Between 1560 and 1630, in a dramatic burst of urban renewal activity, the religious and civil authorities of Rome sponsored the construction of aqueducts, private and public fountains for drinking, washing, and industry, and the grand ceremonial fountains that are the Eternal City’s glory.
Urban designer and historian Katherine Rinne, adjunct professor in the Architecture Program at the California College of the Arts, will address “the waters of Rome” in the Norman L. and Roselea J. Goldberg Lecture in Art History on Thursday, March 12, at 4:10 p.m. in 203 Cohen Hall. Her lecture is entitled “From Renaissance to Baroque: Water and Fountains in Sixteenth-Century Rome,” with a reception to follow in the atrium.
Rinne specializes in topics related to site and regional design with an emphasis on infrastructure, water history, and current issues related to urban development and water scarcity. She is the project director of Aquae Urbis Romae: The Waters of the City of Rome, an interactive cartographic 3,000-year history of the relationships between hydrological and hydraulic systems and their impact on the urban development of Rome, Italy. Aquae Urbis Romae examines the intersections between natural hydrological elements, including springs, rain, streams, marshes, and the Tiber River, and constructed hydraulic elements, including aqueducts, fountains, sewers, bridges, and conduits, that together create the water infrastructure system of Rome. This research project is published by the University of Virginia where Rinne is an associate fellow at the Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities.
The Waters of Rome: Aqueducts, Fountains, and the Birth of the Baroque City (Yale University Press, 2011), her pioneering study of the water infrastructure of Renaissance Rome, received the John Brinckerhoff Jackson Prize for Landscape History sponsored by the Foundation for Landscape Studies in 2011 and the Spiro Kostof Book Award for Urban History in 2012 by the Society of Architectural Historians. The Kostof Award recognizes the work that, focusing on urbanism and architecture, provides the greatest contribution to our understanding of historical development and change.
In her book Rinne presents a unified vision of Rome during the baroque period that links improvements to public and private water systems with political, religious, and social change. Tying together the technological, sociopolitical, and artistic questions that faced the designers during an age of turmoil, Rinne shows how these public works projects transformed Rome through innovative engineering and strategic urban planning.
Sponsored by the Department of History of Art and the Archaeological Institute of America, the Goldberg Lecture is free and open to the public. Limited parking is available in Lot 95 outside Cohen Hall, off 21st Avenue South on the Peabody campus and across from Medical Center East. For more information, call the department at 615.322.2831.