From Destruction to Construction. Rebuilding and Rethinking Destroyed Cities in the Aftermath of Catastrophes (c. 1500-1600)

Saida Bondini

My project investigates the interdependence of natural disasters and art making in sixteenth-century cities. It explores the impact of destruction on artistic development, the transformation of the urban space and its social perception. On the one hand, it aims to analyse the material response to catastrophes (e.g. rebuilding techniques, monumentalisation of ruins, repurposing of fragments); on the other hand, it will consider the social and conceptual implications of catastrophes, including questions of loss and memory.

In dealing with these issues, the research seeks to engage with modern theoretical frameworks developed in response to recent catastrophes, translating some of their core questions into a historical perspective. This long-durée approach aims to an evaluation of cultural- or period-specific reactions to disasters and their evolution over time.


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