The Architecture of Thomas Jefferson for a New Democracy
From October 24
Lecturer: Cynthia R. Field, Adjunct Professor, and Isabelle J. Gournay, Associate Professor
School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, University of Maryland
This talk will present an avenue into Thomas Jefferson’s ideals and actions through his architecture. Jefferson’s architecture reflects the influence of both Scottish philosophy and French Enlightenment. This combination was a well-established special relationship in Europe. It manifested itself in his faith in the “associationist” reading of buildings and the symbolic and functional geometric forms of contemporary French designs. The dominating idea of architecture for Jefferson was its provision of didactic models for the new citizens of a democracy. In this regard, we will examine his plans for the University of Virginia, the Virginia State Capitol (on which he worked with a French architect), and his contributions to the Capitol in Washington, DC.
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