About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 8366-8375
Publication year: 2017
ISBN: 978-84-697-3777-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2017.0551

Conference name: 9th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 3-5 July, 2017
Location: Barcelona, Spain

LEARNING ABOUT RENAISSANCE ARCHITECTURE IN THE XXI CENTURY. INTEGRATING HISTORY, THEORY, AND DESIGN

L.C. Pérez-Moreno, L.M. Lus-Arana

Zaragoza University, School of Engineering and Architecture (SPAIN)
The Bologna Declaration has introduced changes in universities that have required a reorganization of Architecture programs in most Architecture Schools in Spain. Thus, many programs have favored an education that focuses on professionalism in an attempt to conciliate academic and professional life. This is certainly a valid option; however, it also detracts from a humanistic understanding of the discipline that has always been integral to the discipline. Historical theory and the interpretation of the past have been a fundamental asset in architectural education, as well as an essential tool in the pedagogy of architectural design. And we believe that they may have an even more important part today, in a moment where the immediate availability of a numerous amount of architectural imagery can make it particularly difficult for students to see the deeper structures of design. Thus, it is our role to develop a methodology that shows the students of the XXI century the close relation that exists between the design principles of historical architecture and modern project strategies.

The Bologna Declaration ECTS methodology brings us an invaluable opportunity by opening new possibilities in the teaching of Classical History where lectures (T1) can be combined with seminars (T2) and studio hours (T3). This approach leaves behind traditional lecture-only courses, favoring a course structure where the concepts explained in Theory classes can be further examined by reading, and commenting on fundamental texts either from or on the studied period, and finally applied to the graphical analysis and reconstruction of seminal built examples. This is the strategy we have developed in the 2nd-year course 'Renaissance Architecture', taught at the University of Zaragoza (Spain). In it, the students have to study the social and cultural changes that took place in the Renaissance, analyzing some of the most relevant texts of the period with the criteria taught in the theoretical lectures, and then applying this knowledge to the dissection of the strategies used by those very authors in several buildings from the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. This threefold approach helps the students understand how the design of these buildings responds to the fundamental values of architecture in the studied period. Thus, they study the application of Vitruvius' 'modulus' and Brunelleschi's ‘campata’, as shown in the latter's designs for the Ospedale degli Innocenti (Florence, 1419-46), or the basilica of San Lorenzo (Florence, 1425), or the role that Alberti's De Re Aedificatoria (1450) had on the proliferation of round-plan churches in the early fifteenth century such as Bramante's Tempietto di San Pietro in Montorio (Rome, 1502). Furthermore, once they have unveiled the inner rules of these design concepts, the students are able to pose hypothesis of how the architect may have solved the problems entailed by applying them to the real building or suggest their own solutions.

This paper presents the methodology of the course, as well as some of the work produced by students, framing it within the topic ‘Higher Education Area: The Bologna Declaration and ECTS Experiences’. Its goal is to underline the success that an integrated teaching of Theory, History, and Design may have in helping students understand -and consequently, develop design strategies- in what should be an encompassing understanding of Architecture, both as a discipline and also as a profession.
@InProceedings{PEREZMORENO2017LEA,
author = {P{\'{e}}rez-Moreno, L.C. and Lus-Arana, L.M.},
title = {LEARNING ABOUT RENAISSANCE ARCHITECTURE IN THE XXI CENTURY. INTEGRATING HISTORY, THEORY, AND DESIGN},
series = {9th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN17 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-697-3777-4},
issn = {2340-1117},
doi = {10.21125/edulearn.2017.0551},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/edulearn.2017.0551},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {3-5 July, 2017},
year = {2017},
pages = {8366-8375}}
TY - CONF
AU - L.C. Pérez-Moreno AU - L.M. Lus-Arana
TI - LEARNING ABOUT RENAISSANCE ARCHITECTURE IN THE XXI CENTURY. INTEGRATING HISTORY, THEORY, AND DESIGN
SN - 978-84-697-3777-4/2340-1117
DO - 10.21125/edulearn.2017.0551
PY - 2017
Y1 - 3-5 July, 2017
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 9th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN17 Proceedings
SP - 8366
EP - 8375
ER -
L.C. Pérez-Moreno, L.M. Lus-Arana (2017) LEARNING ABOUT RENAISSANCE ARCHITECTURE IN THE XXI CENTURY. INTEGRATING HISTORY, THEORY, AND DESIGN, EDULEARN17 Proceedings, pp. 8366-8375.
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