Hudson County Community College Skyscraper Building in Manhattan Art Discussion

1-The Woolworth Building in downtown Manhattan’s neo-Gothic style is a refreshing architectural site in a city filled with skyscrapers. By selecting this style, Frank W. Woolworth and the Irving National Exchange Bank proceed to create a gothic marvel that would characterize the Manhattan sky for decades. As one of the first tallest skyscrapers in the world, the owners needed a unique and artistic structure that could stand out. More importantly, it was a rare opportunity for the owners to revive and ignite medieval gothic architecture that reigned in the past. By aping the cathedrals built in Europe during the gothic era, this modern building preserved gothic history and art. Another example of a building that borrowed an older style is the Cathedral of Saint Mary Major, in Lisbon, Portugal. Initially built in the 12th century, it got destroyed by earthquakes. The building’s reconstruction and renovation adhered to the Romanesque architecture style. The Lisbon Cathedral’s restoration was done to preserve vital aspects of this unique style as depicted in the image attached.

2-The Woolworth building is one of the first American skyscrapers and was built by architect Cass Gilbert. It has a height of 792 feet. He designed the building in a Neo-Gothic style because it represented European gothic cathedrals. It was supposed to resemble the Victoria Tower but Gilbert did not like the religious imagery and instead he used 16th century Gothic style to ornament the building. I like how he wanted to save some of the Gothic style architecture and place it in a modern setting. An architectural example from the 20th century that shared an older style is the Washington National Cathedral. It has such a rustic feel to it. There is stained glass inside which is really a good reminder of the artwork used back in the Gothic times.

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