Looking at Cities

Discipline: Architecture
Instructor: Boeschenstein
Credits: 3
Day: A
Start: 15:55
End: 17:10
Field Work: Day 1 | Portugal Download Syllabus

Cities are, arguably, the most revealing expression of their cultures, providing insights into their needs, resources, and values. This course will focus on understanding cities through the study of characteristic urban features. Topics will include urban topographies, street patterns, skylines, climatic adaptations, details, gathering places, nighttime environments, parks, and relationships to water. Investigating these elements will allow students to have greater appreciation for cities, including those on our voyage, and to realize that cities can be purposefully and evocatively designed. Field studies will apply class discussions to cities on the itinerary.

Special Requirements:
Each student should have access to a digital camera, allowing downloaded images to be incorporated into class assignments. –Moleskine Folio A4 Plain Notebook (12” x 8.5”) –Mechanical Pencil –7mm lead size, HB weight –Rubber Eraser — white, smooth such as Staedtler

Field Work

Country: Portugal
Day: 1

Lisbon's hilly topography, evocative skyline, elegant civic spaces, and rich building traditions offer excellent opportunities to study the qualities that shape memorable urban environments. Starting at the Museum of Lisbon, students will view displays from pre-historic times through the nineteenth century, including a model of Lisbon before the devastating earthquakes of 1775. Students will then travel to the Castle of St. George, dating from the sixth century, on one of the city's highest hills and consider the commanding views over the city and the Tagus River estuary. From there students will descend via the narrow, twisting alleys of the Moorish quarter, dating from the eighth century, to the Praça do Comércio, the great riverfront square. From it the Renaissance Baixa or Lower City, built after the earthquakes, extends inland through the orderly streets to the Rossio, the city's central square where contemporary buildings are more evident. Ascending the nearby hill, students will walk through the Chiado and Upper Town districts with buildings from the nineteenth century now filled with cafes, stores, and galleries. Along this route students will compare and contrast the features of these different districts, noting the relevant and enduring qualities that define the city.