Analysis Of Pierre Francastel's Impact On Architecture

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Pierre Francastel and Sigfried Giedion were both analytical in their accounts of industrial revolution’s impact on architecture via the usage of mass-produced material such as iron and glass. However, the two accounts indeed took very different stands on their opinion of the machine and the progression of architecture.
Bibliothѐque Sainte-Geneviѐve was indisputably one of the most remarkable examples of iron and glass applications during that era, agreed by both Francastel and Giedion. However, in the eyes of Francastel, the usage of iron and glass to construct classical forms were considered more backward, as he felt the architect did not envision a new style; one that maximised the nature of the newly-popularised materials , hence the lack
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This set off a drastic change within the construction community, with the introductions of materials such as reinforced concrete. Concrete, as well as steel, allowed one to design much differently than before; perhaps a good example would be along the lines of Le Corbusier’s five points of architecture, with open plans and the usage of pilotis instead of load-bearing walls. This caused the focus to be shifted to non-technological aspects, such as production and cost efficiency . Designs weren’t the only things that evolved; a new era of 20th Century problems had followed …show more content…
I believe the main issue at hand were the differing beliefs between the two camps of idealism and realism (perhaps also between functionalism and traditionalism), which Francastel was trying to address, and something Viollet-Le-Duc deliberated on. Viollet-Le-Duc sparked the Art nouveau movement in France, due to the influence of his book, Entretiens sur l'architecture, in 1872. In the book he is quoted as saying “…use the means and knowledge given to us by our times, without the intervening traditions which are no longer viable today, and in that way we can inaugurate a new architecture. For each function its material; for each material its form and its ornament.” Viollet-Le-Duc envisioned architecture to be directly influenced by the current state of scientific discovery, and to use such technology and materials in forms that were appropriate to industrial production, similar to what I mentioned in a previous paragraph regarding Francastel, while contradicting Giedion’s idealist

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