• Olga Wildman

Styles and Revivals

Gothic architecture

Is a style of architecture originating in 12th-century France and lasting into the 16th century.

The style appeals to the emotions. It emphasizes vertical structure and light.

Its characteristic are:

  • The structural parts of the building became its skeleton

  • the pointed arch

  • the ribbed vault

  • Flying buttress.

Gothic is the architecture of the great cathedrals, castles, palaces and town halls.

Baroque architecture

It started in the early 17th century in Italy and spread through Europe and Latin America.

The style expresses the triumph of absolutist church and state in a new theatrical, sculptural fashion. Baroque characterizes by intensity of sculptural values, new architectural concerns for color, light and shade.

Important features of Baroque architecture include:

  • theatrical use of light

  • opulence of ornaments

  • large-scale ceiling frescoes

  • dramatic central projections of the external facade

  • the interior becomes a shell for painting and sculpture

  • illusory effects with blending of painting and architecture

Renaissance architecture

It is the architecture of the early 15th and early 17th centuries. Developed first by Filipe Brunelleschi in Florence it quickly spread to other Italian cities and elsewhere in Europe.

The style emphasizes:

  • symmetry and proportions

  • geometry and regularity orderly

  • arrangements of columns

  • semicircular arches, hemispherical domes and niches

  • it was first Greco-Roman Revival

The Empire Style

It takes its name from the period in early 19th century when Napoleon I ruled France, known as the First French Empire.

The designs were inspired by symbols and ornaments from the ancient Egypt and Roman Empire.

This Neo-Classical movement was intended to projected structure, power, wealth and stability.

It was also considered "liberated" and "enlightened" architecture.

It influenced the Regency style in Britain and the American Federal style.

The style includes:

  • Strong predisposition to the ancient Egyptian and Roman ornamental motifs

  • Symbolic implications of triumph, prosperity and conquest.

The monumental, massive, rectangular furniture commonly made with the use of gilded bronze mounts and embellishments.

The details displayed a high level of craftsmanship.

Victorian architecture

The period covers or slightly overlaps the actual reign, 1837 – 1901, of Queen Victoria after whom it is named. The style is a Gothic revival.

Te style futures:

  • Asymmetrical designs were common

  • Victorian homes included towers, turrets, dormers,

  • wide wrap-around porches with decorative railings and turned posts were typical

There are also Folk and Shingle Style Victorian houses. Many homes combined the elements of several different styles and are not easily distinguishable. In the USA, highly decorated houses are sometimes called gingerbread houses.

Queen Anna Style

Was popular in Britain in the last quarter of the 19th century and the early decades of the 20th century. It refers to either the English Baroque architectural style approximately of the reign of Queen Anne after whom it was named.

Distinctive features of the style (rooted in the English style) may include:

• An asymmetrical facade;

• Dominant front-facing gable;

• Wooden or slate roofs;

• Round, square, or polygonal tower(s);

• Overhanging eaves;

• A porch covering part or the entire front facade,

• Differing wall textures, such as wood shingles shaped into varying designs, including resembling fish scales,

• Terra cotta tiles, relief panels, or wooden shingles over brickwork, etc; dentils;

• Classical columns; spindle work;

• Oriel and bay windows;

• Horizontal bands of leaded windows;

• Monumental chimneys; painted balustrades;


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