Delightful Architecture Education in 19th Century


The 19th-century renaissance marked the beginning of an Architecture Education structure for imparting theorists set out to lay down the guidelines for design in a ‘scientific’ way. The birth of the academy in Architecture education took place to the renaissance.

compressed albert levy 19th century architecture photographer 01
The Art Institute of Chicago | photograph by Albert Levy Source: Monovisions


Architecture Education in 19th Century Ecole

An Ecole des Beaux-Arts (School of Fine Arts) is one of a number of influential art schools in France. In architecture, the Ecole aimed to transmit the classical style of architecture as the style for the 19th-century France.


  • The Ecole was open to all nationals between 15-­‐30 years of age. All those seeking admissions had to go through the formation level comprising 2-­4 years during which a student was taught a diverse range of disciplines.
  • Competition increased as one advanced to higher levels. In its formative years, the academy system prevailed as the academic structure whereby students attended lectures in the academy classrooms and then worked as apprentices on offices of architecture.
  • The academy system enabled the students to conceive the design of a practical room.
  • The ECOLE awarded its best student with a scholarship called the Prix de Rome. Only one scholarship and way restrict to only one French national as eligible candidates.
  • The prize constituted a five-­‐year stint in Rome at the French academy where the awardee was indoctrinated in classical architecture.
  • The student was not only studied classical architecture  on-­‐site  but also made detailed recordings in the form of drawings.
  • The student was also expected to submit a reconstruction of a classical ruin. He finally wound up the course by designing a new.
Top students of school:
  1. Charles Garnier (best student)
  2. J. J. Hittorff (German)
  3. Henri Labrouste


  • Charles Garnier, one of the most talented students to have studied at the Ecole- designed the famous 19th-century Paris Opera.
  • J. J. Hittorff, German student-designed Gare du Nord, Paris: railway station.
  • Henri Labrouste, went to Rome on his own initiative to explore classical architecture. He failed the controversial theory of polychromy that advocated the use of colour in classical architecture.

Henri Labrouste inspired by Hittorff designed Bibliotheque St. Geneive-library, Paris. He won the Prix de Rome and revalidated the theory of polychromy further went on to question the validity of the classical style for the present times.

He believed that classical architecture could not embody universal arch. Principles. He was punished for his radical thinking by the Ecole. The school was the most important institute for architectural education in the 19th century. International in character as it attracted both faculty and students from across Europe and America.

A role model for other institutions: AA, king’s college, university college, Liverpool school of architecture in Britain and MIT in the USA.

Despite the bias towards engineering and technology in architectural education in the USA, architecture schools adopted the ecole pattern of instructions.

By the beginning of the 20th century, the Ecole became a standard archetype for architecture Education universally.

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *