334 BC

Choragic Monument of Lysicrates

334 BC Choragic Monument of Lysicrates
1832 Merchant's Exchange, Philadelphia
1837 Große Neugiedre, Berlin

2003.04.25 12:12
Re: liberty architecture moving to ground zero?
What do the first Stock Exchange of the USA and the Grosse Neugierde [a park pavilion at Schloss Glienicke, Berlin] have very much in common?
They both reenact the choragic monument of Lysicrates from ancient Athens.
The Merchant Exchange is designed by William Strickland, 1832, and the Grosse Neugierde is designed by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, 1835-37. Both designs represent an 'international style' of architecture at the time, specifically a style of architecture "learning from" the then recent French documentation of ancient Greek architectures/sites [sic most likely inspired by the Gran Durand], and hence seen as symbolic of democracy. The Grosse Neugierde now stands at the quondam West Berlin end of the famous Glienicke Bridge where spies were exchanged during the Cold War. The Merchant Exchange, all clad in what looks like and probably is King of Prussia marble, first stood as a beacon for the early commerce of the USA, and today houses the National Park Service's offices of Independence National Historic Park.
from A Handbook of Architectural Styles translated from the German of A. Rosengarten by W. Collett-Sandars:
"Of a less ambitious class were those monuments erected in hounor of the victorious choragus in musical competitions. In these structures the tripod, as the reward of victory, was borne in mind. An instance of this style of building is preserved to us in the choragic monument of Lysicrates which was famously known under the name of the Lantern of Demosthenes..."
There are a few other examples were Strickland/Philadelphia architecture coincides with Schinkel/Berlin architecture.
The ever evident fact that all buildings function as symbols is something that will never actually be quondam.

2003.04.26 14:53
Re: liberty architecture moving to ground zero?
A comparative study of the work of Schinkel and his architectural contemporaries in America suggests a surprising early 19th century "international" style based on the newly documented architectures of ancient Greece--it was not until the Turks were militarily pushed out of the Greek mainland by Europeans in the late 1700s that these ancient buildings were re-discovered. The "liberation of Greece" was seen politically by the Europeans as another victory for democracy, and hence the ancient Greek style of architecture became a symbol of democracy, especially in the USA. Schinkel and his contemporaries were thus great reenactors, manifesting a real reenactionary architecturism.
Is an educated blindness to symbolism today's international architectural style?




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