History of Architecture


Academic Year 2020/2021

Prof.ssa Maria Beltramini


Class link: https://teams.microsoft.com/l/team/19%3a2662171acfe045689d8a5c76790bd096%40thread.tacv2/conversations?groupId=221b6844-eadd-485f-a1b8-df7a42dc189b&tenantId=24c5be2a-d764-40c5-9975-82d08ae47d0e


Italian Renaissance architecture and theory from Brunelleschi to Palladio

The course analyzes the period between the beginning of the XV century in Florence exploring the work and theory of Filippo Brunelleschi and Leon Battista Alberti until the end of XVI century in Veneto with the work of Andrea Palladio. Special attention will be paid to the interpretation of antiquity and the ‘invention’ of the architectural orders.



During the oral exam students will demonstrate their acquired knowledge of Italian Renaissance Architecture discussing with the instructor the Exam Assignement’s chosen topic.  

Exam Assignment 2020 2021

Each student will choose an Italian Renaissance (ca. 1400-1550) art work (a painting on wood/canvas or a fresco, a marble or a bronze relief, a drawing, an engraving etc.), featuring a ‘classical’ building/s or ‘classical’ architectural elements of sorts and analyse it/them in detail on paper. Students are given a free choice (but here is a short list of Quattrocento and Cinquecento italian artists, whose works are definitely worth browsing):


Lorenzo Ghiberti


Filippo Lippi

Benozzo Gozzoli

Piero della Francesca

Andrea Mantegna

Jacopo, Gentile e Giovanni Bellini

Vincenzo Foppa

Domenico Ghirlandaio

Pietro Vannucci (Perugino)

Bernardo di Betto (Pintoricchio)

Luca Signorelli

Filippino Lippi

Sandro Botticelli

Vittore Carpaccio


Baldassarre Peruzzi

Giulio Romano

Perino del Vaga




Paolo Veronese

Francesco Salviati

Giorgio Vasari

Federico e Taddeo Zuccari

NB: The list provides suggestions, and students are welcome to explore outside its borders. Please contact the instructor if you need help with the selection.

The paper should not exceed 3000 words and must include:

-          A short summary of the known facts about the selected art work, i.e. authorship, dating, place of production, patronage, place of actual conservation etc. (please indicate the bibliography you consulted to collect the information);

-          A thorough visual analysis (description) of the architectural elements represented;

-          A recovery of all the possible architectural sources for as much architectural elements as you can;

-          A reflection about the ‘meaning’ of the presence of architecture in the choosen work (answering the following questions should help: in which way the architectural setting contributes to the visual structure of the represented scene? Does the architecture help in indicating a definite place or epoch, or the passing of time? How does the interplay between represented architectural elements and actual ones – if any, like an original framing, for instance – function?...).


The choice must be communicated by the end of the lessons (at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

The paper must be sent to Prof. Beltramini at least a week before the selected exam date.




Academic Year 2019/2020 

Instructor: Prof. Maria Beltramini


Raphael and Architecture. Designs and Buildings in Renaissance Rome


The course will explore the involvement of Raphael (Urbino 1483 - Rome 1520), best known for his sweet painted Madonnas, with architecture, studying his profound design culture and lively originality as they emerge first in his painted oeuvre and then in his architectural drawings and actual buildings. 


Course timetable available here

Detailed Calendar available here



There is no english translation of the catalogue of the exhibition held in 1984 in Rome, Raffaello architetto, which is still the most complete and detailed study on the subject as a whole (this is why it is crucial that you follow the teaching sessions and the on-site visits). I will be giving you my powerpoint presentations after each lesson, to help you follow and remember, but you can start reading at least:

John Shearman, Raphael as Architect, in Journal of the Royal Society of Arts, 116 (April 1968), pp. 388-409 (pdf available)

J. Ackerman, The Regions of Italian Renaissance Architecture, in H. Millon, V. Magnago Lampugnani (eds.), “The Renaissance from Brunelleschi to Michelangelo”, New York, 1997, pp. 319-348 (in the faculty library)

H. Günther, The Renaissance of Antiquity, in H. Millon, V. Magnago Lampugnani (eds.), “The Renaissance from Brunelleschi to Michelangelo”, New York, 1997, pp. 259-306 (in the faculty library)

W. Lotz, Classical Architecture in Rome: Bramante and Raphael, in Architecture in Italy 1500-1600, revised by D. Howard, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1996, pp. 11- 25 and 27-34 (in the faculty library)

Further readings will be made available soon


!!!!!!   EXAM ASSIGNMENT 2019/2020   !!!!!



Raphael Architect

Raphael 1 power point

Raphael 2 power point

Raphael 3 power point

Raphael 4 power point


Chigi S.Maria del Popolo 1

Chigi S.Maria del Popolo 2



Raphael 5 power point

Raphael 6 power point

Raphael 7 power point

Raphael 8 power point

Raphael 9 power point

Raphael 10 power point

Raphael 11 power point

Raphael 12 power point


Raphael letter Hart & Hicks






Academic Year 2018-2019

Instructors: Prof. Maria Beltramini and  visiting professor Prof. Ian Campbell


Schedule: Thursdays h.15-18 T23A, Fridays h.10-13 T23A starting October 4th

(Full timetable and details here)

Office: Building B, II Floor, Room 25

Office Hours by appointment only


NEWS:  !!! PRESENTATION BOOKING CHART!! Click here to download it

(If in need of discussing about the Presentation, Prof. Campbell will see the students in Art History Office -Room 25 Build.B. 2nd floor- on November 8th 10:30-12:00. Please, be sure to book an appointment with Prof. Campbell by communicating to him or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you are coming or not).


The Renaissance of Rome c. 1400 - c.1500
by  Prof. Ian Campbell


All students are expected to give a short illustrated presentation (no more than 20 minutes). Below I suggest 15 possible topics for you to choose from but I am happy for students to propose their own choice of topic if they agree it with me in advance. 


The topics are meant to explore fully subjects which are touched on in lectures. If the presentation is on a particular building, please try to avoid merely making a guidebook description with information easily found elsewhere. Try to pose questions such as how the finished building (if there is one) differs from earlier projects (this will involve showing us preparatory drawings, or drawings of features which were built and have now been lost or altered, etc); or how the subject displays something distinctively Roman in the way it employs all’antica motifs, etc.


After your presentation there will be time for questions and feedback from myself you’re your fellow students, and then you will be asked to submit a report (2000-2500 words), either in English, the first part of which should summarise what you said in the presentation and include a full bibliography of sources used. The second part (0-500 words) should be a reflection on how you think the presentation went, what you think worked well and what you think you would do differently next time.  


I will give you some written feedback on the presentation and the report.


1. Cosmatesque work in the Quattrocento

2. Use of spolia in the Renaissance

3. Re-use of antique buildings in the Renaissance

4. Use of octagonal columns in Quattrocento

5. Palazzo dei Tribunali

6. Palazzo Caprini

7. Palazzo Jacopo da Brescia

8. Palazzo Branconio

9. Pius II’s Benediction Loggia at St Peter’s

10. SS. Giuliano e Celso

11. S. Eligio degli Orefici

12. Capella Chigi, S. Maria del Popolo

13. S. Giovanni dei Fiorentini

14. S. Maria di Loreto

15. Villa Madama

16. Villa Giulia

17. Capella Cesi, S. Maria della Pace

18. The obelisk in Piazza del Popolo

19. Villa Lante

20. S. Giacomo degli Spagnoli


I will issue a booking chart at the time of the first lectures on 4th October. 


Prof. Ian Campbell


Click here for Bibliography/Reading List 



Lecture 1

Lecture 2 (Ackerman and Frommel articles)

Lecture 3 and 4

Lecture 5 (pwd Lecture5)

Lecture 6 (pwd Lecture6)

Lecture 7 (pwd Lecture7)