LATE POST: Humanist Italy

After the renewal of renaissance in the lands of Europe, humanism became a trend which turned out to be a governing movement for Architecture and gave rise to a new style highlighting symmetry, proportions and classical columns. All-antica details are observed intensely in the products of this era yet they went beyond of copying the past, but discovering the key principles of design. They reevaluated the significance of the city for people and its role for the dream of an ideal city.

Wealthy families of Florence used architecture for showing their wealth and spread fear to their enemies and started a new trend of private palaces. As seen in the works of this time they had some very strict proportions and symmetry in which they had a new perspective vision for architecture which shaped the public space, Piazz della Signoria and one could see the the the landmarks of a city in relation with others.
The cathedral Santa Maria del Fiore has been exposed to a very gradual construction. It was first designed by Arnolfo di Cambio in Gothic style clear in its ribbed vaults. Later on Francesco Talenti made the length of the nave longer and defined an area for an octagonal dome and intended to make it very large in scale to go beyond of the domes of other cities. His dome was influenced by the baptistery of San Giovanni but this became a more curved design. Urban magistrates of the city even legislated that the houses around were to rebuilt with stone cladding to adjust themselves to the dome the cathedral. There were serious problems due the proportions of the dome and Flippo Brunelleshi took charge of the project with a solution in which a dome can support itself during the construction without several of wooden supports. He succeed it through ingeneous masonry techniques and  horizontal supports. At the and dome had a Gothic character with its pointed end but Brunelleschi added all-antica details to the exterior.

Brunelleschi designed another dome in 1419, the dome of the Old Sacristy. I had a tomb in the center of the room for the patron and his wife beneath the dome to be designed. He designed a dome in a cubic base divided in twelve round-arch ribs placed by pendentives. It took my attention that Brunelleschi often used a umbrella-like dome rather than one smooth hemisphere. The Corinthian pilasters covered the altar niche.  He later commissioned to an hospital. The facade of the hospital had Corinthian columns as seen in many projects of him and behind an elevated logia (above head height) at the entrance and set a courtyard behind with long halls. The central bay had a arch with resembles the triumphal arches. In another project of him, Pazzi Chapel he again refers to an triumphal arch in the design of its porch.
Brunelleschi and Michhelozzo ensured a coherent precision for a sacred space by practicing an all-antica environment in the interior of the church of San Lorenzo. As expectedly he uses Corinthian columns and rounded arches inside. He found a way for correcting the plaement of entablature above a row by not putting it directly on the capital of a column but on a chunk placed on the capital.

On the following stages of the period they showed brilliant samples of stone cladding used for private palaces varied through texture differences and scale. All those private palaces shared near scales to each and they all were made of stone but differing in detail but in short they had many common aspects. In the Palazzo Medici Ricardi, Michelozzo made clear references to the earlier palace Palazzo Vecchio. They were both very tall cubic formed structures. Michelozzo elevated the ground level of the palace more than 1 meter above the street level to enhance the illusion of its huge volume. On the facade texture of the cladding was changing in each level and cornice details and resembled those of Roman Forum’s. The plan of the palace in general is very close to a domus shows very apparent references of precedents. Palazzo Medici inspired many other following ones and they followed the enfilade space organization (aligned rooms on an axis) of this palace.Palazzo Rucellai with a similar facade implementation (as expected) was resembling those others. However unlike the Plazzo Medici it was not totally made of stone, but the front facade, as a consequence of the ideal city thoughts of accommodating the structures to each other.

Ideal City 

There were several thoughts on creating an ideal city for the aim of renewal of renaissance. Among them the most accepted one of these ideas is the so-called ideal city panel attributed to Federico da Montefeltro put forwards a grid plan and harmonious collection of palaces which are all in similar scales overlooking to a piazza centered with a round church. The palaces built in this period such as Palazzo Medici or Palazzo Piccolomini which awere nearly identical are the samples of the execution of this idea.



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