Toolbox saw clamps adapted to hold a wooden scale

Artist: Sheryl Boyle


This tile consists of wooden clamps on a reclaimed toolbox from Luskville, Quebec, and a wooden architectural scale gifted to Associate Professor Sheryl Boyle by a friend.


The tile is a reminder of the importance of scale in architecture. Scale is especially essential in early design stages as it establishes the feeling of a space. The tool held by the wooden clamps was once a vital part of architecture as it allowed proportions to be seen in relation to the human body. As digital technology has found its role within architecture, scale and proportional relationships to the human body are lost. Digital space offers users a continuous scale (1:500, 1:499, 1:498) by scrolling in and out, resulting in a loss of proportional scale with only a photoshopped figure able to define it. Conventional scales such as 1:500, 1:200, 1:100, 1:50 are moments that allow architects to “feel” dimension at specific cuts in the continuous digital scale. Architects often understand these conventional scales by working in physical space. The Azrieli School of Architecture & Urbanism teaches digital and traditional methods to prevent this loss of coordination between architecture and human scale.