About the Curve
THE CURVE IN ARCHITECTURE
The Little Secret
in Ancient Architecture
When you think about the magnificent Parthenon, what’s the first thing that comes to your mind? It’s probably the majestic rows of upright columns, all in a straight line. But there is a hidden secret to these lines that casual observation cannot reveal. These rows of straight columns are actually not straight. They are gently curved. But why would the ancient Greek architects design the Parthenon in this way? What secret did they know that we do not? They were aware of an optical phenomenon called barrel distortion which is caused by the natural curve of our eyes, and makes flat features actually appear curved. So when they created this wonderful masterpiece, they built it slightly curved and elevated in the center to make it appear straight in our eyes. The Taj Mahal is another architectural marvel that holds this hidden secret. Its four towers lean slightly outward by 5 degrees, yet appear perfectly upright. These two have become symbols of grace, balance, and symmetry, and are among many other examples of how master designers in the East and the West designed for our naturally curved eyes.
THE CURVE IN BIOLOGY
Demand a Curve
Did you know that there is a viewing experience better than what your flat screen TV is giving you? With a curved TV, you can see so much more, with so much more of an immersive effect. And the reason has to do with the biological structure of our eyes. There are two types of very sophisticated photoreceptors in our retinas called rods and cones. Our cones convey the glory of color and are responsible for our central field of view of about 30 degrees, while our rods perceive motion and are responsible for our visual field outside of this 30 degree field of view, otherwise known as our peripheral vision.
Curved screens provide a field of view much wider than 30 degrees, stimulating the rods in our eyes to give us a superior sense of immersion and activating our senses to perceive amazing panoramas rivaled only by the natural vistas of our great outdoors. This is why curved screens provide the ultimate premium viewing experience.
THE CURVE IN CINEMA
The First Curved Screen
Do you know where the world’s first curved screen made its appearance? It was at a theater in New York in 1952, and it was designed by the film industry using a novel process that involved specially designed screen materials. In other words, even 60 years ago, designers and producers understood the immersive value of the curved screen.
They knew that the viewing experience was truly premium, going beyond what flat can convey. And for years, it was a premium entertainment experience for which we paid top dollar precisely because we couldn’t relive it at home. Until Samsung introduced the World’s first Curved UHD TV.
Drawing of the theatre installation