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Modern Architecture and Other Essays


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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments 6 Introduction 8 Vincent Scully: A Bibliographical Sketch 12 Chapter 1: American Villas: Inventiveness in the American Suburb from Downing to Wright 34 Chapter 2: Wright vs. International Style 64 Chapter 3: Archetype and Order in Recent American Architecture 64 Chapter 4: Modern Architecture: Toward a Redefinition of Style 74 Chapter 5: The Nature of the Classical in Art 88 Chapter 6: Frank Lloyd Wright and Twentieth[Century Style 106 Chapter 7: The Death of the Street 120 Chapter 8: Doldrums in the Suburbs 128 Chapter 9: RIBA Discourse 1969: A Search for Principle between Two Wars 142 Chapter 10: Where is Modern Architecture Going? 158 Chapter 11: Frank Lloyd Wright and the Stuff of Dreams 170 Chapter 12: Architecture, Sculpture, and painting: Environment, Act, and Illusion 198 Chapter 13: Le Corbusier, 1922[1965 236 Chapter 14: Introduction to The Lois I. Kahn Archive: Personal Drawings 250 Chapter 15: Robert Venturi's Gentle Architecture 260 Chapter 16: Architecture: The Natural and the Mammade 282 Chapter 17: Louis I. Kahn and the Ruins of Rome 298 Chapter 18: Everybody Needs Everything 320 Chapter 19: The Architecture of Community 340 Chapter 20: America at the Millennium: Architecture and Community 358 Bibliography of Vincent Scully's Writings 368 Index 384 Text and Photography Credits 398

Promotional Information

This book is long overdue. The absence of a comprehensive collection of Scully's work has left the field unfortunately--even suspiciously--unbalanced. His writings are important for their immediate impact and for their enduring lessons. The book will appeal to practicing architects and architectural historians, but it is also a major contribution to general cultural history that should attract audiences far outside architecture. -- Michael Hays, Harvard University I greet this book with great pleasure. Neil Levine's editorial commentary adds immeasurably to the appreciation that this and future generations will take in reading Vincent Scully's remarkable and remarkably influential writings. -- Robert Stern, Yale University

About the Author

Vincent Scully is Sterling Professor Emeritus of the History of Art at Yale University and the author of many books, including "The Shingle Style, Frank Lloyd Wright, Modern Architecture: The Architecture of Democracy, American Architecture and Urbanism", and "Architecture: The Natural and the Manmade". Neil Levine is Emmet Blakeney Gleason Professor of History of Art and Architecture at Harvard University. He is the author of "The Architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright" (Princeton) and other works.


Scully ... may find a place among the gallery of distinguished American critics ... for his historically grounded but engaged architectural criticism. That possibility is enhanced by the well-chosen essays in this volume. Not only did Neil Levine make an excellent selection, he also provided a brief but illuminating biographical essay tracing Scully's career. Better yet, the headnotes he has written for each of Scully's essays are themselves gemlike mini-essays. -- Thomas Bender The Nation Vincent Scully is surely one of the most influential architectural historians and critics of the twentieth century... None of the essays included here are available in Scully's (more than 15) published books. Interestingly, I think the selection will work well both for readers familiar with Scully and his work, as well as for those to whom his writing will be new territory... The very best thing about this book is the wonderful quality of Scully's writing itself--clear, learned and witty. -- Victoria Keller The Art Book Many of the texts, which span the years 1954 to 1999, were previously published only in magazines and have thus effectively been out of print. They cover the 20th century's mainstream trends, from the birth pangs of Frank Llyod Wright's Prairie Style to the death throes of postmodernism. All are fiercely opinionated. -- Eve M. Kahn ArtNews Scully ranks among the most influential architectural historians of the 20th century... [T]his anthology is a wonderful source for anyone with a keen interest in architecture. No one living has written on the subject in a more eloquent and compelling way. Choice Covering diverse themes from Classicism to Le Corbusier and Frank Lloyd Wright to suburbia, each essay is telling in its own right, But whatever the ostensible theme, almost every one charts a growing awareness of Modernism's complex roots and relationships to tradition. -- Jeremy Melvin Architectural Review [These essays] provide wide-ranging insights into the architectural thought of the past half-century by a central figure. -- Richard Guy Wilson Architectural Record [An] overdue and welcome anthology. Scully owes his reputation to an authorial voice that is as arresting in the classroom as the printed page. In lecture, it is the elegant literary and formal precision that startles; on the printed page, the intimate spoken quality. -- Michael Lewis Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians Reading [this book], one sees quickly why Vincent Scully (now emeritus) was such a popular lecturer, a charismatic professor whose influence extended broadly throughout the architectural profession and the academy... Scully's writing bears comparison with [the] elevation of the esthetic to an almost religious level, and his particular approach to the architectural object--which he regards ideally both as internally coherent and as somehow 'corresponding' with reality itself--is very much in keeping with the New Criticism. -- Tom McDonough Art in America

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