Course Details

ARTH 246: What Has Been Happening in Modern Architectural Design?

Architecture in our culture has become the art of solving spatial problems with large-scale constructions, at first in drawings but now as patterns on computer screens. This course examines four aspects of this Western building conceptualization during the last two hundred years, beginning with the exploration of it as the art of building and ending in coding--in our digital world today. We will focus on four fundamental moments in this historical development: 1) the emergence of the architect as a new exploring, reasoning figure in European culture in the early nineteenth-century (Labrouste, Ruskin, Viollet-le-Duc); 2) transforming into a broad conceiver of whole cities facing the demands of the late-nineteenth century urban “explosion” (Haussmann, Burnham); 3) but rapidly progressing to the abstraction of “building art,” a web of machine-like systems during the first half of the twentieth century (F. L. Wright, Le Corbusier, Hilberseimer); 4) to now sink—with struggles and false-starts—into our new computerized world. Prerequisite: Any one art history course
6 credits; LA, IS; Offered Fall 2021; D. Van Zanten