The course’s content and teaching method is adapted to the needs of a contemporary Department of Architecture, open to all aspects of professional, educational and intellectual research pursued by the international academic community of architects. In order to specify the above mentioned aims, the course offers an introduction to the following topics:
- The relationship of contemporary architectural activity with the policies of the countries of the southeastern Mediterranean in the field of Archaeology. We specifically emphasize the relationship between the constructional practice and the official action of the Hellenic state in relation to Archaeology (rescue and systematic excavations, reconstruction hypothesis drawings, digital reconstruction views, restoration, enhancement and remodelling of archaeological sites, archaeological museums).
- The relationship of the study of Ancient Greek Architecture to the worldwide renovation of buildings belonging to the neo-classical architectural style and the imitations of ancient forms.
- The in depth study of Ancient Architecture in relation to Philosophy, Ideology, Politics, as a preparation for the study of the Architecture of the Renaissance, the Bourgeois Revolution and all kinds of Classical revivals.
Concerning the content of the course: already from theveryfirst lectureare presented –without being dismissive–the two “Schools” of teaching Ancient Architecture: the “School” which is based upon the development of the discipline within time (as a typical History of Architecture) and the “School” which deals with the topic within space (as a conventional Ancient Topography). During the coursethese two “Schools” are well taken into consideration;however athird didactic approach of the ancient constructed space is proposed: the discussion of any ancient structure as a structure- more specifically:
- as a system of specific architectural elements (:Terminology)
- which, when assembled, create architectural buildings types (: Typology)
- which, in turn, compose urban entities (: Urbanism)
- which in the end, when allocated within ageographical space, create the Ekistics of the Ancient World.
From this third “School” which we advocate, results the first narrow academic content of the course, the grammar of a language, firstly the “Grammar” of Ancient Greek Architecture whichis articulated byan elementary inductive consideration of the individual elements, initially, of the ancient Greek temple as a construction: foundation, substructure, bearing elements, columns and masonry, orders, entablature, ceiling, roofing, decoration, materials and techniques of construction, temple types.
The acquisition of the “Grammar” of Classical Architecture as knowledge is an intermediate,not a final target. It is mostly interwoven with a second more synthetic aim: the consolidation of the “Syntax” of the language in question, namelythe discussion of the topic of planning in Antiquity. Relevantto this second aim is the second chapter of the content of the course, in which the following topics are discussed:
- Factorswhich influence the conception of the building by the architect of the Greco-Roman World.
- Parameterswhich influence the planning procedure during Antiquity.
- The visualization of the building before construction: a response to the question “did any kind of drawing ofabuilding exist during Greek Antiquity, or does the syngraphe substitute the drawing?”
Yet even this second aim is intermediate. The final aims of the course are interpretative:
- The development of the interpretative skills of the young architect concerning the interpretation of planning during Antiquity, by practisingin the method of reduction in the fields of Philosophy, the Sciences, Social Anthropology and Economics of the Ancient World.
- The preparation for his encounter with the historical “future” of the Classical: Renaissance, Baroque, Neo-classicism, and -why not? - Post Modernism. All the above, in complete comparison to the ally of the Classicalin the field of Philosophy (Rationalism)and simultaneouslytohis opponent in the field of History: Modernism.
R. Ginouvès - R. Martin, Dictionnaire méthodique de l’architecture grecque et romaine I, Paris-Roma 1985.
R. Ginouvès, Dictionnaire méthodique de l’architecture grecque et romaine II-III, Paris-Roma 1992, 1998.
M.-C. Hellmann, L’architecture grecque, 1. Les principes de la construction, Paris 2002.
J.J. Coulton, Ancient Greek architects at work: problems of structure and design, Ithaka, N.Y. 1977.
J.P. Heisel, Antike Bauzeichnungen, Darmstadt 1993.
J. Ito, Theory and practice of site planning in classical sanctuaries, Fukuoka 2002.
J.R. Senseney, The art of building in the classical world: vision, craftsmanship, and linear perspective in Greek and Roman architecture, Cambridge 2011.