Showing posts with label Architecture. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Architecture. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Adobe Architecture

Bam Citadel -  Photo: Wikipedia
Some of the earliest structures were Adobe architecture. Adobe is a material made from sand, clay and straw, dung or other fibrous materials.

The adobe is then formed into bricks using frames and dried in the sun. Similar to cob or mud bricks, the structures become extremely durable. They are used mainly in hot, arid climates because they remain cool in the summer and release
heat very slowly in the winter.

The same mixture, without the straw, is used for mortar in placing the dried adobe bricks together to form a structure. Some cultures even figured out they could utilize lime-based cement for the plaster to protect against the wet months.

The thickness of the adobe bricks is key in the architecture. It is what essentially keeps the structures cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

The largest structure ever erected from Adobe was the Bam Citadel. But it suffered serious damage from an earthquake in 2003.

The Huaca del Sol in Peru is another grand adobe structure that was created from over 100 million signed bricks.

The world’s largest adobe architecture structure is the citadel of Arg-e Bam, erected as late as 500BCE, possibly earlier.

The area of Bam Citadel is 180,000 square meters and is surrounded by walls 6-7 meters high and 1815 meters in length, all out of Adobe. When the gates to the city were closed, no human or animal could enter. The city was self-contained with well access, gardens and cattle all within the walls.

The adobe architecture was a little different when it came to putting a roof on the structure. Typically roofs were assembled from lengths of wood or metal. Then rows of dried adobe bricks are laid over the top of a support structure and plastered into place with more adobe.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Prairie Style Architecture

Frank Lloyd Wright's Darwin D. Martin House, in Buffalo, NY. - Photo: Wikimedia
If you are looking for an interesting, and beautiful style of architecture for a house or smaller sized commercial building, then you may want to look towards the prairie style architecture.

The prairie style architecture was drafted originally in the loft room of the Steinway Piano Company building in Chicago, Illinois in the 1890’s. The Prairie Style was popular from the 1900’s through about 1912.

Probably the most famous follower of the Louis Sullivan teachings on Prairie Style architecture was Frank Lloyd Wright.

Also termed Prairie School Architecture, the Prairie style was and is most commonly found in the Midwestern United States.

Prairie style homes are distinct in their design. Created with horizontal lines, flat roofs with overhanging eaves and windows grouped in horizontal bands.

Some of the most famous Prairie Style homes are the Darwin D. Martin House in Buffalo, NY, along with the Guggenheim Museum in New York City and Fallingwater in Pennsylvania.

There is one thought that stands out above the rest, the Robie House. Located on the campus on the University of Chicago, it is the quintessential example of the Prairie Style Architecture.

Illinois still holds the greatest number of Prairie Style Architecture. Frank Lloyd Wright lived for a time in Oak Park, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. Here you will find street after street of Prairie Style Architecture.

Prairie homes were made to function efficiently in the prairie climate. The horizontal lines were thought to match those of the native prairie landscape. The interior was designed to be multifunctional and utilizing the suns natural light and natural air flow throughout the house. The Prairie Style architecture is by far some of the most beautiful you will find in the Midwest.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Victorian Architecture

The Carson Mansion - is a Queen Anne Victorian mansion at 143 M Street in Eureka, Northern California
Photo: Wikimedia
In Eureka, California sits one of the most beautiful examples of Victorian Architecture. The Carson Mansion, with its 18 rooms and excess of 16,200 square feet was constructed between 1884 and 1886. The cost of this structure was an incredible $80,000.

It is a mix of every major style of Victorian Architecture and is the most written about, most photographed house in California, possibly the U.S.

Victorian Architecture is known by many other names and can be of various styles. The building period of Victorian Architecture overlaps the reign of Queen Victoria, for whom it was named.

These structures are highly decorated and so aptly nicknamed Gingerbread houses for all of their pieces and gingerbread type scrollwork and ornamentation.

Interestingly enough, in the U.S., Toledo, Ohio is recognized as having one of the largest collections of Victorian homes, East of the Mississippi. Boston is noted in the National Register of Historic Places as having the oldest Victorian neighborhood in the U.S.

But of course, the U.S. isn’t the only place where these intricate creations of Victorian Architecture can be found. Notable Victorian-era cities range from London to Glasgow to Melbourne and to New Orleans.

Typical Victorian Architecture is grand in size, containing many functional rooms and passageways throughout the structure. Most throughout the country are not only fancifully decorated with intricate woodwork throughout, but they are usually known for their grand color schemes, both on the exterior and interior. Large inviting rooms welcome guests into their depths.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Baroque Architecture

Baroque Castle - Photo: Max pixel
A very early style of architecture, but a very beautiful style is Baroque architecture, which began in the early 17th century in Italy.

Taking the renaissance architecture and modifying it to a new theatrical, sculptural fashion, Baroque architecture became a very fanciful, extravagant style of structural design.

While the Renaissance style was designed for the well to do of society, the Baroque architecture initially played into the wealth and power of the Roman Catholic Church.

The concerns were for light, shade and color intensity and Baroque found its secular expression in grand palaces first in France, then throughout Europe.

If you were to visit France today, the Chateau de Maisons would be one of the highlights of Baroque architecture.

One of the most famous though of the Baroque architecture pieces is the St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. It is the most prominent building inside Vatican City. Topped with its towering dome, it is a notable feature in the Roman skyline.

Baroque structures are grand in size and ornaments. As baroque moved through Europe, it eventually took on the look of European Colonialism.

Greenwich hospital in London, England is another beautiful example of Baroque architecture. Founded in 1694 as the Royal Naval Hospital for sailors, the Greenwich hospital is famous for its Baroque Painted Hall, which was painted in honor of King William and Queen Mary.

The chapel is an awesome example of not only Baroque architecture but of baroque art with its high gold painted ceilings.

Friday, January 5, 2018

American Colonial Architecture

Domestic architecture of the American colonies and of the early republic - Photo: Wikimedia
A trip through the U.S. will grant you sights of beautiful architecture, from coast to coast. During the 1780’s through the most popular style of architecture was the American Colonial.

Built mostly by wealthy Anglo Americans, the houses afforded several distinct styles depending on local. Also known as Colonial Georgian, these homes were the earliest style to grace the U.S. colonies.

A prime example of early American Colonial architecture is called a Saltbox. What the Saltbox basically is is a wooden frame house with a high-pitched roof that slopes down to the back.

Its flat front has two stories while the back of the house has only one, making the sides unequal, but distinctly looking just like an old salt box which was a wooden box with a lid which salt was kept.

A simple name for a simple style of home. Generally, the chimney was centrally located, making the house, from a distance, look like a box with a lid and handle to lift it off.

Other defining characteristics of American Colonial architecture are the square, symmetrical shape, the front door placed directly in the middle of the houses front and the even, straight line of windows throughout.

Inside the front door are usually an entryway and a staircase. All rooms branch off these. Typically they were constructed of brick with wood trim, but with homes like the Saltbox, they were also timber frame homes constructed with woodworking joints instead of metal nails, since they were costly. Saltbox homes were also finished with wood siding.