GSD Course Bulletin - Spring 2012
This term's information was last refreshed on 12 MAY 2015 14:53:34.
Courses taught by Christine Smith
04321: Rome and St. Peters (HIS 0432100)
Lecture - 4 credits
Monday Wednesday 8:30 - 10:00 Gund 318
The art and architecture of Rome from Antiquity to Modernity with particular attention to the Vatican, where the layering of material artifacts from successive historical periods provides an uninterrupted record of more than two thousand years. Development of the Vatican site establishes a continuous narrative framework around which building in Rome can be organized; and contextualizes the cultural, artistic, and political aspirations and values of the Ancient, Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, and Modern city.
The course is organized around four historic spectacles – the Emperor Augustus’ funeral (14 A.D.), Constantine the Great’s triumphal procession (312), a liturgical procession for the Feast the Assumption (1300), and the Consecration of New Saint Peter’s (1626) – imagined as four walks through Rome highlighting the city’s evolving cultural and urban character. The first half of the course covers Antiquity to the Renaissance while the second looks in greater detail at specific projects from the Renaissance to the twentieth century. Topics in the first part include the growth and decline of the ancient Roman city, the creation of new architectural forms and urban meanings in response to the Christianization of Empire, and the practice of pilgrimage as urban experience. The second part focuses on the style and meaning of those works of art, architecture, and urbanism which distinguish Rome and the Vatican today such as Michelangelo’s Sistine Ceiling, Bramante’s design for New St. Peter’s, and Bernini’s sculpture for the rebuilt basilica. In general, the approach of the first half emphasizes the historical and cultural foundations which constitute the idea of Rome and utilizes primary sources while the second takes up more theoretical issues of representation and reception.
Outcomes: This course, while open to all students, is designed primarily for students who will visit Rome as participants in GSD 2308, which immediately follows. It aims, therefore, to provide a working knowledge of: 1) the historical topography and infrastructure of the city; 2) about 150 of the principal artistic and architectural monuments in Rome; and 3) the cultural characteristics of its various historical periods. Given these aims, the course emphasizes working with maps, memorizing works of art and architecture, and understanding the relation between historical/cultural contexts and built work.
04350: Michelangelo: Precedents, Innovations, Influence (HIS 0435000)
Lecture - 4 credits
Tuesday Thursday 10:00 - 11:30 Gund 505
An exploration of Italian Renaissance architecture and urbanism through the persona of Michelangelo as witness, agent, and inspiration. We look at architecture and urbanism in Florence, Rome, and Venice from about 1400 to 1600 as it formed, articulated, and reflected the creative achievements of this Renaissance genius. The course engages building typologies such as the villa, the palace, and the church, reviews the theory and practice of urban space-making, and evaluates the authority of the Classical past in the creation of new work. Particular emphasis on Michelangelo’s creative process and on his drawings. A workshop on drawing techniques for ink and chalk may be scheduled.
We begin with Medicean Florence under Lorenzo the Magnificent and with the Early Renaissance legacy of Brunelleschi, Michelozzo, and Alberti. Following Michelangelo’s footsteps, we move to High Renaissance Rome, with the achievements of Bramante, Raphael and Michelangelo himself. Returning to Florence, we investigate the Mannerist experimentation of Michelangelo and others in the 1520s and consider the acceptance and rejection of this idiom by Giulio Romano in Mantua and Jacopo Sansovino in Venice. Michelangelo’s mature and late styles in Counter- Reformation Rome and his influence on later architects conclude the course.