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Patchwork 3 – Analysis and Comparison of Both Pre-Existing and Contemporary Buildings

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Patchwork 3 – Analysis and Comparison of Both Pre-Existing and Contemporary Buildings
The Musée du Louvre and its Pyramid, and St Paul’s Cathedral with the nearby 30 St Mary Axe were the chosen topics by both members of our group. All of these buildings are iconic building within their cities, and all were designed and built with vastly different contexts and purposes in mind. In this essay we will compare and contrast the different buildings in a manner that will help us understand the juxtaposition of old and new buildings. We will also investigate what made the contemporary buildings in question switch status from controversial to widely accepted as unique and brilliant pieces of architecture. After considering the different context(s) and style(s) of the building we will present our informed personal opinions based upon our research, to reach a conclusion in accordance with the research question. Before we undertake an analysis we will quickly summarise what has been aforementioned in Patchworks 1 & 2.

The two buildings that one of the members of the group researched were the Musée du Louvre and the Pyramide du Louvre. The Musée as it stands now, was designed by Pierre Lescot for the King of France (at the time Francis I), however the designed and context of the building was radical and completely out of context with the western European style of its time (THOMPSON, Renaissance Paris: Architecture & Growth 1475-1600, p183). The style of architecture that the Louvre is of Renaissance origin, the architect; Pierre Lescot was said to have never visited Italy, and studied Italian Renaissance architecture only from third parties. Meaning his point of reference was only that of textbooks, sketches and other architects (HANSER, Architecture of France, 2006, p116). However this does not mean he didn’t manage to create a Renaissance style building, the design and style of the Louvre is typical of the Renaissance, with the over-ornamentation and relief, and not plain surfaces. These are examples of typical French Renaissance over-decoration (MOORE,



Bibliography: • Architecture of France, David A. HANSER, Greenwood Publishing Group, 2006 Extract paraphrased, page 116 • Character of Renaissance Architecture, Charles Herbert Moore, The Macmillan Company, New York, 1905 Extract paraphrased, page 200 • Without and Within: Essays on Territory and the Interior, Mark PIMLOTT, 2007, Episode Publishers. Extract paraphrased, page 255 • American Architecture: Ideas and Ideologies in the Late Twentieth Century, Paul HEYER, 1993, John Wiley and Sons. • Article published by Dr Anthony GERAGHTY 17-02-2011 http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/civil_war_revolution/gallery_st_pauls_01.shtml (Referenced on the 19-11-2011) • Christian NORBERG-SCHULZ: Baroque Architecture, published by Electra architecture, 2000 Page 194 - 195 • Jonathan GLANCY: The Story of Architecture, published by DK, 2000 Page 84 - 85 • Ken ALLINSON - Architects and Architecture of London, published by Architectural Press, 2008 Page 48 - 49

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