The period from the late nineteenth century to the early twentieth century marks a time of great architectural growth. American architects oscillated from a stripped-down style embodied by the Chicago School’s creations to the full-blown ornamented classical seen on such buildings as McKim, Mead, & White’s contribution to the Columbia Exposition, the Agriculture Building. In Europe, the avant-garde began seeking “new ideas in decoration” (Hitchcock, 336), experimenting for a short time with modifying classical ornamentation in the form of Art Noveau decorations but eventually moving for a time into a style of planar walls, cantilevered balconies, and strip-windows. The challenge during this time, when many architects sought to synthesize technology with a new style, was to discover how heavily on the past this ‘new style’ should rely. The best radical, anti-eclectic architecture—and to some extent the architecture in general—of the early 20th Century relied on past architecture’s examples as inspiration and a starting point but increasingly extrapolated and simplified such past architecture to create a new architecture for a new age. Continue Reading >>