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Terra Cotta

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Roving Rube

July 24, 2003

154-60 West 14th Street












1912-13, Herman Lee Meader
New York Architectural Terra Cotta Company. Terra cotta cladding with brightly glazed ornament. Mixed commercial use.
(Source: "Terra-Cotta Skyline", by Susan Tunick).

This IS a building (portrait) that made the pre-terra-cotta-fied Rube stop and take notice, with its spectacular floral display on a goldenrod-colored base.

Roman Revival encrusted with elaborate terra-cotta detail; inspired by the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893. When is it Roman rather than Romanesque? In the merging of the 1893 American Renaissance with Richardson Romanesque. (AIA Guide to New York City, 4th Edition, p. 192.)

People prize the AIA Guide for pithy statements like this -- in fact some keep their old editions on hand as with each new one some buildings are added and dropped...It gives the Rube an idea for a new "theme" -- a typical example of each NYC architectural style that one could give a name -- "American Renaissance" for example, unless they only mean it abstractly here -- with jpgs of the distinguishing features described in the accompanying text. Suggestions/photos of prototypical buildings welcomed!

See also: another floral detail.


































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