International Neo Classicism Architecture of 19th Century


Countries that represented 19th century International Neo Classicism are- France, Germany, the USA, and Britain. Neo-classicism architecture, otherwise called neoclassical, developed in the mid-eighteenth century as a response to Rococo.

Gotten from Palladian engineering, it has references to traditional Greek and Roman design. In contrast to Classical revivalism, be that as it may, neoclassical engineering will in general draw upon the rationale of whole Classical volumes as opposed to simply reusing parts.

Neo classicism in Architecture

Failure of architects to respond appropriately to the industrial revolution.

  • 19th-century architecture is historic and eclectic.
  • Among the styles that prevailed in the 19th-century.

19th-century Neo classicism– France

  • The preferment for the  Neo Classical style is understandable considering the Ecole agenda of propagating the impulse of classical architecture.
  • The previously geographically confined domain of the style now becomes widespread, in all likelihood also because of Ecole preference of classical style.
  • Further, 19th century political developments also contribute to the Neo classical style as demand for civic architecture was on the rise.
  • Above all Civic architecture demanded dignity and grandeur for which architects drew upon classical sources as these spatial and visual qualities are an intrinsic part of the classical vocabulary.

Two options were available for selection:

  1. GREEK- Democratic imagery, the style called GREEK.
  2. ROMAN REVIVAL- Imperial imagery, the style called Roman Revival.

The choice between the two allowed the state to project itself in a greek or roman continuum.

Napoleon I’s dictatorship following the French revolution laid the ground for a classical monumental approach in architecture. The architecture borrowed from Roman sources due to the latter’s imperial connotations. Napoleon launched ambitious building programmes that were characterized by large sizes.

Paris- church of La Madeleine:

Derived from the Roman temple Gigantic Corinthian order.

Paris- ­Arc de Triomphe:

Reminiscent of Roman triumphal arches Epitome of imperialism and grandeur Evolved into a 19th century Paris landmark.

Paris- addition to the Louvre:

During the 2nd empire, under Napoleon III who came to power after the 1848 uprising, the ambitious building programme continued and public works were initiated.

Above all, Visconti and Lefuel added a block in an ornate new-­ Renaissance style. Transformation of a   medieval city into a   grand   Neo Classicism conception borrowing from the Baroque. Major considerations were safety.

George U.G. Hausmann-­ haussmanisation made Paris-­ baroque conception with radial geometry

  • Broad and straight avenues called boulevards cut across the urban fabric.
  • The area around the palace cleared to open up the urban landscape to create plazas.
  • The street pattern inspired from the baroque was radial for maximum coverage.
  • The urban fabric generously interspersed with parks that aerated the density of the city.
  • New urban landmarks built more famously, Charles Garner’s- Paris Opera.
  • New boulevards lined with blocks of 4-­‐5 stories apartments for the neo-­rich with shops on the ground floor.
  • These measures facilitated troop mobility in the city including the areas traditionally considered as the hotbeds of revolt.
  • Following the outbreak of the cholera epidemic, a new water supply and sewerage disposal system installed to improve public health.
  • Gas lights installed to make the streets safe at night.
  • Charles Garnier’s Paris opera became a symbol of the neo-­rich opulence of the 2nd empire.
  • It acted as a setting for the neo-­rich in all their Neo-­opulence splendour.

19th century is just for show off

Overpowering in scale, it was a grand baroque conception centrally located in the new street structure of the city. For instance, furnished with gilded statuary and ornate chandeliers and plush furnishing.

In addition a grand spatial conception with a lavish entrance foyer, grand staircase, auditorium with a large stage area, library, doctor’s surgery, flower shop, smoking room and ice-­cream parlour.

Opera exterior and interior

The epitome of Neo ­Classicism architecture. Building during this time was in a gigantic proportion.

Henri Labrouste represented the other end of the spectrum with his libraries that embraced technology in a sensitive and aesthetic manner. In addition, Architectural education started formalizing under the watchful eye of the Ecole while transmitting the architectural impulse.

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  1. May 21, 2020

    […] complications the issue was the emergence of   Non-­European influences via colonialism as architectural styles seen as ‘exotic’ imported from colonies such as Egypt, India, and China also made their way to […]

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