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Renaissance Revival / Anglo-ltalianate.
|Approximate Dates 1870 to 1930|
Simultaneous with Beaux-Arts Classicism was the closely related architectural style called the Second Renaissance Revival (circa 1890-1930), which focused on the more orderly qualities of the Italian Renaissance, rather than the often flamboyant pictorialism associated with the high Beaux-Arts style. McKim, Mead & White were the leaders in the use of this style, as well as of the movement called the American Renaissance.
Inspired by both the Italian Renaissance and the Beaux-Arts model of architectural, painting, and sculpture conceived together in unified artistic conceptions, American architects, artists, and sculptors succeeded in creating a new American Renaissance. Among numerous artists who took part in this were stained-glass innovators John La Farge and Louis Comfort Tiffany; and sculptors Augustus Saint-Gaudens, Daniel Chester French and Karl Bitter. Tiffany Studios and Herter Brothers decorated interiors lavishly. Every detail -- ornamental plaster, metalwork, lighting, mosaics, carved wooden pulpits and seating, and marble altars and rails -- was planned by the architect and associated artists.
One such collaboration that remains intact was the remodeling of the chancel of the Church of the Ascension at Fifth Avenue and Tenth Street in 1885-88. A sober, shallow chancel in Richard Upjohn's Gothic Revival brownstone church was transformed into an early masterpiece of the American Renaissance. Stanford White supervised a scheme inspired by the Italian Renaissance, featuring a large mural of the Ascension by John La Farge.
Beaux-Arts Classicism was a significant trend in synagogue architecture in the first decades of the 20th century. The first and foremost example is Congregation Shearith Israel (Brunner & Tryon, 1896-97). "Brunner justified its use by citing discoveries in Palestine of ancient synagogues -- all classical buildings," notes Samuel Gruber in American Synagogue Architecture (Common Bond Volume11/Number 1).
Many established Jewish congregations subsequently adopted Classicism because of these associations. Congregation Beth Elohim, at Eighth Avenue and Garfield Place in Brooklyn (Eisendrath and Horwitz, 1909), conveys the assertiveness of Beaux-Arts Classicism in its imposing portico placed diagonally across the corner.
Renaissance Revival is a branch of neo-classicism influenced by the palaces, fortresses, and public buildings of the Italian Renaissance like the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence and various Venetian landmarks.
Most buildings in this style have brick facades. Common features include towers or turrets, pyramidal roofs, castellations, large indented cornices, and rows of arched windows.
Architectural firms which worked in this style include Gronenberg & Leuchtag, York & Sawyer, and Emery Roth.