Department of Architecture of the University of Florence.
Mission and purpose
Origins and development
The Department of Architecture was born from the application of the reorganization of the administrative and didactic structures of the Universities in application of the Gelmini Reform (Law, 30/12/2010).
The new structure uses the acronym DIDA (Department of Architecture) and comes to life from the reunification of the various departments already present in the Faculty of Architecture, which in turn has been transformed into a School of Architecture.
Its history reflects the wealth of experience and quality of the various departments that made it up and formerly headed the former Faculty
The School of Architecture officially originated in June 1930 but its roots are more ancient and linked to the foundation of the Academy of Arts and Design, commissioned by Cosimo de 'Medici in January 1563 on the advice of the architect Giorgio Vasari and who it also included the teaching of Architecture. It is no coincidence that the seat of the current School of Architecture, in use until the 1980s, was precisely that of the Academy itself in via Ricasoli, near Piazza San Marco.
The university profile is outlined at the beginning of the last century when in 1907, in Florence, at the same location, a Special Architecture Course was established for the achievement of the diploma of professor of architectural design. In 1927-28 the Higher School of Architecture was established, promoted by local authorities to meet the cultural needs of Florence, a fully qualified seat for studies at a level more aimed at the profession of architect.
Finally, in 1930, the course of study passed under the nascent Higher Institute of Architecture, with an autonomous organization and an organic study plan for the scientific-technical and historical-critical preparation of the student architects. Promoter of the initiative was Raffaello Brizzi, then president of the Tuscany Section of the Federation of Italian Architects and professor of architecture at the Academy.
The Higher Institute of Architecture of Florence was governed by the Council composed of prof. Raffaello Brizzi, Director and Full Professor of "Architectural Composition", by prof. Raffaello Fagnoni of "Characters of buildings" and by prof. Felice Jodi of “Construction Science”.
Subsequently, with RD of 25 March 1936, the Higher Institute of Architecture was aggregated to the University of Architecture as a Faculty of Architecture of Florence, for the conduct of five-year courses and the achievement of the degree of doctor in architecture.
Among the illustrious personalities who in the years that have made the history of the School of Architecture are remembered in various ways: Raffaello Brizzi (founder and dean from 1936-1944), Giovanni Michelucci (member of the Tuscan Group and dean of the Faculty in the period between 1944 and 1948), Piero Sanpaolesi (pivotal figure for the discipline of Architectural Restoration and headmaster from 1969 to 1971), Umberto Eco (internationally renowned intellectual and teacher in 1968). Numerous architects were trained at the School including: Andrea Branzi, Massimo Carmassi, David Fisher, Claudio Nardi, Adolfo Natalini, Renzo Piano (for a short period), David Palterer, Andrea Ponsi, Matteo Thun, Werner Tscholl.
L. Zangheri, "The historical sites of the University of Florence", OCTAVO publisher, Florence 1996