Visiting Scholar Laurent Baridon presents his research.

The story of Dinocrates, as recounted by Vitruvius, describes the encounter between this architect and Alexander the Great, his renowned patron. Through the multiple distortions it underwent, the dissemination of this narrative in the theory of architecture, has acquired the status of myth. Considered as such, it presents a polysemic narrative through which the spectrum of meaning reveals the outline of the figure of the architect while broaching questions concerning his relationship to the patron, power, nature, and the mechanical or liberal arts. The myth makes explicit, therefore, the conditions and ambitions of a new professional status at the moment of its emergence in the Renaissance. The texts as well as the images participate in this intellectual construction, for at the same time, the first portraits of this new figure appear. The long genealogy of these representations, be they true of false self-portraits, resonate the myth of Dinocrates in evoking the political prerogatives and social responsibility of the architect: moreover, they incarnate them. One of the essential characteristics of the definition of this new figure resides in effect, in his wish to generate a perfect society.

Laurent Baridon received a Ph.D. in art history from the Université Marc-Bloch in Strasbourg, France. His doctoral dissertation “L’imaginaire scientifique de Viollet-le-Duc, genèse d’une pensée architectural” was completed in 1992. The scope of his research covers the history of ideas of art and artists, western architecture from the 18th to the 20th century and the representation of the human body in the 19th century. He is the co-author with Martial Guédron of Corps et arts: physionomies et physiologies dans les arts visuels (Paris; Montréal: L’Harmattan, 1999).

Laurent Baridon was a Visiting Scholar at the CCA in 2002-2003.


Sign up to get news from us

Email address
First name
Last name
By signing up you agree to receive our newsletter and communications about CCA activities. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, consult our privacy policy or contact us.

Thank you for signing up. You'll begin to receive emails from us shortly.

We’re not able to update your preferences at the moment. Please try again later.

You’ve already subscribed with this email address. If you’d like to subscribe with another, please try again.

This email was permanently deleted from our database. If you’d like to resubscribe with this email, please contact us

Please complete the form below to buy:
[Title of the book, authors]
ISBN: [ISBN of the book]
Price [Price of book]

First name
Last name
Address (line 1)
Address (line 2) (optional)
Postal code
Email address
Phone (day) (optional)

Thank you for placing an order. We will contact you shortly.

We’re not able to process your request at the moment. Please try again later.

Folder ()

Your folder is empty.

Please complete this form to make a request for consultation. A copy of this list will also be forwarded to you.

Your contact information
First name:
Last name:
Phone number:
Notes (optional):
We will contact you to set up an appointment. Please keep in mind that your consultation date will be based on the type of material you wish to study. To prepare your visit, we'll need:
  • — At least 2 weeks for primary sources (prints and drawings, photographs, archival documents, etc.)
  • — At least 48 hours for secondary sources (books, periodicals, vertical files, etc.)