The Nature of Ornament

Rhythm and Metamorphosis in Architecture

Kent Bloomer (Author, Yale University)

Overview | Inside the Book

A treasure trove of ideas and encouragement for architects looking for alternatives to the severity of modernism and graceless postmodernism.

The purpose of ornament-to articulate a realm of the imagination-is as important as it is misunderstood. Kent Bloomer, an outstanding sculptor and ornamenter whose work adorns the Harold Washington Library, Chicago, Reagan National Airport, Washington, DC, and other buildings, maintains that ornament is neither pure "art" in the contemporary sense of the word nor mere decoration, but rather a category unto itself, with its own unique language. He describes the key elements of ornament, rhythm and metamorphosis, and shows their application in such figures as the foliated scroll. Illustrated with the author's evocative line drawings and photographs of ornament from ancient Greece to the modern cityscape, the book is a hymn to the riches of architectural ornament.

Book Details

  • Hardcover
  • October 2000
  • ISBN 978-0-393-73036-4
  • 8.3 × 10.4 in / 250 pages
  • Sales Territory: Worldwide

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