Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1720-78) ranks among the most inspired interpreters of classical architecture. In over a thousand prints, Piranesi explored what he termed the “magnificence” of Roman architecture. His was an inclusive view of Roman design and ornament, recognizing merit in examples that stood outside the classical canon, while at the same time encouraging the creation of new and original forms. To paraphrase Sir John Soane, Piranesi not only was intimately acquainted with what the ancients had done, but endeavored to learn from their works what they would have done. Please join us for a cocktail reception at the Driehaus Museum followed by a lecture by John Pinto.
John A. Pinto is the Howard Crosby Butler Memorial Professor of the History of Architecture, Emeritus in the Department of Art and Archaeology at Princeton University. A Fellow of the American Academy in Rome, Pinto’s research interests center on architecture, urbanism, and landscape in Rome, especially in the eighteenth century. Among his publications are The Trevi Fountain (1986), Hadrian’s Villa and its Legacy (1995, co-authored with William L. MacDonald), Speaking Ruins: Piranesi, Architects and Antiquity in Eighteenth-Century Rome (2012), and City of the Soul: Rome and the Romantics (2016). Pinto was a Trustee of the American Academy in Rome from 1996 to 2012. He currently serves on the Senior Fellows Committee for Studies in Landscape Architecture at Dumbarton Oaks and the Board of Directors of the Foundation for Landscape Studies.