This program explores European architecture using three very different approaches, each emphasizing firsthand encounters with the built environment. One course surveys European architectural history, ranging from the prehistoric trilithons at Stonehenge to contemporary housing developments aspiring to net-zero energy consumption. A second course examines practices and controversies in the management, presentation and conservation of architectural landmarks and urban historic districts. A third course, which is ungraded, teaches architectural drawing skills, training students to make site sketches on location, read technical drawings, and understand geometric pattern design.
Numerous architectural landmarks—such as the Alhambra, Blenheim Palace, the Colosseum, the Duomo of Florence, the Great Mosque of Cordoba, Notre Dame de Paris, the Pantheon, the Sagrada Familia, St. Peter’s Basilica, the Tower of London, Versailles and over a dozen other UNESCO world heritage sites—along with scores of additional venues, offer multicultural case studies pertinent to all three courses in the program. Students will spend several weeks apiece in England, France, Spain and Italy, staying in Oxford, London, Paris, Barcelona, Granada, Florence and Rome, but also making daytrips to other locations, such as Bath, Cordoba and Ravenna.
All students are welcome to apply. There are no prerequisite courses and no prior experience or skills are expected. The program fulfills the curricular exploration requirements for both Arts Practice and Literary/Artistic Analysis. It also fulfills the International Studies (IS) graduation requirement. In addition to Art History and Studio Art, this program can provide 6 or 12 credits towards a variety of majors and concentrations.