Work, Play and Protest: Ephemeral Architecture

Think of the historic built environment and what comes to mind are churches, palaces and grand civic buildings: architecture defined by being enduring and monumental. Yet there were also less durable structures. While the elaborate occasional architecture built for the most magnificent public celebrations has been studied by historians of art and architecture, much else remains hidden: practical and functional structures, like the booths and stalls that defined early modern commercial activity, or the pavilions, pagodas and tents that were devised for some of the period’s grandest patrons and events.
This course celebrates the hidden world of ephemeral architecture, bringing together exciting work being done on the full spectrum of temporary structures, to reveal their role in shaping the social, cultural, political, religious and economic lives of people in the past.