Professors Garlock, Glisic, and Adriaenssens taught “Two Millenia of Structural Architecture in Italy” in the summer of 2019 through Princeton’s PIIRS Global Seminar Program.The aim of this seminar was to track and understand the structural and architectural engineering leadership of Italy in the context of social-political-economic circumstances. More can be read about this course here.
The course included a 6-day excursion through Bologna, Vicenza, and Florence to deepen and broaden the student’s learning about the integration of engineering and art. We visited structures designed by Pier Luigi Nervi (a person featured in the class who designed long spanning reinforced concrete structures in the 1900’s), the architecture of Andrea Palladio, and iconic heritage structures such as the dome in the Florence cathedral. But in addition to studying engineering + art though built works, it was studied via other engineered forms such as motorcycles (Ducati) and Dainese intelligent clothing (protective gear for motorists and skiiers). We learned about the design process of these built works, motorcycles, and intelligent clothing. In all realms, the process was similar and the significance of integrating elegance with engineering was essential, as was an understanding of the culture and people.