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Columbia University Digital Knowledge Ventures The Architecture and Development of New York City with Andrew S. Dolkart
image The Public Realm Modern Museums and Concert Halls
Lincoln Center
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Modern Museums and Concert Halls
Lincoln Center
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Cultural institutions in particular seem to go for this more traditional idea, as is evident at the Gallery of Modern Art, a very endangered building.

And is even more evident at Lincoln Center. A very traditional group of buildings, three main theaters set around a very European-inspired piazza with a fountain in the center. And each one of the main buildings—the New York State Theater, the Metropolitan Opera House, and what was originally Philharmonic Hall, now Avery Fisher Hall—how these buildings have very rhythmic arcades or colonnades on the façade, using a modern interpretation of classical and Renaissance architecture, using Italian travertine, a very traditional material for the designs.

Here at Avery Fisher Hall you can see the rhythm of the columns, but they're modern columns, they're not Doric columns or Ionic columns or Corinthian columns, they're a modern version of the column. A building designed by Max Abramovitz, which at the beginning of the twenty-first century there's a great debate as to whether this building should be demolished on the one hand, or should be declared a landmark on the other hand.

The interiors, too, are very traditional in these buildings, so that at, for example, the New York State Theater, which has the greatest of all the interiors at Lincoln Center, it's a great promenade like you might have found at the Paris Opéra. It's a great meeting place for people who are going to the opera or going to the ballet at the New York State Theater; dressed in their finery, they can promenade around and be seen and watch other people. And this is one of the great mingling spaces in New York.


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