had taught the centralizing gaze assured patients of the presence of providence

Had taught the centralizing gaze assured patients of

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had taught, the centralizing gaze assured patients of the presence of providence, but the conscious surveillance of their peripheral positions from the center would, according to Enlightenment philosophy of mind and body, invest the individuals therein with a responsible consciousness.They would become through prayer and work agents of their own reform and reintegration to society.The architectural design would guarantee it. If the building’s plan fulfills the functional necessities of its social goals, the facade addresses, within the limits of economy, the aesthetics of civic architecture and magnificence.The facade was originally to have been 101 bays long, longer than the Manica 45 the challenge of tradition, 1750–1900
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Lunga, each of its five segments larger than the Palazzo Farnese in Rome, and so sparse in its ornamentation as to bring to mind the unadorned mass of the Palazzo Farnese in Parma, once young Carlos’s ducal seat. Fuga employed the lowest, most economical pilaster strips and trabeation lines to delineate wall cells and rhythm for suggestions of central and terminal pavilions.The wall is stripped down to its barest essentials.The triangular pediment that only meekly ornaments the mighty face was added by later architects who shied from Fuga’s severity. The Albergo dei Poveri, even in the small fraction of the building eventually completed, exercises an immense visual power at its scale—larger than the eye can take in.The Albergo impresses itself upon the city and the region not by any alignments that were sacrificed at this site but merely by the scale of its conception. Fuga’s achievement of sober grandiosity and equilibrated articulations has made the most monumental effect from the most parsimonious means.The true monumentality of the Albergo dei Poveri is expressed in a perfect match of his form and its program. Although largely incomplete, it is the most ambitious utopian attempt of the Enlightenment. After thirty years of fitful construction, it was clear that the economic support of Ferdinando’s regency would not see the building completed.“At less expense and in shorter time, one could have eliminated all poverty in the abundant Realm of Naples. It’s a continual refrain,” Milizia complained,“that with these Hospices one does not eliminate the poor. But this is not the business of the Architect but of good Government.” In 1764, a famine pressed the building into partial service, and the central church space was never built, nor were the workshops for the education of the inmates.The program never rehabilitated or reintegrated anyone, and the Albergo became known crudely as a reclusorio , jokingly as a seraglio , and effectively as a prison for the poor. Fuga’s Albergo passed immediately from a utopian vision to a grandiose ruin, inhabited by a variegated society of squatters.The palace for the proletariat did not ameliorate the situation in Naples as Milizia predicted but defined with greater clarity the distance between it and the palace of the privileged at Caserta.
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  • Spring '17
  • Archt. De Veyra

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