In the United States, science and technology are understood as practical drivers of society, whereas the arts are largely considered optional and apart. But exploring older societies, such as the major centers of Europe, reveals the primary role of arts and culture in the formation of cities and their civilizations. The fine and applied arts have been integral to Lyon’s development as a world city, spurring scientific and technological innovations, commerce, and urban development throughout the region’s illustrious history.
Lyon, a UNESCO World Heritage site, the second largest city in France, and its gastronomical capital, offers a unique environment where art has been an economic engine for centuries, from innovations in the silk industry to the invention of cinema. These historical innovations have shaped Lyon as a leader in the arts, industry and scientific research today.
Lyon is celebrated for its integration of art, architecture, and urban design. Its legacy of public spaces from the Renaissance to the 21st century Confluence District demonstrate how creative placemaking builds community. It is renowned in contemporary art and dance, with multiple performance venues, alternative spaces for visual arts, and art integrated in the landscape, creating a dynamic environment for learning. In 2020, students will have the opportunity to experience the Biennale de la Danse, including the Défilé Africa 2020, a citywide parade and celebration.
Meeting with leading scientists and artists gives students a window into the processes of innovation employed in both realms and provides a cross-disciplinary approach to understanding innovation. Analyzing this city’s physical evolution provides an understanding for how public spaces can foster community, sustainability, and urban development, serving as a potential model for the U.S.
Exploring this remarkable city, taking advantage of its diverse cultural offerings, and immersing themselves in unique contemporary and traditional environments, students will come away with new insights about how to apply creative problem-solving to their own studies, collaborate across disciplines, and engage in vibrant forms of urban life.
CHID 471: Art, Urbanism, and Innovation
*Note that the fees stated above do not include some additional costs, including, but not limited to: airfare, Study Abroad Insurance ($1.72/day), and personal spending money. These costs will differ by program. Be sure to read our Fees, Financing, and Withdrawal information for details about the fee structure and payment schedule.