Architectural Style Guide

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     Architectural Styles any buildings constructed in Manitoba during the 19 th  and 20 th  centuries bear the imprint, or at least the influence, of certain architectural styles or traditions. Some are faithful to a single style. Many more have elements from several different styles and are referred to as eclectic. Even more only hint at the basic architectural style from which they are derived; we might refer to them as vernacular versions of the style. Understanding the  basic characteristics of architectural styles is a useful way to begin seeing buildings more critically. Such an understanding also helps in describing a building, in determining its age, or in assessing its architectural value when compared with other buildings of the same style. This guide is an introduction to some of the most significant architectural styles employed during the  past 150 years of Manitoba’s history. There are two other sections—building traditions and types, and a glossary of architectural terms—that constitute a complete set for reference. This section, Styles , describes those sophisticated styles that were most influential in this province’s architectural development. Many buildings, often those not designed by formally-trained architects, do not relate at all to these historical styles. Their designs are often dictated by utility, and may be influenced by the designer’s familiarity with other  buildings in the district. Such vernacular buildings are sometimes quite particular to a region. The styles discussed here stem from various historical traditions.    Georgian    Gothic Revival    Second Empire    Italianate    Romanesque Revival    Queen Anne Revival    Classical Revival    Late Gothic Revival    Chicago School    Prairie School    Georgian Revival    Tudor Revival    Bungalow    Art Deco    Art Moderne    International  A section of Main Street in Winnipeg, shown in an archival photograph from about 1915, reveals the variety of architectural styles that animated Manitoba streetscapes: on the right a massive Chicago School office tower and on the left a highly detailed Italianate storefront. (Courtesy  Archives of Manitoba) M   These styles were all generated elsewhere—England and the United States principally—and were  popularized in Manitoba by local architects and their clients. A flourishing architectural press made such designs available, even without travel, to people living away from the cradles of ancient architecture or centres of design innovation. Styles evolve and the range of interpretations of any style can be considerable. In Manitoba, at such a great distance from the srcins of many of these styles, the gap  between the pure style and local interpretation may  be quite large. This guide thus highlights those Manitoba buildings that best illustrate each style. Moreover, the dates that have been used to describe when each style was most popular in this province do not always correspond to the dates during which the style flourished elsewhere. Although this guide uses some of the most common names and groupings to organize styles, other architectural style guides may use different names and different organizing criteria that are equally acceptable. View of Main Street in Winnipeg, c. 1915 (Archives of Manitoba). Even a small collection of buildings of broadly similar architectural character contains a wealth of different styles .    GEORGIAN (1820-1870) History he Georgian style was developed from the simplification of classical , Italian Renaissance  and Baroque  architecture. It was most popular in Great Britain during the reign of the first three King Georges (1714 to 1820) from which it derives its name. A vernacular interpretation of the style, in which detail was minimized, became a very  popular architectural expression throughout Great Britain. In Manitoba, where the vernacular tradition was used, it was closely associated with the buildings of the Hudson's Bay Company and those built by Company employees who retired to the Red River Settlement. It became popular again in the 1910s and 20s. Characteristics - the style is characterized by a symmetrical , or  balanced, box-like massing  centred on a formal entranceway - rooms are grouped around a central hall plan - houses are 1 to 2 1/2 storeys  high - the roof is either a steeply pitched   hip roof   or a gable roof   without eaves   - dormer  windows are common - façades  are often of 5 bays  with two windows on each side of the central doorway - double-hung windows  are straight-topped with 6 to 12 panes in each sash  - doors often have sidelights  and/or a transom  light - in Manitoba these buildings are normally constructed of stone or log - while not common in Manitoba, the style can have classical  detailing such as a pedimented  projecting pavilion  with pilasters  or columns  and a Palladian window .   Schematic illustration of an imaginary Georgian domestic building, showing key characteristics coordinated with numbers on the drawing.   T    GOTHIC REVIVAL (1850-1900) History he Gothic Revival was one of the most enduring and influential architectural movements of the 19th century. Based upon a revival of medieval architecture, especially that of England and France, it passed through successive  phases and influenced most building types. Coming to Canada from Great Britain in the early 19th century, in its earliest phase it was largely a picturesque  style characterized by applied delicate ornament. The English author and architect A. W. Pugin (1812-1852) was very influential in giving  both a sense of moral purpose to the Gothic Revival and a better understanding of Gothic detailing and structural systems. The English writer John Ruskin (1819-1900) encouraged a widened range of sources for the style, such as Venetian Gothic architecture. The style as used towards the end of the century is frequently referred to as High Victorian Gothic. Its evolution into the 20th century is described in the section on Late Gothic Revival.   Characteristics - the style is characterized by the pointed arch , which can be in a number of forms, as well as buttresses , spires , pinnacles  and carved ornaments - it often has a complex arrangement of steeply pitched  roofs highlighted with intricate details - details such as mouldings , tracery  and carved ornament are heavy and sometimes purposely coarse - polychromy  is common as are the combination of different materials or varying proportions of details and openings - houses are either symmetrical  with a centre gable  or asymmetrical  and in the shape of an L - heavy bargeboards  and corbel tables  are common Schematic illustration of an imaginary Gothic Revival building, showing key characteristics coordinated with numbers on the drawing. T
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