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ARTH 270 Icons of Architectural History

  • Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2:45-5:30 pm 
  • Instructor: Dr. Nicola Pezolet

This introductory survey course will present a wide selection of iconic buildings and influential architectural theories, beginning in the Early Modern period and ending in the contemporary era of capitalist globalization. This course will pay particular attention to the ways architects, landscape architects and urban planners have responded to their immediate physical surroundings (such as local geography, climate, etc.) as well as to various fields of human knowledge and practice (building technology, natural sciences, economics, religion and spirituality, philosophy, history, etc.) While necessarily selective, this course, in light of recent scholarly developments in architecture and art history, will be more or less global in its scope. Weekly presentations will be organized as a series of case studies, and will alternate between different world regions. This will help us to acknowledge mutual influences and points of contacts between different building cultures, as well as to better understand the increasingly global circulation of architectural knowledge and expertise. The goal of the course is to develop the ability to understand iconic buildings not only as the work of a single architect-author, but as part of the larger social, economic and cultural fabric of their time. Students will also work on acquiring the appropriate architectural terminology and to develop the ability to present critical judgments in written form. Each week, students will also be asked to read a text written by an architect, as well as a secondary source.

Wainwright Building, St Louis, Missouri, built 1891.
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