and windows.
I have received another tutorial this week.  It involved our very own gablets.
You might remember that ornamental designs in gables are Eastlake in architecture.
I detoured through the Maeser neighborhood this morning.  Many of the homes were built at the same time as the tabernacle and carry an Eastlake flavor.
The tabernacle was built about thirty years after the pioneers arrived in Provo.  By the 1880s, the designs of Charles Eastlake were in vogue, and of course, Provo pioneers liked to stay in step as much as the next guy.
Some of the gable ornaments are very simple.
Some are quite complicated.
The center design is a representation of a shield.  Notice the floral designs, too.
The ground floor of the temple will be Eastlake in design.  The second level will be more Victorian.
I found a picture of a Charles Eastlake door handle.  Notice the quatrefoil pattern in the center of the knob.
Quatrefoils are prominent in Gothic architecture.  The four curves are symbolic.  In some cultures, the quatrefoil represents the four parts of the earth.
The quatrefoil can also represent the four Gospels.
Our new temple has four quatrefoils.
This symbol on our temple could indicate spreading the gospel to the four parts of the earth.
There is more symbolism which is important for us to understand.  This is a fleur de lis, a fancy one.
The fleur de lis carries a lot of symbolism and could be a stylized iris.  Notice the similarities between the fleur de lis and the the petals of the iris.
Some cultures accept that the fleur de lis is designed from a lily.  Both the iris and lily represent purity.  They can also represent the love of God.
Several of the new temple windows have a fleur de lis.  This one is shown above a leaded arch-design in the glass.
This art glass design is at several places on the ground level.  This particular window is just west of the south entrance.  Local artists are building a stained glass transom for this south entrance which will bear the words, "Holiness To The Lord."
I've had a difficult time photographing any of these windows.  I hoped to see it up close on the east side, but the scaffolding was not cooperating this morning.  My zoom lens captured this from Second South.
Notice the abstract lily or iris design at the base of this window.
The gable windows also have several of these abstract floral designs.  We can see a pretty window, or we can think of the symbolism and perhaps remember God.
This pattern has a fleur de lis at the top of a floral design, and a shield below a banner at the bottom.  The banner could remind us of an ensign, which is appropriate for a temple.
Symbols increase the beauty of the windows.
While I can see an abstract lily here, another person might see a lotus.
The lotus can be associated with spiritual awakening and knowledge.
Be patient with me while we go through a little exercise.  It looks like someone was having fun with the design of a lotus.
Can you see how someone with a compass could go from the many-petalled lotus to this design?
Another step which could be taken is to move to this sun design.
This could easily bring us to the sunstones on the Nauvoo Temple.
Another artist might choose to represent the rays of the sun with fan pleats.
This would, of course, bring us back to the new Provo Temple, and our favorite gablets.
Several blog readers have pointed out more symbolism.  They see a beehive in the design of these arches which grace each gable.
Arches point our minds and hearts to God.
This is why the tabernacle is becoming a temple, so we can look up.
The morning saw a lot of action at the pavilion.
We are seeing a copper delivery.
Red ladders helped out.
The copper was neatly fitted into a gutter.
There was some human involvement while the copper was marked.
Our friend Brian Olson created this image to help us understand.
This morning my camera spied forms for the porch around the pavilion.
Quartzitic sandstone now covers the base of two gate posts near the pavilion.
The south ramp is almost ready for traffic, except for one big bump.
The west access is not as far along as the south driveway.
The gardens are definitely progressing.
Masons have been working for months to finish the planters with sandstone.
I'm hopeful that the next time I visit the site, the east scaffolding will be completely dismantled.
Paving stones are lining up along Center Street.
Everything is coming into place.
The temple seems to be emerging from its scaffolding like a phoenix.


Chad said...

Very interesting symbolism!
I've been wondering about the stairs... It seems that all the stairs (going to the temple exits, all the stairs from the west gardens, and as far as I can tell the stairs moving from the grounds to the garage) haven't been poured and there is just exposed rebar. Do you know if there is a reason for this? I know the Brigham City temple and Rexburg all poured stairs during the winter that later were ripped up and repoured. Are they waiting for spring and warmer temperatures? If so, why wait for warmer temps only for the stairs and not all the other concrete work? Thanks!

Julie Markham said...

My personal opinion is that they just haven't gotten to the stairs yet. During the winter I asked about why something hadn't been finished, I don't remember what it was, but the answer was simply that "they hadn't gotten to it yet." But I'll see what I can learn.

VK said...

I just found your blog this morning and have quickly used up 2 hours of my precious time. You are enjoyable to read with your wit and content. Thanks for going into such detail about so many elements of design.
My parents both grew up in Provo - one a few blocks to the west on 2nd South, the other several blocks to the east on 2nd North, so their memories from the 1930's and early 40's of meetings where all the kids from Provo sat up in the balcony while parents sat below are fun to listen to.
My husband and I are moving to Provo for a mission in July and will love being able to se this all first hand. In the meantime I will now enjoy updates through your blog.

Julie Markham said...

As an infant, I lived just two blocks from the tabernacle, but while I was still very young, my parents moved to Idaho where I was raised. I returned to Provo as a grandmother, very surprised at what a wonderful place this is to live. Watching this temple progress has been really fun. Perhaps it will be a little safer and easier to see by this summer when you arrive.

The Parks' said...

Thank you for sharing your art and amazing insights! I'm the "Newsletter Specialist" for our ward and our Relief Society President emailed this post to me. Are you okay with me posting your photos and comments on our ward newsletter? Of course I would site your blog as the resource. :)

Julie Markham said...

Thanks for your kind words. Of course you can use my photos.

The Parks' said...

Thanks so much Julie!!