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Art - Essay Example

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Terre Haute, Indiana is a goldmine for such historical architectural creations. In these regards, the city contains such seminal buildings as the Condit House, the Terminal Arcade, and the Paul Dresser birthplace. Still, perhaps the most historic of Terre Haute buildings is the State Bank of Indiana. This essay examines this building’s Greek Revival architectural style through an examination of its historical, architectural, and aesthetic elements. Analysis While the Terre Haute branch of the State Bank of Indiana officially ended operation in 1859, the bank has remained a prominent piece of local architecture. The branch itself was first formed in 1834. Fig. 1 contains a current image of the bank. As the image depicts, the bank is Fig. 1 State Bank of Indiana currently occupied by Kesler & Kesler law offices. The bank implements Greek revival architecture. One considers that this form of architecture was also prominently implemented in the construction of Federal banking structures at the time. This architectural style was not only reminiscent of the Terre Haute bank, but also thematic among much 19th century American and European architecture. The Greek Revival movement was a significant movement in both the United States and Europe. In large part this movement emerged in the late 18th and early 19th centuries following a rediscovery of many of the architectural and cultural elements that pervaded ancient Greek society. Prior to this period relatively little was known about this Greek culture, outside of what was known from literary sources. In the mid-1750s, however, serious archeological expeditions began into ancient Greece. Perhaps the most prominent of these expeditions were those conducted by James Stuart. Following many of Stuart’s discoveries European elite society assumed a new interest in Greek culture. It was not long before many architectural projects were undertaken, all of them working to emulate the Greek style. Within European society the construction of these building was interpreted as a cultural shift towards a new level of sobriety and restraint and eventually as a means of asserting a new level of nationalism. It was not long before such design principles moved from European society to the United States. In this way Thomas Jefferson was one of the most seminal figures, as he is noted for owning a copy of the book Antiquities of Athens. While Jefferson himself was not an architect he perhaps made the greatest contribution to popularizing the style within the United States, as he hired Benjamin Henry Latrobe as the official surveyor for the country. Latrobe would go on to design a number of buildings in the Greek Revival school of architecture. Among the most prominent of these constructions are the Bank of Pennsylvania and the Supreme Court interior. Towards the 1830s a second Greek Revival movement emerged in the United States. During this period the Latrobe designed the Second Bank of the United States. There is the recognition then that this bank not only held a conceptual linkage to the Terre Haute building, but also a structural similarity. While a branch of the State Bank of Indiana is located in Terre Haute, Indiana, there were additionally a number of state banks created during the same time. In ...Show more
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Architectural Styles: Terre Haute, Indiana Branch of the State Bank of Indiana Introduction While in many contexts architecture simply functions as a means of designing a home or building, in other areas it takes on new and important meanings. In this way one considers that architecture often assumes a prominent artistic function, as it is through the architect’s personal vision that the design is created…
Art
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