ARCH 221 Report: The Renaissance: Ideal and Fad-Spain and the New World- Istanbul and Venice


In the Renaissance term, the rediscovery of the Classical part was one the two great adventures that informed the Renaissance. The other was the exploration and conquest of America. In architecture of Renaissance term places emphasis on symmetry, proportion, geometry, and the regularity of parts as they are demonstrated in the architecture of classical antiquity and in particular ancient Roman architecture.

A unique and intricate style, the tradition of architecture of Maya spans several thousands of years. the bare outline of Mayan architecture is quickly drawn. The monumental cores of the foremost cities are made up of temple- pyramids, ball courts, and “palaces” arranged around paved public spaces.  At the heart of the Maya city existed the large plazas surrounded by their most valued governmental and religious buildings such as the royal acropolis, great pyramid temples, and occasionally ball courts. Though city layouts evolved as nature dictated, careful attention was placed on the directional orientation of temples and observatories so that they were constructed in accordance with Maya interpretation of the orbits of the stars.

Towards the end of the 15th century, and before influencing Latin America with its Colonial architecture, Spain itself experimented with Renaissance architecture, developed mostly by local architects. With the arrival of the Spanish were introduced architectural theories of classical order and Arabic formalities, to build the first churches and monasteries monastic.

Two exceptional cities, İstanbul and Venice, will help us experience something of this unfolding Mediterranean world.

Turkey in the Renaissance, The chief device of Ottoman city-making was the külliye. The word derives from the Arabic word meaning “the whole”. A külliye was the functional center of a well-defined neighborhood, identified in these first decades by family bonds, profession, or place of origin. It consisted of an interrelated group of buildings around a mosque.

Cour de la mosquée Süleymaniye, Istanbul, Turquie.

Cour de la mosquée Süleymaniye, Istanbul, Turquie.

The main traits of Ottoman architecture are already present here: cut-stone masonry and simple , clear forms often used serially. The Ottomans achieved the highest level architecture in their lands hence or since. They mastered the technique of building vast inner spaces confined by seemingly weightless yet massive domes, and achieving perfect harmony between inner and outer spaces, as well as articulated light and shadow. Islamic religious architecture which until then consisted of simple buildings with extensive decorations, was transformed by the Ottomans through a dynamic architectural vocabulary of vaults, domes, semi domes and columns. During the classical period mosque plans changed to include inner and outer courtyards. The inner courtyard and the mosque were inseparable. The master architect of the classical period was Mimar Sinan.  Sinan started a new era in world architecture, creating 334 buildings in various cities. Mimar Sinan’s first important work was the Şehzade Mosque . His second significant work was the Süleymaniye Mosque and the surrounding complex, built for Suleiman the magnificant. The mosque is surrounded by an outer courtyard . Trees decorate the courtyard surrounded by walls pierced with windows. Like the other imperial mosques in Istanbul, the Süleymaniye mosque itself is preceded by a monumental courtyard on its west side.

The Italian Renaissance was slow to touch the marshlands of the Veneto and its maritime. Italy had no strong claims on Venice. Architecture in Venice and the Veneto was largely based on the work of Andrea Palladio, who designed and completed some highly influential works, including Villas in the mainland. Due to the new demand for villas in the sixteenth century, Palladio specialized in domestic architecture, although he also designed two beautiful and impressive churches in Venice

In the Venato, the Renaissance ushered in a new era of architecture after a phase of Gothic art, with the creation of important works in Venice. This phase of architecture drew heavily on classical Roman and Greek motifs.



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