Florence: The Spring of the Renaissance

In 1419 and 1421 two new buildings were started in Florence. They were the Foundling Hospital and the Old Sacristy of S Lorenzo. In 1425 Massaccio painted his Trinity, the first truly illusionist painting. All were different from the Gothic Italy of the time. Why did this happen? This course looks at the motivations for this astounding change – literary, philosophical, political and emotional. The core of this change is the architect Brunelleschi, and thus we study the multiple influences acting upon him, including Republican politics and Dante as well as buildings in Rome, Ravenna, Padua, Venice and Florence.

Independent Study Discussion Courses are for study by groups without a tutor, so there is no need to write reports. These courses were written by tutors who have now since retired from the Discussion Group Program. Some courses were written a number of years ago, and therefore contain references to events which are now more historical than current, however, all are entertaining, well-produced and worthwhile.

Course Author
Peter Ryland

Supplied Course Material
Course Booklet

Units & Pricing
7 units / $54 per person

Course Code for Enrolment

Getting Started
1. Start your Group: Anyone can start a Discussion Group – seek out some like-minded friends or put up a notice in your local library, bookshop or workplace. There are many existing groups that welcome new members. If you wish to start a new group to suit your situation WEA can help you, please note that a minimum of 6 people is required to start a new discussion group.
2. Arrange the meetings: New groups need to decide where and when to meet, and for how long – whatever best suits members' particular situations.
3. Run your Group: Choose a secretary to liaise with WEA and your tutor, a Discussion Leader to chair meetings, a reporter to take discussion notes to send to your tutor, and maybe a librarian to look after the books.

How to Enrol
1. First check the availability of your selection by contacting WEA Sydney. Bookings can be made for one year, divided into two terms – Term 1 commences in February, Term 2 in July (Groups may make forward bookings for popular choices).
2. Indicate in what order your Group wishes to study the courses, if more than one course is booked.
3. Download and fill out a copy of the WEA Sydney Discussion Group Program Enrolment Form and send it to the Discussion Group Co-ordinator to enrol.