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How did the Industrial Revolution paly int o the rise of modern architecture

Rachel Cai 1 / -  
Jun 13, 2019   #1

Industrialization and architecture

The Industrial Revolution is marked by the invention and the application of the machine. Therefore, the Industrial Revolution is also named as the Age of Machines. According to Gardiner (1968), "The Industrial Revolution was another of those extraordinary jumps forward in the story of civilization." It is no exaggeration to say the Industrial Revolution brought profound impact of people's life. However, the Industrial Revolution also plays an important role in the modern architecture and there are three significant effects of the Industrial Revolution on architectural aspects: materials, modernism, and eclecticism.

Firstly, new materials produced in the Industrial Revolution period provided more possibilities for modern architecture. During the Industrial Revolution, a large number of steel, concrete, and glass were produced for the low cost and the wide range of uses. At the same time, architects found that the high compressive strength of concrete, the light weight of glass, and the high tensile strength of steel helped to construct a higher, stronger, and lighter building. For example, the Eiffel Tower is 300 meters high and the splendid parabolic curved form is the symbol of Paris. As the main building material of the Eiffel Tower, steel breaks through the limitations of the height and the span of the traditional building, which made the Eiffel Tower become a well-known representative of modern architecture. On the other hand, at the beginning of the 18th century, workers found a more efficient method to extract pure iron out of ore to increase the production of iron and enhance the use of iron in construction. Therefore, because of the emergence of new materials in the Industrial Revolution period, modern architecture had made a great progress in the construct form, quantity, and quality of buildings.

Secondly, modernism is a necessary effect of the Industrial Revolution. In order to maximize profits, modernism became the optimal solution for people at the end of the 19th Century. According to Crowder (2013) "Modernism is not a style but a loose collection of different ideas which follows the same underlying principles: a rejection of history and applied ornament; a preference for abstraction; and a belief that design and technology could transform society." Therefore, there is no doubt that the characteristic of modern architecture is minimalism and functionalism. Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1886- 1969) is a great pioneer of modernist architecture and greatly influenced by the trend of modernism. For the Farnsworth House, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe kept the original texture of industrial materials to increase the change of light and shadow, and composes several simple geometrical forms as the main structure of the building to create a free space. This house designed with a minimal framework of structure and free flowing space which applied to the idea of "Less is more" (Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, 1947). Modernism is the inevitable result of the development of the era to a certain extent. The simplification and abstraction of things provide a new perspective for architecture style and guide architecture to adjust to the development of the world.

Lastly, eclecticism is a significant effect of the Industrial Revolution which. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary (2019), the eclecticism is defined as: "the theory or practice of an eclectic method." The Industrial Revolution makes the exchange of information more convenient. At that time, architects could know more information about different architecture styles from different place in the world. Therefore, the eclecticism is about the combination of several different historical styles and new styles. The Paris Opera is one of the masterpieces of eclecticism architecture. Additionally, the Paris Opera is an important monument of the second empire of France. The facade of the theater imitates the late Baroque style of Italy, is mixed with complicated carvings, and has a great influence on the architecture of European countries. As the statement of Meeks (1953) that "eclecticism reaffirm the importance of innovation and new forms to architecture." Eclecticism plays an important role of modern architect for the unique style and tolerance.

In conclusion, The Industrial Revolution not only betters the life of the average worker but also promotes the emergence of new social trends. According to Beard (1874-1948) "The Industrial Revolution has two phases: one material, the other social; one concerning the making of things, the other concerning the making of men." Although materials, modernism, and eclecticism are three different effects of the Industrial Revolution, the expression of each are completely different. However, each effect brings new things to modern architecture and all of the three effects made a huge contribution to the development of modern architecture.

Beard, Charles A. (1874-1948). The industrial revolution

Crowder, M. (2013). Industrialization and the Beginnings of Modernism

Gardiner, S. (1968). The Industrial Revolution: The History and Legacy of the Rapid Scientific and Technological Advancements that Ushered in the Modern World

Meeks, C. (1953). "Creative Eclecticism." Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians

malenitass 1 / 1  
Jun 14, 2019   #2
@Rachel Cai

When you said: ..., in my opinion need some changes like: ... brought a profound impact to people's life.

And, when you talk about the modern architecture, I think you do not need use the just Modern Arquitecture

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