As I walk along the street, I cant help but notice some of the big buildings around me. As I marvel at the vision of the builder, I often think about the source of this grand design.
In such times I recall what I read in the fantastic book ‘The Fountainhead’ by Ayn Rand. The book had mentioned in many ways that most buildings were inspired by famous old building styles.
As such, I decided to look up some of the Architectural styles that we find in history. The next time I see a familiar design, atleast I will be aware of something other than the old deja vu feeling
From the rise of ancient Greece until the fall of the Roman empire, great buildings were constructed according to precise rules.
In his writings, Marcus Vitruvius introduced the Classical orders, which defined column styles and frieze designs used in Classical architecture. The earliest Classical orders were Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian.
The Romans borrowed heavily from the earlier Greek and Hellenistic styles, but their buildings were more highly ornamented.
Chartres Cathedral, Church of St. Denis, Notre Dame Cathedral, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Adare Friary
During the Renaissance, after the French Style had fallen out of fashion, artisans mocked it. They coined the word Gothic to suggest that French Style buildings were the crude work of German (Goth) barbarians. Although the label wasn’t accurate, the name Gothic remained.
Filippo Brunelleschi, Michelangelo Buonarroti, Giacomo da Vignola, Andrea Palladio,
St. Peter’s Basilica, The Louvre, The Redentore, The Rotunda, The Basilica, San Giorigo Maggiore
Classical ideas were reborn in Italy and northern Europe. This period is known as the Renaissance, which means born anew in French.
Before the dawn of the Renaissance, Europe was dominated by asymmetrical and ornate Gothic architecture. During the Renaissance, however, architects were inspired by the highly symmetrical and carefully proportioned buildings of Classical Greece and Rome.
With their sleek forms and zigzag designs, Art Deco buildings embraced the machine age.
The austere shapes of the Bauhaus School and streamlined styling of modern technology combined with patterns and icons taken from the Far East, classical Greece and Rome, Africa, Ancient Egypt, India, and Mayan and Aztec cultures.
Art Deco buildings have many of these features:
Ziggurat shapes: Terraced pyramid with each story smaller than the one below it