cod. 1007719

Academic year 2022/23
2° year of course - Second semester
Federica OTTONI
Academic discipline
Restauro (ICAR/19)
Teorie e tecniche per il restauro architettonico
Type of training activity
40 hours
of face-to-face activities
4 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Integrated course unit module: ANALYSIS OF EXISTING ARCHITECTURE

Learning objectives

The main aim of the course is to present to the students the materials,
the building elements, the techniques and the static principles of the
historical constructions. Moreover, the course aims at introducing the
students to the understanding of the buildings through the analysis of
meaningful historical architectures.
Knowledge and understanding capabilities:
At the end of the course, the student will have a wide view on the
materials and techniques used in the construction of historical buildings.
The student will develop the ability of “reading” and surveying
autonomously the main features of a historical building, from the
building, material, structural point of view.
Communication skills:
During the course, the student will improve its correctness of speech,
with specific reference to the technical terms connected to historical
Learning ability:
The methods of buildings “reading” acquired during the course and first
applied on some meaningful examples, will allow the student to
understand further historical architectures.


A basic knowledge of Architectural History is required to understand and
follow proficiently this course, as well as some knowledge of Euclidean
geometry and of mathematics.

Course unit content

1. Introduction to the comprehension of historical buildings.
2. “Utilitas, Venustas, Firmitas” and economy.
3. Measurement units; Geometry, proportions and styles: architecture’s
4. The materials of historical architecture (stones, bricks, mortars,
concrete, wood, iron)
5. Masonries.
6. IQM and quality of masonry.
7. Timber structures
. arches and flat-arches, vaults, domes, frames.
9. Fundations.

Full programme

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The pdf presentations of the lectures are available on the course’s
website and they represent the main reference to follow and study the
course’s topics.
Another reference is the book:
- Gianni V. Galliani, “Tecnologia del costruire”, Alinea Editrice, 2002
The following books are suggested:
- S.A. Curuni, “Guida allo studio diretto dell’edificio storico – appunti di
anatomia dell’architettura” Ed. PLUS, Pisa University Press, 2009
- M.C. Torricelli, R. Del Nord, Paolo Felli, “Materiali e tecnologie
dell’Architettura” Laterza 2009
- Iori Ivo, “Minimi strumenti di Scienza del costruire”. Edizioni MUP, Parma
- Mario Como, Ivo Iori, Federica Ottoni, “Scientia Abscondita”, Marsilio
- G. Pizzetti, A.M. Zorgno Trisciuoglio: “Principi statici e forme strutturali”,
UTET Torino 1980.
- M. Salvadori, Perché gli edifici crollano, Mondadori, 1970

Teaching methods

the course is composed of traditional lectures (tought class), also with
Powerpoint presentaions, and reviews.
The course is divided in two parts: the first one concerns materials,
geometry, equilibrium and building techniques; the second one will focus
on some meaningful buildings taken as exxamples to inspect their
building, static and aesthetic characteristics.
Some direct surveys can be made by the students to real case studies of
historical buildings.

Assessment methods and criteria

During the course, the surveys made by the students are controlled and
verified. The exam consists in the delivery of comments on the survey carried out in the other modules, with specific insights into the contents learned during the course of the module itself. The final evaluation will take place in an integrated manner with the other two modules of the course.

Other information

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