Scholarly and innovative with visually stunning line drawings and photographs, this volume provides readers with a compelling record of the unbroken pattern of reciprocal use and exchange between the countryside and the walled city of Florence, from the thirteenth century up to the present day.
Defying the traditional and idealized interpretation of the Florentine Villa, the author:
- analyzes the economic factors that powered the investment in and building of country houses and estates from the early Renaissance times onwards, as well as the ideology and the architectural and literary models that promoted the Florentine villa
- explores the area between Florence and Sesto in its history, morphology and representation
- looks at the villas existing in the area.
A contribution to the protection of the important cultural heritage of the landscape in the Florentine area and of its historic buildings, villas and gardens, this study makes engaging reading, not only for scholars and students in architecture, landscape design and social history, but also for the well informed reader interested in art, architecture and gardens.
Table of Contents
1. Origins and Development of the Villa 2. The Ideology of Villa Life in Florentine Culture and Society 3. Typological Research and Renaissance Treatises 4. The Garden: Origin and Development 5. Villas in the Nineteenth Century 6. The Shape of the Landscape 7. The History of the Area 8. Mapping the Area. Villas in the Castello: Sesto Florentino Area. Appendix: Six Villas to Visit
Grazia Gobbi Sica lives in Florence. She is the author of many books, including "Florence. A Guide to Modern Architecture" (Florence, Alinea, 1986) and "Florence. An Outline of Urban History" (Florence, Alinea, 1995). In her work she has focused on the relationships between history, architecture and the urban context. She is also a practising architect and professor of Architectural Design at the University of Florence, and has been appointed professor of Architecture and Planning at New York University in Florence. In 2004 she was curator of the exhibition "I Giardini delle Regine. Of Queens’ Gardens: the Myth of Florence in the Pre-Raphaelite Milieu and in American Culture (19th-20th Centuries)", held at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.
"In her book Professor Sica provides a comprehensive and scholarly analysis of the Florentine villa from the thirteenth century to the present day that will appeal to those built environment professionals with a deep interest in architecture, landscape design and social history… The book is well set out and illustrated with an appendix and six villas to visit." Professor Peter Swallow, Building Engineer Magazine