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Student work created in Rome on display Sept. 11 – Oct. 3 in ISU College of Design’s Gallery 181

September 09, 2015


AMES, Iowa — Projects by Iowa State University students who studied in Italy last spring will be on display Sept. 11 through Oct. 3 in the ISU College of Design's Gallery 181.

The Rome Show 2015 will showcase projects created by 37 architecture and 11 landscape architecture students who participated in the spring 2015 College of Design Rome Program. The show will include sketches, renderings, watercolor paintings, architectural drawings, photographs and multimedia videos.

An opening reception will begin at about 6:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 11, in Gallery 181, following the Department of Architecture's Premiere 15 student scholarship and awards ceremony (4:30 – 5:30 p.m.) and a guest lecture by Jill Lerner, FAIA, principal of Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates (approximately 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.), both in Kocimski Auditorium, 101 College of Design.

Smart Car with customized vinyl wrap designed by Derick Mauser, featuring a map of Rome and the Rome Show 2015 logo.

A Smart Car with a customized vinyl wrap designed by now fifth-year architecture student Derick Mauser, Rembrandt, Iowa, featuring the Rome Show 2015 logo also will be on display.

"We not only wanted to display some of the work that we did while we were in Rome, we also wanted to bring a sense of what it was like while we were there. This is in hopes that we can bring in a larger audience of students who are interested in studying abroad whether they are interested in architecture [or landscape architecture] or not," Mauser said.

Architecture students present their work in a studio review at the College of Design's facility in the Palazzo Cenci-Bolognetti in the historic heart of Rome.
Iowa State students pass through the Aurelian Wall at Porta San Sebastiano, the largest gate through the wall.
Landscape architecture students and faculty at the mouth of Orcus, the god of the underworld, in the Park of the Monsters in Bomarzo on a field trip to northern Italy.

During their semester abroad, students completed drawing and studio courses, an Italian language and culture class, and seminars in Roman Architectural History, Landscape Infrastructure and Resilient Cities, and Design: Made in Italy, which focused on different neighborhoods in Rome. The 12-mile Aurelian Wall—completed in 275 AD—that rings the area of imperial-era Rome served as the focus for all of the spring studio projects.

"My favorite part was the drawing course. We would walk around Rome or visit villas and sit and draw for hours," said fifth-year architecture student Bethanie Blake, Davenport, Iowa. "It was an amazing opportunity to really get out in Rome and experience it, not just learning about the art and culture of the city but really studying it through drawing."

In addition to their regular coursework, students' study was enhanced by extended field trips to northern Italy (Bagnaia, Caprarola, Perugia, Venice, Verona, Vicenza) and southern Italy (Baia, Naples, Paestum, Pompeii and the island of Capri) as well as day trips throughout Rome and the surrounding region. Iowa State also held a three-day design charrette about the Aurelian Wall in association with 19 students from the University of Oklahoma and about 50 Italian students from Roma Tre University at Roma Tre's campus in Testaccio.

Courses were taught by Iowa State faculty members Karen Bermann and Calvin Lewis, architecture, and Michael Martin, landscape architecture, together with Rome-based instructors Simona Albergoni, Claudia Cremasco, Carol Dienstmann, Jan Gadeyne, Francesco Mancini, Anthony Moose, Linda Nolan and Tom Rankin.

Gallery 181 is located on the first floor of the College of Design building on the west side of the Iowa State campus. Exhibition viewing hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and by special arrangement. The show also will be open from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 3. Admission is free. Additional details will be posted on the exhibition’s Facebook page.

Bethanie Blake, Architecture student, Rome Show 2015 committee, (563) 332-9173,
Michael Martin, Landscape Architecture, (515) 294-8974,
Heather Sauer, Design Communications, (515) 294-9289,