I started the Task, rereading my text that I wrote for the Greetings and picking out the most important words. Then I opened Alice, I chosed the Xenotheka Library and as topic of conversation I chosed “architecture”. I began my research with the author’s name: Domenico Fontana. I was interested in how important he was at his time and to discover this I wanted to know if many people have written about him. I found 220 results and I read a few of them to discover other works that have been done by Domenico Fontana in addition to the ones, that I already knew. For example, I discovered that he rebuilt the Lateran palace (Burke, Rethinking the High Renaissance).
As second I used the expression “obelisks in Rome”, because among his works there is the erection of some big obelisks in Rome and because this is the main topic of his book. In the 85 results I found some of them that refer to Augustus (Lammer Joose, The Codex Fori Mussolini), who brought some obelisks from Egypt to Rome and others that refer to Sixtus V (Rinne, The Waters of Rome) or to Fontana (Tronzo, St Peters in the Vatican). Unexpectedly I also found a book of professor Maarten Delbeke (Foundation Dedication and Consecration in Early Modern Europe), which refers to both: Sixtus V and the ancient Rome.
As third I searched the name of an important aqueduct, that was restored by Domenico Fontana under the order of Sixtus V: “Acqua Felice”. I found it interesting to see, that the name of Sixtus V appeared a lot more times, than the name of Domenico Fontana. This shows, how at that time the name of the commissioner was a lot more important than the name of the architect.
I wanted to look a little bit closer to the book Lammer Joose, The Codex Fori Mussolini, because it shows how obelisks are still very important in modern times. In fact at the time of the Fascism in Italy, it was very important to look at the great times of the Roman Empire, because in this way the people could feel proud to be Italian. Obelisks had been potent symbols of imperial power for millennia and I find it very interesting to see, that under an authoritarian government they are still used in the 20th century to show power.