Seven days of the Triumphal Arch: Winterim 2012

The wall of triumphal arches.

Just after the New Year, the ICAA welcomed eleven students to the 2012 Winterim Professional Intensive.  This year’s group came from seven different states and was comprised of practicing architects, architecture students, interior designers, two doctors (a first, for sure), and even one Winterim alumnus ‘11.

A plaster cast model of the Roman arch at Aosta served as inspiration for the seven-day Intensive.  Through the lens of monumental triumphal arches, the instructors were able to provide students with a sweep of classical architecture from antiquity to today.

Appropriately, this included a tour of the arch in Washington Square Park and the one at the helm of the Manhattan Bridge.  (Unfortunately, this also included having to walk around the city on probably the coldest day we’ve had in New York this winter.)  Despite the weather, the group traipsed downtown and stood at the Washington Square arch while Michael Djordjevitch spoke about the history of the park and its surroundings, from Henry James’ Washington Square to Jane Jacob’s triumph over Robert Moses.

Winterim at Washington Square Park

The group then made its way to the Manhattan Bridge to examine the masterful triumphal arch by Carrère & Hastings.  Unhappily, this beautiful structure serves as the mouth of a highway, though it could not be more obvious that it is meant to be admired while standing with two feet firmly planted on the ground.

At the end of the walking tour, with the images still fresh in their minds, Michael Djordjevitch assigned the design problem to the students: an imaginative reconstruction of an attic for the Roman arch at Aosta.

Students worked on their designs during the Orders & Elements Design Studio taught by Michael Djordjevitch and Steve Bass, while the rest of the week was consumed by a rigorous course of study: Literature and Theory of Classical Architecture with Marvin Clawson; Traditional Drafting by Hand with Seth Weine; A Comparative Study of the Orders with Martin Brandwein; Architectural Wash Rendering with Andy Taylor; Linear Perspective with Patrick Connors; Theory of Proportion with Steve Bass; Observational Drawing with Angela Cunningham.


The week ended with a vernissage on the evening of Sunday, January 8.  An informal jury (Richard Cameron, Barbara Eberlein, and Joel Pidel) selected four top designs and awarded the students with a copy of The New York Public Library published last summer by W.W. Norton.

After a full week studying the great masterpieces and immersing oneself in the language of classical architecture, the work that students produce is always distinctly inspired.  When everyone—students, instructors, and staff alike-can finally take a step back and appreciate the designs tacked to the studio wall and the sketches arranged on the desks, there is a sense of awe at all that has been accomplished over just a series of days.

Congratulations to the students whose designs were recognized by the jury:

Jennifer Gibson
Bruce Lanier III
Wendy Posard
Joseph Tralongo

Congratulations and many thanks to the talented group of eleven we had this year:

Pablo I. Altieri (New York, NY)
Troy Barney
(Hampton, VA)
Paul Estipona
(Elmhurst, NY)
Jennifer Gibson
(Philadelphia, PA)
Bruce Lanier
(Birmingham, AL)
AJ Michel
(New York, NY)
Robert O’Grady
(Pittsburgh, PA)
William Pordy
(New York, NY)
Wendy Posard
(San Anselmo, CA)
Lisa Teters
(Fort Worth, TX)
Joseph Tralongo
(West Palm Beach, FL)

Intensives serve as the beginning of a journey, and one that we hope our students, past and present, will continue with us, wherever they must return to when the short (but intensely scheduled!) week is over.

Winterim 2012

For information about our next Professional Intensive, please visit our website.

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Welcome 2012

Paul Gunther

A message from our President, Paul Gunther

Happy 2012—a year that promises to be one of challenge tempered by constant and dynamic opportunity. We are so glad that you are alongside to forge the ICAA’s path whatever wider cultural and economic context is unfolding.

We hope you have received your copy of The Classicist No. 9 as is due you; copies are now available for sale on the web site along with all our Classical America Series in Art and Architecture books and related recommended resources in print, and, of course, increasingly online.  (We are delighted to relay the news from just yesterday that our friends at Dover Publications will soon reprint another sought-after ICAA title, Fences, Gates and Garden Houses: A Book of Designs and Measured Drawings by Carl Frederick Schmidt; soon it will join our Series roster.)  If you do not know how to access The Classicist online please refer to my December greeting or contact us directly about how to do so.  No 10 is in the works with a publication goal of year’s end.

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Calder Loth

by Calder Loth
Senior Architectural Historian for the Virginia Department of Historic Resources and a member of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art’s Advisory Council.


Figure 1, The Baths of Diocletian, Rome (Loth).

In his famous Parallèle de l’Architecture Antique avec la Modern (Paris, 1650), the French amateur classicist, Roland Fréart de Chambray (1606-1676), illustrated numerous classical orders from specific ancient sites.[i] Most of these were observed by him during the years 1630-1635 when he lived in Rome. Among them was a late and distinctive version of the Doric order found in fragments in the vast complex of the fourth-century Baths of Diocletian.[ii] The fragments have since disappeared, and the order remains known only through the reconstruction illustration in Fréart’s treatise. (Fig.2) The distinguishing features of the order are the Apollo masks with their surrounding rays in the metopes, and the dentils with their vertical slits.[iii] Another defining detail is the cyma recta or S-curved echinus in the capital, which Fréart shows ornamented with foliage.  While not unique to this order, a cyma-curved echinus is extremely rare in ancient versions of the Doric. The overwhelming majority of surviving examples employ an ovolo echinus, either ornamented (usually with eggs and darts) or plain.

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The Arrival of The Classicist No. 9

Paul Gunther

A message from our President, Paul Gunther

I am pleased to report that The Classicist No. 9 is due here next week from the printers and will be available immediately. It is magnificent, as you will soon discover as one of its early readers. Delivery to all members at the levels of Contributor and Individual ~ Professional and above will proceed with dispatch. Besides our rigorously-tended database of all English-speaking schools of architecture and design, the chapter locations will receive copies for their events and new constituents bearing in mind the peer-reviewed journal’s national (and occasionally beyond…) content and editorial embrace. On an ongoing basis No. 9 (like Nos. 6, 7 and 8) will be offered for sale via our partners at the Antique Collector’s Club at We rely on them for this manner of permanent availability, as we simply do not have the capacity to do so on our own.  However a limited number of Nos. 4 and 5 can be purchased directly by calling the membership office and ordering over the phone or by visiting Sadly No. 1 has long been sold out, although there are selections available via the web site found here.

This is a publication that examines contemporary classicism and the scholarship of cultural memory enlivening it at its finest across disciplines. It is a countrywide publication that derives from and is written for all. The chapters can and must present it as their own as it is. Read more »

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Holiday Gift Ideas from the Classicist BookShop

Just in time for the holidays, the ICAA is offering a discount on select titles from the Classicist Bookshop. Consider one of these titles for the book-lover on your holiday gift list:

The New York Public LibraryThe New York Public Library: The Architecture and Decoration of the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building

by Henry Hope Reed and Francis Morrone, with photos by Anne Day. Newly refreshed in 2011, this elegant edition celebrates the Library’s 100th birthday. $20 for ICAA members and employees of professional member firms; $40 for non-members.

Peter Pennoyer Architects

by Anne Walker. This beautifully illustrated volume features twenty of the firm’s residential projects. $20 for ICAA members and employees of professional member firms; $40 for non-members.

The Elements of Classical Architecture

by Georges Gromort is a must-have for any practitioner or enthusiast. $10 for ICAA members and employees of professional member firms; $20 for non-members.

Parks, Plants, and People: Beautifying the Urban Landscape

by Lynden B. Miller is the perfect gift idea for the park and garden enthusiast on your gift list. $25 for ICAA members and employees of professional member firms; $35 for non-members.

IIke Kligerman Barkleyke Kligerman Barkley HOUSES

with a foreword by Robert A. M. Stern features twenty-one of the signature residential works of Ike Kligerman Barkley Architects. Limited signed copies available. $30 for ICAA members and employees of professional member firms; $40 for non-members.

The Architecture of Delano & Aldrich

by Peter Pennoyer and Anne Walker examines exemplary projects from the firm of Delano & Aldrich. $35 for ICAA members and employees of professional member firms; $45 for non-members.

The Row House Reborn: Architecture and Neighborhoods in New York City, 1908-1929

by Andrew Scott Dolkart is a must-read for fascinating New York City history. $35 for ICAA members and employees of professional member firms; $45 for non-members.

All prices include sales tax and shipping. To purchase at the discounted rate, please call (212) 730-9646, ext. 104. Limited quantities available.

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Calder Loth

by Calder Loth
Senior Architectural Historian for the Virginia Department of Historic Resources and a member of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art’s Advisory Council.

Flemish bond is a frustrating misnomer because this brick bond is not native to Flanders or even nearby sections of France and Holland. However, it does appear on late medieval buildings in scattered areas of northern and central Europe, particularly Poland. A rough but conspicuous early example is seen on Munich’s famous Frauenkirche, built 1468-88.  (Figs. 1 & 2) How and from where it was suddenly spread to England in the early 17th century has not been determined.[1] Yet its association with buildings in the style of contemporary structures in the Low Countries has resulted in its being termed ‘Flemish’ bond.  In contrast to English bond, garden wall bond, or even haphazard bonds, which are functional bonds, Flemish bond is a decorative bond, one that lends visual quality to a wall surface. The bond’s alternating stretchers (sides of brick) and headers (ends of brick) form a pleasingly patterned regularity, requiring skill to execute. The discussion below focuses mainly on the use of Flemish bond in Virginia since many well-preserved early examples remain there. (And admittedly, I am more familiar with Virginia brickwork than that in other states). The subject is an extensive one and space in this blog limits me to highlights.

Figure 1: Frauenkirche, Munich, German (Loth)

Figure 1: Frauenkirche, Munich, Germany (Loth)

Figure 2: Frauenkirche, detail of south wall (Loth)

Figure 2: Frauenkirche, detail of south wall (Loth)

It is generally held that the Dutch House, also known as Kew Palace, in London’s Kew Gardens, marks the first prominent use of Flemish Bond in England. (Fig. 3) Most authorities state that the house was built in 1631 for Samuel Fortrey, a London merchant of Dutch descent.[2] Its Baroque-style curvilinear gables clearly show a Dutch influence even though its Flemish bond is not characteristic of 17th-century Dutch architecture.[3] Moreover, the recent restoration of the Dutch House, which included a historically accurate coating of redwash, makes the dwelling’s Flemish bond hard to see. Nevertheless, from the middle of the 17th century Flemish bond became the brick bond of choice for architecturally refined buildings throughout England, particularly for their façades. Read more »

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