New Classicism Cont’d.
With few exceptions, current traditional and classical architects are self-taught in the rules of historic design. This odd circumstance arose from a hiatus in traditional design instruction that occurred in American and most other Western schools of architecture around 1950.
The teaching of architectural history was even forbidden out of an overwhelming desire to make a break with the past. By 1950, American academic programs had abandoned the teaching of the architectural orders and the beaux arts principles of composition. Introduction of the modern aesthetic coincided with the economic collapse of the Great Depression in the 1930s. Little was built during this period, and the prospect of economical design offered by the simplified forms of modern architecture appealed to cash-strapped public and private clients. By the 1950s, the beaux-arts-trained architects still in practice were reaching retirement age, and the new generation of modern designers lacked their knowledge of classical design. The craftsmen who created the plaster moldings, stonework, wood carvings, and decorative ironwork were no longer needed for the creation of unornamented buildings. Without new trained classical architects, and the supporting system of trades also disapearing, the possibility of entirely losing the classical tradition became a reality.
A hybrid is today’s answer. Both rather than either-or.
More work from the Architects in New Classicism….
How about this for a hybrid. I have just ordered the Robert Adam book New Classicists: Robert Adams and the Search for a Modern Classicism which has a closeup of the capital on this house.
To be continued….