Severus and Celer

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Works Domus Aurea, at Rome, Italy, A.D. 64.

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Severus and Celer

(First Century A. D.)

Severus and Celer lived during the first century. Nero chose them as his architect-engineers for the Domus Aurea. Their work on the Domus Aurea, a palace-villa set down in the heart of Rome, shows that they rejected traditional Roman architecture in favor of a radically new architecture which utilized arches and which focussed on interior spaces.

Severus and Celer shaped space by going beyond the limits of previous experiments to create entirely new kinds of architectural volumes and effects. Since this experimentation occurred within the emperor's palace their architecture attained great prestige.

Championed by a ruler defiant of tradition, the architecture of Severus and Celer flourished. No earlier building approached the technical and artistic solutions found in the Domus Aurea. They exhibited a genuine originality that moved them beyond earlier precedents and which allowed them to create a masterful statement about the possibilities of vaulted space.

Adolf K Placzek. Macmillan Encyclopedia of Architects. Vol. 1. London: The Free Press, 1982. ISBN 0-02-925000-5. NA40.M25.

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