In 1836, the young Viollet-le-Duc travelled to Italy with the purposeof completing his studies on art and architecture, which he had interrupted in France as he did not agree with the classicistic orientation of the Académie des Beaux-arts. In Sicily, he turned a distracted eye to Doric architecture, but concentrated on analysingthe archaic forms of Gothic architecture. Following the intuitions of Séroux D’Agincourt, Ignaz Hittorf and Ludwig von Zanth, he identified the archetypes of Gothic architecture, which was to be the principal interest in his career as architect, in some Medieval buildings in Palermo, such as the so-called palaces of Zisa and Cuba. In that period, some protagonists of French Romanticism, such as Viollet-le-Duc’s uncle Ètienne Jean Delécluze, Prosper Mérimée, Victor Hugo and René de Chateaubriand, turned their attention to Gothic architecture and its preservation amidst demolitions and damage due to ignorance. Through the studies of these protagonists, the essay tries to trace this important moment in the history of architecture, which precedes the long period when medieval architecture was to be restored following the “character” and supposed original style.
|Number of pages||40|
|Publication status||Published - 2017|