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Early Renaissance Architecture in Italy: from Alberti to Bramante

Sapienza University of Rome via Coursera

Overview

Early Renaissance Architecture in Italy: from Alberti to Bramante

When Leon Battista Alberti completed his treatise about architecture around 1452, his initial study of texts and monuments of Antiquity was based on mathematics and geometry as a reflection of nature, with a belief that architecture was a part of a man's civil duty.

This attitude would condition the architectural principles of the early Renaissance and architects did not apply themselves to textual imitations of individual antique monuments. In Florence, they preferred to accept and articulate the rational “system” of Brunelleschi, either transforming it, like Alberti, or breaking with it in a return to tradition, like Michelozzo. In north and south Italy, the battle between innovation and resistance was increasing in strength and substance because it not only encompassed immediate questions of decorative language  (antique forms and architectural orders) but also the problems of conceiving and constructing an architecture that could replace the gothic structural membering with the continuous masonry of the Antiquity. At first, the new decoration was frequently adapted to the existing architectural system, and only later did it find a partner in the different spatial and structural conceptions that descended from Florentine exempla. The tendency to see norms and models in antique architecture, which must be rigidly replicated, first affirmed itself at the beginning of the XVI century in Rome.

Through some of the most celebrated examples of the early Renaissance architecture and the most important statements of the early Renaissance theories, the course will examine problems of the architectural spaces, technology and forms in the XV century in Italy, from Leon Battista Alberti’s to Francesco di Giorgio’s and Bramante’s proposals.

Syllabus

1. First week: Introduction
    1.1 About the course
    1.2 Florence in the early XV century
    1.3 Brunelleschi and the architectural order
    1.4 The sources of the Antiquity
2. Second week: Leon Battista Alberti (1404-1472)
    2.1 Rimini, Tempio Malatestiano
    2.2 Florence, the Rucellai Palace
    2.3 Florence, the façade of S. Maria Novella
    2.4 Mantua, the churches of S. Sebastiano and S. Andrea
3. Third week: Francesco di Giorgio Martini (1439-1501)
    3.1 Siena in the times of pope Pius II
    3.2 The Palazzo Ducale in Urbino
    3.3 Fortresses and treatises
    3.4 Churches and monasteries
4. Fourth week: Giuliano da Sangallo (1443-1516)
    4.1 The Villa of Poggio a Caiano
    4.2 Churches
    4.3 Palaces
    4.4 Fortresses
5. Fifth week: Other points of view
    5.1 Milan
    5.2 Venice
    5.3 Naples
    5.4 Rome
6. Sixth week: Bramante (1444-1514) in Milan
    6.1 Bramante from Urbino
    6.2 S. Maria presso S. Satiro
    6.3 The Pavia Cathedral and the Choir of S. Maria delle Grazie
    6.4 The Canonica and the Cloisters of S. Ambrogio
7. Seventh week: Bramante in Rome (I)
    7.1 The Cloister of S. Maria della Pace
    7.2 The Belvedere Court of the Vatican
    7.3 New St. Peter’s
    7.4 The Tempietto of S. Pietro in Montorio
8. Eight week: Bramante in Rome (II)
    8.1 Palaces
    8.2 Churches
    8.3 The Choir of S. Maria del Popolo and the Nympheum in Genazzano
    8.4 Conclusions

Taught by

Francesco Paolo Fiore

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Reviews

3.5 rating, based on 2 reviews

Start your review of Early Renaissance Architecture in Italy: from Alberti to Bramante

  • Aana
    71

    Aana completed this course, spending 3 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be medium.

  • RAFAEL MORGADO is taking this course right now.

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