Understanding the design intent through the analysis of Renaissance drawings. The digital reconstruction of an unbuilt mausoleum by Giuliano da Sangallo


Giuliano da Sangallo is one of the paramount figure emerging from the Italian architecture during the Renaissance. He was commissioned to build many buildings, leaving also an ample documentary corpus, made of sketches and more technical drawings. On some pages in the Codice Barberiniano, a rich collection of drawings stored at the Vatican Apostolic Library, Giuliano drafted a plan and a section view of a building that recent studies speculate to be a conceptual proposal for the Pope Julius II’s mausoleum. Beginning from these graphical representations, and taking into account many coeval paintings illustrating architectural details, several digital reconstructions were proposed and compared in two master thesis works, ending in a virtual computer model whose shape and proportions are expression of a plausible constructive hypothesis. Many analysis were also carried out on the model, in order to better understand the original Sangallo’s design intent.


Renaissance Drawings, Antonio da Sangallo, Digital 3D modeling, Architectural virtual reconstruction, Semantic BIM.

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