Steve Wassell, professor of mathematics at Sweet Briar College, will speak Saturday, April 25 at a daylong symposium sponsored jointly by Thomas Jefferson’s Poplar Forest and Lynchburg College. Jefferson considered Italian Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio an architectural mentor.
“Learning From Palladio: Renaissance Reflections at Poplar Forest” connects the 500th anniversary of Palladio’s birth in 1508 with the 200th anniversary of Jefferson’s retirement in 1809 to Poplar Forest in Bedford County.
Palladio, whose name lends itself to the architectural term “Palladian,” is the subject of a 2007 book Wassell co-authored titled, “Andrea Palladio: Villa Cornaro in Piombino Dese.”
The symposium brings together four scholars who will explain Palladio’s original context in Renaissance architecture, what makes Palladio’s villas so appealing, how Palladian architecture found its way into Virginia, and how Jefferson used Palladio to create his own personal style in America.
The day begins at 8:30 a.m. in Sydnor Performance Hall, which is located in Elliot & Rosel Schewel Hall at Lynchburg College. In addition to Wassell, speakers include Calder Loth, senior architectural historian, Virginia Department of Historic Resources; Travis McDonald, director of architectural restoration, Poplar Forest; and Delane Karalow, assistant professor of art, Lynchburg College.
Participants are on their own for lunch and will make their way to Poplar Forest by 2 p.m., where they will receive a tour of the house, grounds and wing, followed by a reception at 4 p.m.
Cost for the day’s events is $15. Students are free. Normally, admission to Poplar Forest alone is $10.
The symposium is co-sponsored by Poplar Forest and the John M. Turner Endowment in the Humanities at Lynchburg College. For more information, call (434) 534-8123 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For the complete schedule and online registration, visit the Poplar Forest Web site.