British Empire Europe Geography Institutional/cultural/religious Typology Uncategorized

The Bank of England: A Classically Inspired Stronghold of Imperial Wealth

Great Britain is one of the primary examples to observe when working to understand the reach of colonial, European imperialism. Cain and Hopkins observe that the onset of British Imperialism can be read two ways: one as the continuation of an existing system dominated by oligarchical land holders, and second as a consequence of the […]

British Empire Europe Institutional/cultural/religious

Natural History Museum | London | 1881

A Selective Curation and Distribution of Knowledge The Natural History Museum in London established in 1881 was designed by the Architect Alfred Waterhouse under the close guidance of Richard Owen, the Superintendent of the museum at the time. It exhibits a vast range of specimens and is recognized as the pre-eminent center of natural history […]

Empire Europe Institutional/cultural/religious

Recontextualizing the Cenotaph for Newton: An Idolization of Scientific Knowledge and European Empire

A 500ft sphere — the proposed resting place for English physicist and mathematician Sir Isaac Newton — was designed by French architect Étienne-Louis Boullée in 1784.1 Boullée’s Cenotaph for Newton is rooted in the architecture of multiple cultures, the project context is disregarded, and the reconstruction of nature dominates ideological understandings of the architecture. Therefore, the Cenotaph for […]

British Europe Garden/park/landscape

The Palm House at Kew Gardens: Iron, Climate Control and Commercialism

On the outskirts of London, UK, lies Kew, home to the Royal Botanical Garden and its Palm House conservatory. This significant glass house was designed by Decimus Burton and constructed by Richard Turner from 1844 to 1848, although there has been some debate as to who rightfully lays claim to the design1. The Palm House […]

Europe French Infrastructure

The Trottoir Roulant in 1900 Paris World’s Fair: controlling a spatial division

The expansion of colonies overseas and the growth of the colonial culture continued to shape the ego of Parisiens and the metropole of Paris to be a world centre and a global nexus in 1900[1]. As the last in the five most important[2] World’s Fairs held in Paris, the Paris exposition of 1900 presented a […]

Africa Europe Institutional/cultural/religious Race Settler colonialism

The Royal Museum for Central Africa, Tervuren, Belgium, 1898

A Glance at Belgium and the Misconstrued Perception of its Colonial Past The Royal Museum for Central Africa, currently referred to as the AfricaMuseum, located in Tervuren, Belgium is a colonial museum that was founded by King Leopold II at the very end of the 19th century.[1] The origin of the museum “dates back to […]

British Europe Institutional/cultural/religious

The Fictional Histories of Architecture; the Influences of Sir John Soane’s Museum

Sir John Soane was a prominent neo-classical architect in Britain between the 18th and early 19th century. Possibly his most famed building was the London townhome he inhabited during the latter half of his career. Having begun its renovations in the early 1800’s, Soane lived and worked at Lincoln’s Inn Fields until his death in 1837. During […]

British Domestic/residential Europe Garden/park/landscape

Castle Howard, Yorkshire, 1699-1801

An English landscape garden using an eclectic combination of architectural typologies and building styles. Castle Howard is an English castle and landscape garden located in North Yorkshire. From a first glance, viewers tend to draw their attention towards the magnificent splendour of the castle, without paying much attention to the surrounding landscape. The ornamental architecture […]

Europe French Institutional/cultural/religious

Bibliothèque Sainte-Geneviève: Iron and Knowledge as Materials of Colonization

Henri Labrouste’s Bibliotheque Sainte-Genevieve is a building of conflicting ideas. On its classical stone exterior the names of 810 authors inscribe a catalog of the most prominent philosophers, scientists and authors of the time. Within its walls, these same author’s works are housed amidst a modern forest of skeletal iron and glass. Just as Labrouste’s […]

Europe French

Palais Garnier (Paris Opera House): The Symbol of Imperial Power & Cultural Prestige

The Paris Opera House was designed and completed by Charles Garnier between 1861 and 1875.[1] Dripping in opulence and grandeur, ‘Palais Garnier’ is the quintessential depiction of France’s Imperial Power acquired during the Second Empire rule; representing the growing bourgeoisie population, Napoleon III’s political ambitions both domestically and internationally, and a legacy of symbology which […]

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