Roman Art & Architecture
- Function over form (they would have liked our freeways more than our statues)
- Arches + Concrete = awesome!
- (Concrete = more durable than wood, easier than stone)
Evolution of the Arch Pre-historic people stuck big rocks in the ground
Evolution of the Arch Egyptians spaced thick pillars close together to support heavy ceilings
Greeks stuck with post-and-lintel, but with thinner columns and thinner cross-beams.
Romans figured out the arch
Parts of an Arch
Pont du Gard (50 AD)
- “ Bridge of the River” (French)
- The world’s tallest surviving aqueduct.
- A 30-mile canal that supplied 9,000,000 gallons of water per day to Nimes! (That’s 100 gallons per second!)
- The biggest arch in it is 80 feet across!
Other Roman Aqueducts
The Colosseum (80 AD)
- Showcases Roman’s innovations – brick, concrete, and rounded arches
- Killing = a spectator sport!
- Used Greek columns (ground level = Doric, 2nd story = Ionic, 3rd story = Corinthian) and Greek Statues to decorate
- Men v. Men, Men v. Beasts, Beasts v. Beasts
The Pantheon (27 BC/126 AD)
- Math + Engineering + Slaves
- A Roman temple dedicated to all gods
- Dome was the largest in the world until the Renaissance
- 142 feet high, 142 feet wide (is a sphere!)
- Made from concrete that goes from 23 feet thick at start to 5 feet thick at top
- Oculus (“eye”) is 30 feet across and is the only light source
Rome’s Greatest Column
- Patterns and pictures made with geometrically-cut tiles
- Have been around for a while (as old as 3000 BC!)
- Romans had a lot (house decorations, street art, building décor, etc.)
- Pompeii was covered with them