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Chapter 1

JAV132H1 Chapter Notes - Chapter 1: Leon Battista Alberti, Filippo Brunelleschi, Florence Cathedral

Architecture Studies
Course Code
Hans Ibelings

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1 - Florence
Renaissance Florence The invention of a new art Turner
· Alberti born in 1404 went to school at university at Bologna interest in philosophy and science
was a painter, sculptor and architect first to bring intellectual work down to the level of workshop
· Salutati and Bruni wrote around 1403 praising the architecture and their city
· Alberti admired the Gothic dome capstone of Florence Brunelleschi’s dome important for
architecture history and development of Florence
o Attempt to build the largest dome in the world but was surpassed by St. Peter’s a
century later
o In order to make sure the dome doesn’t collapse – he had to make it as light as
possible and work upwards miracle of engineering
o Alberti praised the Brunelleschi’s accomplishment
· Dome was the heart of Florence alberti was concern with its civic nature of arch, the
appropriateness of buildings to various levels of society and proper siting of the city’s public
buildings highest elevation so it could be seen from afar
· Brunelleschi made an orphanage/hospital that’s entrance was amazing – new style described as
Early Renaissance or classical but has connections to Greek/Roman work
o Use of columns general borrowing
· Proportions forms basis of new architecture
· The church’s interior that Brun. Created showed Florentine arch.
· Façade of Santa Maria Novella was designed by Alberti didn’t know how to carve a stone –
assigned the execution of his work to others unlike Brunelleschi
· Alberti best known for San Francesco (Tempo Malatestiano) at Rimini captures ancient roman
· Rucellai rich patron invested in the building
· He also built a palace called Palazzi not like the palaces we know
o It was more conservative 3/4 stories not a lot of doors windows one above
· The palace that typically represented an investment of ones-half to two thirds of a mans financial
Filippo Strozzi patron died before his palace began but the family finished it
- Leo attista alerti; passioately oered ith the ii ature of arhiteture, the
appropriateness of buildings to various levels of society, above all with the proper sitting of a
ity’s puli uildigs. Churhes should e the highest point in the city as it is the most
iportat. The haroizatio of parts is ore iportat tha oitet to a partiular
- Filippo Brunelleschi, gothic Florence cathedral; aimed to build the largest dome in the
orld. “t Peter’s had the largest dome about 150 years after). Difficulty to create a
seiirular doe that ould’t ollapse o itself graity, diffiulty to lose the doe.
Solution was to create the lightest dome; double shells, cross-braced ribs (some of which were
visible on the outside, others were concealed. Proposed solution to center the dome: fill the
Duomo (cathedral) with dirt and coins so the children could (free labor) dig it out. Actual
solution was to use scaffolding cantilevered on the inside of the dome. To build platforms and
move them up as you go.
- Brunelleschi developed a new style; early renaissance or classical (can be seen in the
lightness in porch entranceways)
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