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Title: Architectural Translations: Giuseppe Barberi (1746-1809) between Rome & Paris
Authors: Riggs, Marion
Advisors: Pinto, John
Contributors: Art and Archaeology Department
Subjects: Art history
Issue Date: 2012
Publisher: Princeton, NJ : Princeton University
Abstract: This dissertation considers the drawings of the Roman architect Giuseppe Barberi (1746-1809) in relation to broader contexts of architectural theory and culture of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century. Barberi was engaged with professional networks in which ideas were being generated and circulated, both in Rome and Paris, and he drew on various strands of these ideas and incorporated them into his drawings. Thus, his drawings are interpreted in this dissertation as visual repositories of these ideas. The first chapter of the dissertation is an overview of Barberi's career, the purpose of which is to provide the reader with a sense of the various types of enterprises with which he was engaged, his professional networks, and how greater cultural institutions and political events shaped his professional practice. The subsequent three chapters focus on small groups of his drawings executed in different periods of his career. The second chapter considers a group of drawings of poet improvisers from a Roman literary academy most likely executed in the late 1770s or early 1780s. The third chapter considers architectural sketches drawn in a Borrominesque style of the late 1790s, and the last chapter considers large presentation drawings for a massive theater complex in the form of a classical amphitheater designed for Paris in 1805. Each of these groups of drawings is interpreted in relation to broader architectural and cultural dialogues that were taking place around Barberi, dialogues which I reconstruct using archival sources, contemporary artistic production, and a range of eighteenth-century and early nineteenth-century texts. Barberi's drawings in the second chapter are interpreted as being part of contemporary discussions on poetic improvisation. Those in the third chapter illuminate the eighteenth-century reception of Borromini, and those of the final chapter relate to discussions on the status of the public building as a monument in Paris in the early nineteenth century. Throughout the dissertation, the transformation of ideas on architecture brought about by the circulation of texts and the geographical transfer of people, mainly between Rome and Paris, is a central concern. This dissertation brings to light the significance of geographical and linguistic translation for Barberi's contemporaries and demonstrates how the analysis of specific instances of translation provides a tool with which to approach the study of architecture of this period, an approach that values architectural ideas and products as being part of dynamic cultural processes. Barberi, in his own travels through Italy and France, his reception of architectural theory coming out of linguistic translations, and his own translation of complex cultural issues into the visual language of architecture, emerges as a key figure of this broader culture of translation.
Alternate format: The Mudd Manuscript Library retains one bound copy of each dissertation. Search for these copies in the library's main catalog
Type of Material: Academic dissertations (Ph.D.)
Language: en
Appears in Collections:Art and Archaeology

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