Public parks and promenades were planted archeological sites cleared markets

Public parks and promenades were planted

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drafted. Public parks and promenades were planted, archeological sites cleared, markets and slaughterhouses erected. On architectural and urbanistic matters, the Commission des Embellissements, the first public bureaucratic instrument of its kind in Rome, was formed by the triumvirate of Giuseppe Camporese, collaborator on the 1798 Festa della Federazione , Carlo Fea,Visconti’s successor at the Vatican curatorial staff, and Giuseppe Valadier.As an instrument of socialization, public space for promenades was a main priority for Napoleon and in 1811 he established a public garden above the Piazza del Popolo on the Pincian Hill.Valadier, who had already been working on such a plan, was well prepared for the project’s direction and was given the job. Giuseppe Valadier was of the third generation in the famous family of Provençal goldsmiths in Rome. His family’s reputation and his father’s contacts assisted in his rich education and early rise.While 114 the architecture of modern italy
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yet a teenager, he had traveled to Milan as his father’s courier and admired the cosmopolitan classicism of Piermarini’s architecture. Before his twentieth birthday, he was appointed to the architectural team at the Vatican during the construction of Marchionni’s sacristy. Like Morelli, he quickly advanced his position by working on projects across the papal provinces. In November 1786,Valadier was sent to rebuild the cathedral at Urbino that had been damaged by an earthquake. He reformed the church in a classical Palladian mode akin to Quarenghi’s handling at Subiaco a decade earlier.Valadier successfully balanced his fine classical training and rational temperance to prevail as a prominent professional. The brusk arrival of the revolution and the flush of new architectural blood marginalized Valadier’s talents, but he found continuing support among private patrons. In the more moderate times that followed,Valadier studied Percier and Fontaine’s Receuil , as is evident in the French-inspired interior decorations he completed for the Palazzo Braschi.Valadier’s broad education and equilibrated character made him employable on a wide range of tasks, and as such he was Napoleon’s key architect in Rome on the most important French projects. The Piazza del Popolo was Rome’s principal point of entry. Grand Tourists arrived along the Via Flaminia, passing through the city walls at the northern gate in to this piazza. Despite many significant interventions, including a new Renaissance facade for the Church of Santa Maria del Popolo, the relocation of an Egyptian obelisk to a point on axis with the three radiating streets, the space itself lacked definition. Like the Pantheon’s attic, the oddly formed piazza was an eyesore to eighteenth-century scholars trained on classical integration. In 1772 Anton Raffael Mengs, then president of the Accademia di San Luca, sponsored a student competition for a redrafting of the piazza with “decorous constructions disposed in good symmetry.” Valadier was too young to have participated, but he
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  • Spring '17
  • Archt. De Veyra

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