Maarten Delbeke: Catalogue data in Spring Semester 2021

Name Prof. Dr. Maarten Delbeke
FieldHistory and Theory of Architecture
Address
Geschichte und Theorie der Arch.
ETH Zürich, HIL D 70.6
Stefano-Franscini-Platz 5
8093 Zürich
SWITZERLAND
Telephone+41 44 633 01 89
E-mailmaarten.delbeke@gta.arch.ethz.ch
URLhttps://delbeke.arch.ethz.ch/
DepartmentArchitecture
RelationshipFull Professor

NumberTitleECTSHoursLecturers
051-1208-21LIntegrated Discipline History of Art and Architecture Information Restricted registration - show details 3 credits2UM. Delbeke
AbstractThe "Integrated Discipline History of Art and Architecture" requires an independent demonstration of achievement within the History of Art and Architecture as an integral part of the Architectural Design project. The assignment must be completed in writing and/or in the form of creative work. Choice of subject, form and scope of the assignment must be defined in accordance with the Chair.
ObjectiveThe assignment objective is a detailed analysis within the area of the History of Architecture of a clearly defined monographic or thematic topic. The conclusions thus gained shall be integrated into the Architectural Design project.
Prerequisites / NoticeVoraussetzung ist die Anmeldung unter mystudies.ethz.ch und per e-mail an die Professur bis spätestens zum Ende der ersten Semesterwoche unter Angabe des Entwurfsthemas und der betreuenden Professur sowie die Teilnahme am Kolloquium in der zweiten Semesterwoche zur allgemeinen Einführung und konkreten Besprechung der Integrationsleistung (Ort und Uhrzeit des Kolloquiums werden auf der Homepage des Lehrstuhls Oechslin bekannt gegeben). Die Abgabe der Arbeit erfolgt gleichzeitig mit der Abgabe des Entwurfs.
052-0804-00LHistory and Theory in Architecture II Information 2 credits2V + 2UM. Delbeke, T. Avermaete, L. Stalder, P. Ursprung
AbstractIntroduction and overview of the history and theory of architecture from the Renaissance to the nineteenth century. (Prof. Dr. M. Delbeke)
Introduction in the methods and instruments of the history of art and architecture. (Prof. Dr. M. Delbeke, Prof. Dr. L. Stalder, Prof. Dr. P. Ursprung, Prof. Dr. T. Avermaete)
ObjectiveAcquiring basic knowledge of the history of architecture and architectural theory, resp. of the methods and instruments of research into architecture.
Being able to identify the main architectural issues and debates of the period and geography covered in the course.
Acquiring the attitudes and tools to develop a historically informed reading of the built environment.
Acquiring the tools to be able to draw on historical, theoretical and critical research to nourish one's architectural culture.
ContentThe course History and Theory of Architecture II offers a chronological and thematic overview of the architecture and architectural theory produced in Europe from the 15th up to 19th century. Thematic lectures about key questions at play during the period will be combined with the in-depth analysis of historical buildings. 
Themes will cover the emergence and development of Vitruvian design theory and practice up to the 19th century, and related issues such as the emergence of the architect; the media of architectural design and practice (drawings, models, building materials); patterns and media of dissemination and influence (micro-architecture, imagery); building types (the palazzo and the villa); questions of beauty and ornament; questions of patronage (e.g. the Roman papacy); the relation of buildings to the city (e.g. the development of European capitals); attitudes towards history (origin myths, historicism); the question of the monument.

The course Fundamentals of the History and Theory of Architecture II consists of different parts, each dealing with a particular area of research into the history of art and architecture
(1) The historiography of architecture (M. Delbeke)
(2) Architectural media (L. Stalder).
(3) Architecture and art (P. Ursprung)
(4) Urbanism and the Commons (T. Avermaete)
LiteratureLiterature and handouts will be provided over the course of the term.
Prerequisites / NoticeFor the course History and Theory of Architecture II students will rely on assisted self study to acquire basic knowledge of the canonical history of architecture in Europe.
052-0830-00LHistory of Art and Architecture: Hunting Shadows Restricted registration - show details
Does not take place this semester.
Not eligible as a Compulsory GESS Elective for students of D-ARCH.

This course (ends with «00L») can only be passed once! Please check this before signing up.
2 credits2GM. Delbeke
AbstractThis is a survey course that explores the history of architectural representation through a single motif—the shadow. The "illustration" of shadows is a feature of architectural drawing that is capable of revealing much precisely because it is perceived as incidental.
ObjectiveAs a minimal outcome of this course, you should be able to compare a contemporary architectural image with an early modern image, and discuss the appearance of convention, media and content in both. More capable students should also be able to trace a single motif across multiple case studies, and thereby identify anachronic elements that persist not only in contemporary architecture, but are embedded in the tools of contemporary architectural design. The best students should be able to relate this analysis to broader historical questions regarding the autonomy of architecture, and the relationship between technique and knowledge.
ContentThis is not a course that approaches architecture via media, nor by material, but rather by something that is between the two. The shadow is as inevitable a part of architecture as light, but it is rarely, if ever, a subject of sustained inquiry. The shadow silently slips through the net of almost all the serious discourses of architectural history. All the same, it is a motif through which the entire history of architectural representation can be retold, from the development of drawing techniques to the definitions of shelter. From Hugh Ferriss’ tenebrous charcoals of New York skyscrapers to contemporary overshadow laws (visible in the form of Zurich’s Prime Tower), shadows shape the legal limits of buildings just as they delimit them on paper. Akin to the latent image in photography, the heightened role of the shadow in architecture is the logical consequence of the constant pursuit of light.

What is a shadow? Contrary to the tale of the maid of Corinth, who was said to have traced the shadow of her departing lover, in order to possess at least an outline, natual shadows are neither still, nor do they present sharp silhouettes. All natural shadows move, because all natural light sources are mobile. Before the invention of electric light, the only shadows that were fixed in place were those that had been drawn or painted. Furthermore, shadows are never completely sharp, because of the wave-like behaviour of light. It is only now that computer graphics specialists are developing techniques to simulate penumbra, the soft edges of cast shadows.

The study of shadows has a prominent role in classical architecture, from the panoply of horizontal shadows—Σκοτία—in columns and entablatures, to the the metaphysical importance da Vinci attributed to sfumato. In other traditions, the shadow plays even more obscure roles, connecting to questions of nostalgia, the distant past, and to the dead. As architectural drafting evolved, the depiction of shadows was used to demonstrate technical skill, as much as to indicate three-dimensional depth. Today, the shadow is an active protagonist in architectural legislation, and by extension, architectural design. Shadow casting is a standard feature of CAAD design packages, and serves both pragmatic and aesthetic functions. But can we use them to navigate through the history of architectural representation?
Prerequisites / NoticeNot eligible as a Compulsory GESS Elective for students of D-ARCH.
056-0106-00LStudy Trip I Information Restricted registration - show details
Only for MAS in History and Theory of Architecture.
2 credits4PS. Schindler Kilian, M. Delbeke
AbstractVenice defies many of the categories typically associated with the emergence of twentieth-century institutions. The nation state is one such example; it was not until 1866 that the city became Italian. As such, Venice is a rich case study to study how various forms of financial, governmental, and civic institutions emerged in tandem with its architecture and urbanism.
ObjectiveThrough the lens of institutions, students will gain an understanding of the mutual construction of architectural, economic and political form. We will analyze various legal constructs that have shaped Venice and its hinterlands over the course of several centuries: credit, property, preservation, nation state, Biennale.
ContentVisit of key buildings and sites with lectures and guided tours; analyses of the intersections between institutional and architectural form.
LiteratureWill be announced on the class platform.
056-0107-00LStudy Trip II Information Restricted registration - show details
Only for MAS in History and Theory of Architecture.
2 credits4PS. Schindler Kilian, M. Delbeke
AbstractVenice defies many of the categories typically associated with the emergence of twentieth-century institutions. The nation state is one such example; it was not until 1866 that the city became Italian. As such, Venice is a rich case study to study how various forms of financial, governmental, and civic institutions emerged in tandem with its architecture and urbanism.
ObjectiveThrough the lens of institutions, students will gain an understanding of the mutual construction of architectural, economic and political form. We will analyze various legal constructs that have shaped Venice and its hinterlands over the course of several centuries: credit, property, preservation, nation state, Biennale.
ContentVisit of key buildings and sites with lectures and guided tours; analyses of the intersections between institutional and architectural form.
LiteratureWill be announced on the class platform.
056-0202-01LScientific Home Work (2) Information Restricted registration - show details
Only for MAS in History and Theory of Architecture.
4 creditsS. Schindler Kilian, M. Delbeke
AbstractThe individually tutored seminar paper on a chosen subject trains students in self-motivated, independent academic work.
ObjectiveStudents are able to write a scientific paper (approx. 25,000 letters).
056-0203-01LIndividual Seminar Paper Information Restricted registration - show details
Only for MAS in History and Theory of Architecture.
4 creditsS. Schindler Kilian, M. Delbeke
AbstractIndependent, written, scientific study of a defined monographic or subject-specific issue from the subject area of architectural history and theory.
ObjectiveThe aim is the independent, written and scientific assessment of a topic concerning architectural history or architectural theory. The students gain a deeper insight into humanistic issues and methods.
ContentThe topic of the thesis is freely chosen and individually supervised in consultation with the lecturers. In addition to their own ideas, students should discuss the research standpoints. The practical application of scientific standards and a clear linguistic argumentation are put to practice. The thesis entails around 25,000 characters.
056-0204-00LConsultation and Presentation Information Restricted registration - show details
Only for MAS in History and Theory of Architecture.
1 credit1AS. Schindler Kilian, M. Delbeke
AbstractAcademic consultations, possibly with individually agreed educational goals (depending on a student’s biography and envisaged career). In this mo-dule period, students will also put the intermediate results of their research up for discussion in public workshop debates.
Assessment of academic achievement in the form of a public presentation.
ObjectiveWorking on an individual issue or research topic.
056-0210-10LMAS-Thesis Information Restricted registration - show details
Only for MAS in History and Theory of Architecture.
15 credits21DS. Schindler Kilian, M. Delbeke
AbstractCredited master thesis as assessment of students’ competence in dealing with a chosen research subject (at least 120,000 letters).
Objective
063-0316-00LHistory of Art and Architecture VI Information Restricted registration - show details
This core course (ends with «00L») can only be passed once! Please check this before signing up.
1 credit1VM. Delbeke, S. de Jong
AbstractExperiencing Architecture:

Architectural experience became a key concept in architectural theory and design in the second half of the 18th century. The course examines this concept in texts, designs and buildings in Paris and London. We will question the emergence of architectural experience in observations of buildings, in theories, in teachings at the academies, and in designs of buildings.
ObjectiveDeepen the basic knowledge
ContentExperiencing Architecture: Words, Designs, and Buildings:

The notion that buildings are foremost objects to be experienced, and that the intended experience of buildings should guide their design, became a key concept in the second half of the eighteenth century. The course examines architectural experience in texts, designs and buildings in Paris and London, the main eighteenth-century centres of cultural debates that went through major urban and architectural developments.

It studies the role of architectural experience in discussions about the situation, spatial composition, form and meaning of buildings. It questions how the relationship between experience and design evolved in this period: in writings of architects on experiencing buildings, in theoretical concepts, in design theories presented in lectures at the academies of architecture, and in architectural design.
063-0318-21LHistory of Art and Architecture (Thesis Elective) Information Restricted registration - show details 6 credits13AM. Delbeke
AbstractEssay on a subject from the field of architectural history
ObjectiveIndependent preparation of a scholarly essay on a topic from the field of architectural history.
ContentThe aim of the elective course paper is to discuss a topic freely selected from the field of architectural history, in agreement with the assistant lecturer(s). In addition to original ideas, positions taken in the history of research on the subject should also be discussed. It is important to use the correct scholarly format and clear language. The paper should be approximately 36,000 characters in length and should also include as much pictorial material as needed. At the beginning and in the end the paper will be discussed in detail.
063-0802-00LHistory and Theory in Architecture VIII (M.Delbeke/L.Stalder) Information
This core course (ends with «00L») can only be passed once! Please check this before signing up.
2 credits2VM. Delbeke, L. Stalder
AbstractThe course offers an advanced introduction into the practices and debates of architectural history and theory.
ObjectiveBasic knowledge of the history and theory of the architecture.
ContentMaarten Delbeke, Rococo

This lecture series explores and interprets the rococo church architecture of what is now Southern Germany, by examining its religious and political context, by proposing a close reading of a number of case-studies, and by offering a thematic analysis of some of its key features. The course is intended at once as a thorough introduction and an open-ended process of discovery, where preliminary observations will be weighed and discussed collectively.


Laurent Stalder: What is new about New Brutalism?

Taking the English avant-garde as an example, the lecture examines the deep transformations in architecture during the postwar period. The focus lies on the question of performance in architecture, from constructive questions (e.g., prefabrication), structural challenges (e.g., theory of plasticity), physical properties (e.g., isolation), infrastructural changes (e.g., pipes and machines), to spatial challenges and their aesthetic consequences for people, architecture, and the environment. The goal of the lecture is to use the recent architectural history to shed light on different concepts still relevant for contemporary architecture.
LiteratureStalder: Brutalism https://stalder.arch.ethz.ch/lehrveranstaltungen/um-1950-new-brutalism-etc
Delbeke: Rococo = https://delbeke.arch.ethz.ch/lehrveranstaltungen/rococo-in-switzerland-and-southern-germany-fs-21
Prerequisites / NoticeStalder: Brutalism = https://ethz.zoom.us/j/91848526400
Delbeke: Rococo = https://ethz.zoom.us/j/94762667751?pwd=RVhjK2VGL05qRHE2OXk5RGZBaUdZZz09 (Passcode: 258453)
063-0806-00LInputs From Outside In the Field of History and Theory of Architecture (Guest Professor's Lecture) Information
This core course (ends with «00L») can only be passed once! Please check this before signing up.
2 credits2VC. Brothers, M. Delbeke, L. Stalder
AbstractThis course will aim to explore the Mediterranean, a region of great importance to trade, culture and politics over many centuries that continues to defy conventional academic and geographic categories. The course will aim to expand the existing discussion towards the inclusion of the built environment and cultural artifacts, and contemporary reverberations of the region’s history.
ObjectiveThe course considers buildings and landscapes from across the Mediterranean world, encompassing Italy, Spain, the Ottoman Empire, North Africa and Egypt. Its chronological and geographical scope is meant to bring into question some the conventional categories by which art and architectural history are studied: “Medieval,” “Renaissance,” “Italian,” “Islamic,” “Western,” etc. These categories tend to impose a particular narrative on history, suggesting that the Renaissance was a break with the middle ages, that Florence was the cultural center of Europe, and that the relation between European and Islamic societies could be manifest only through conflict. This course will attempt to resist this narrative, and to propose an alternative one based on the ideas of cultural interchange, rivalry, and appropriation.
ContentNationalism has cast a long shadow in the humanities, dividing disciplines along lines that often do not correspond to the most important boundaries of earlier eras, or even of our own. This course will aim to explore the Mediterranean, a region of great importance to trade, culture and politics over many centuries that continues to defy conventional academic and geographic categories. While Mediterranean studies were established by Fernand Braudel (in La Méditerranée et le monde méditerranéen à l’époque de Philippe II, 1949) and have seen a revival of interest in the last decades, the course will aim to expand the existing discussion towards the inclusion of the built environment and cultural artifacts, and towards a consideration of the contemporary reverberations of the region’s history.

The course considers a range of buildings and landscapes from across the Mediterranean world, encompassing Italy, Spain, the Ottoman Empire, North Africa and Egypt. Its chronological and geographical scope are meant to bring into question some the conventional categories by which art and architectural history are studied: “Medieval,” “Renaissance,” “Italian,” “Islamic,” “Western,” etc. These categories tend to impose a particular narrative on history, suggesting that the Renaissance was a break with the middle ages, that Florence was the cultural center of Europe, and that the relation between European and Islamic societies could be manifest only through conflict. This course will attempt to resist this narrative, and to propose an alternative one based on the ideas of cultural interchange, rivalry, and appropriation. In considering this range of subject matter, emphasis will be placed on sites, cities, and monuments that show the traces of a layered or contested history.
063-0856-21LSubject Semester (Fachsemester) FS21 in the Field of History and Theory of Architecture (gta Delbeke Information Restricted registration - show details
Only for Architecture MSc, Programme Regulations 2017.
Enrolment only possible after consultation with the lecturer.

A student can only register once for a "Fachsemester" during the Master studies!
14 credits29AM. Delbeke
AbstractTheme for this History Research Studio is ‘The Ways of the Architect’. The Studio aims at exploring the artistic, social and cultural paradigms through which the figure of the early modern architect became institutionalized and canonized or, conversely, was questioned and challenged, through professional practices, craftsmanship, discourse, iconography, education, politics and so on.
ObjectiveStudents are invited to identify and investigate their own specific case studies that pertain to this theme. The Studio will teach students to be both historically and critically competent. By combining different historiographical approaches, students will develop the skills to articulate their research questions, carry out appropriate primary and secondary study and write a complete paper.

The structure of the studio will follow an input-exchange-output model. All members of the chair will provide input, to both the theme and method, as well as examples and references of research. There is also room for students to read and discuss together with the material prepared for them (short texts, summaries and reading lists) and the materials they found. Weekly group meetings and individual supervision by the chair members will help students in academic research and writing. Exchanges with the researchers at the chair are also beneficial to further develop their research themes and teaching.
ContentThe cultural, economic, social and professional identification of the architect has been the object of countless debates and profound transformations over the early modern period. Far from being univocal, these transformations are a result of specific historical milieus and socio-cultural conditions. There is not such as the architect, but rather a vast universe of architectural practices and products, each the result of the unique conditions of a time and a place. This Master Studio invites students to adopt the figure of the architect as a primary investigative territory to critically examine the ways in which architecture is produced, conceptualised and historicised in a particular cultural and historical context.

The courses and meetings of the semester will examine the professional, artistic, authorial and cultural identification of the architect as an opportunity for debate and discourse over architectural history during the early modern period (circa 1450-1850). Possible topics include:

- How specific cultural and social contexts (e.g. Switzerland, Italy, France, England) impacted and codified specific ‘ways’ of being an architect (i.e. traditions of craftmanship, political/religious forces, economic conditions…).
- The ways in which early modern architects developed a professional profile and promoted their own persona, for example through books or by establishing relationships with patrons or political figures.
- How architects operated in the field, and the outcomes of their practice: buildings, temporary structures, books, drawings, paintings, decorations, furniture, design methods, pedagogy…
- The social and cultural status of the architect and its public dimension and reception, for example through issues of gender, education, personal background, personality...
- The position of the architect in relation to other figures, such as craftsmen, builders, plasterers, printers, engravers, patrons, politicians, writers, clients, colleagues, students…

The course examines the ways in which architects cultivated and negotiated their identities, how they carried out their work and the forces at play along these processes, in relation to specific places, such as Switzerland, Italy or France. On the one hand, we understand the necessity of a canonical history; on the other hand, the Studio searches and tests approaches and methods of enquiry that challenge that canon and propose a different history.

As the incipit of his Story of Art, Ernst Gombrich famously stated that ‘There is no such thing as art. There are only artists.’ Along similar lines, in order to understand how architectural practitioners operated, how their work was received and represented, and how their professional profiles were constructed, we have to also examine the cultures, artistic sensibilities, technological systems, politics and economies across which they existed. ‘The Ways of the Architect’ seeks to ‘start with the architect’ as a key entry point into the ways in which architecture itself was negotiated through the conditions of specific a place and time.
Prerequisites / NoticePlaces for this Subject Semester are limited. Please send your candidacy by email (a 300-word motivation letter and, a 300-word statement on your topic of interest) by Wednesday 20 January 2021 at the latest to: professur.delbeke@gta.arch.ethz.ch

You will receive a message on your acceptance for the Fachsemester by Wednesday 3 February 2021.

A student can only register once for a "Fachsemester" during the Master studies!
064-0004-21LAdvanced Topics in History and Theory of Architecture Information 3 credits2KM. Delbeke, T. Avermaete, L. Stalder
AbstractAdvanced Research Methods in the History and Theory of Art and Architecture
ObjectiveAcquiring insight in the different possible research methods available to PhD-researchers in the fields of the history and theory of art and architecture.
ContentMannerism - baroque - rococo
The seminar will treat the history and historiography of European architecture of the 16th up to 19th century, with a central focus on the uses and meaning of these three notions. The aim is to confront historiographic reflection with historical enquiry, in order to familiarise participants with key moments in architectural history, while provoking a critical reflection on how this history is written. The seminar will consist of collective readings of key texts as well as guest lectures by leading scholars.