The house of Antoni van Leeuwenhoek
Commissioner: Prof. Dr. Charles van den Heuvel, Douglas Anderson
Supervision: Tijm Lanjouw
Modelling and research: Tijm Lanjouw, Douglas Anderson
Synopsis: 3D reconstruction of the house of Antoni van Leeuwenhoek in Delft
The father of micro-biology Antoni van Leeuwenhoek worked and lived most of his life at a building called ‘Het Gulden Hoofd’ in the Hyppolitusbuurt in Delft. As this house does not exist anymore, the spatial context of van Leeuwenhoek’s famous discoveries has completely been lost. It is interesting that the Gulden Hoofd was a modestly sized house, and based on van Leeuwenhoek's descriptions of it, his lab or work room was one of the smallest spaces in his house. This contradicts depictions of van Leeuwenhoek at work, which commonly show him in a spacious laboratory. The reconstruction was intended to recontextualise and visualize the scholar and his work.
In this pilot project, a rough reconstruction of the architectural layout was made, based on sketches by J.H. Geertzenwijk, building historian. A detailed reconstruction of the laboratory and other spaces were intended to be part of a future follow-up study.