Frank Furness: Architecture in the Age of the Great Machines

(Author) (Foreword by)

Product Details

$59.95  $55.75
University of Pennsylvania Press
Publish Date
7.2 X 0.9 X 10.0 inches | 1.8 pounds

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About the Author

George E. Thomas is a cultural and architectural historian who serves as codirector of the Critical Conservation Program at Harvard's Graduate School of Design. His books include First Modern: Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and, with David B. Brownlee, Building America's First University: An Architectural and Historical Guide to the University of Pennsylvania, both available from the University of Pennsylvania Press; and Frank Furness: The Complete Works with Michael Lewis and Jeffrey Cohen. He is also lead author of the Buildings of Philadelphia volume in the Society of Architectural Historians' series Buildings of the United States.


"Frank Furness's architecture brought together two seemingly opposed realms: one derived from the newly developing industrial machine, the other from nature. There is a fantastical juxtaposition of ferocious hissing, steam-driven piston power coupled with lyrically delicate ornament derived from leaves and stems of plant life (and, almost paradoxically, implanted in stone by the then newly invented steam-powered chisel). George Thomas's book places Furness's architecture in the apocalyptic climax of this moment when nature and industry could be thought of as one organic, dynamic whole."--Turner Brooks, Yale School of Architecture

"By returning Frank Furness to his central position at the birth of Modern architecture in America, George Thomas helps us understand the depth of the American roots of Modernism . . . [and] reminds us of how many significant turning points occurred when insights into contemporary life, culture, and technology became a spring board for creative design. His Modernism--and Frank Furness's--is not merely a theory but a mirror held up to society."--Alan Hess, from the Foreword