Nickerson Lecture
The First American Skyscrapers: Chicago & New York

Thursday, April 17
6 p.m.
Museum Members $5; Public $15   Buy tickets

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Perennial rivals Chicago and New York are noted for their majestic skylines, first defined in the 19th century.  Its island location encouraged Manhattan architects to build vertically.  The Great Chicago Fire of 1871 drew established and aspiring architects to a city that required complete rebuilding. 

Barry Lewis will contrast the work of New York’s Richard Morris Hunt, Cass Gilbert and McKim, Mead & White and Chicago’s Louis Sullivan and Burnham and Root.  The evolution of the New York skyscraper from the first elevator buildings of 1870 to Rockefeller Center and the Seagram Building will be discussed.  Chicago’s 10-story Montauk building of 1882, designed by Burnham and Root, was also a significant contribution in skyscraper design and will be placed in the context of American skyscraper engineering.

This lecture is part of the Driehaus Museum’s 2014 Samuel M. Nickerson Lecture Series, a program which serves to situate the Nickerson Mansion within the context of social artistic developments of the period and against the wider background of America’s Gilded Age.

Doors open at 5 p.m. for any attendees who would like to explore the Museum and its collections. The lecture begins at 6 p.m. As space is limited, advance reservations are highly recommended.

Barry Lewis is an architectural historian who focuses on the evolution of modernism in European and American architecture of the 18th to 20th centuries.  Educated at the University of California at Berkeley, the Sorbonne, Paris, and the New School for Social Research in NYC, he teaches at Cooper Union Continuing Education and has recently retired after 23 years of teaching at the New York School of Interior Design.  Lewis co-hosted the Emmy award nominated 42nd Street, Broadway and Harlem as well Brooklyn, Greenwich Village and Central Park video walks for WNET Channel Thirteen.  His tips on Paris sites will be included in the soon to-be-released City Secrets: Paris.

Please note that in exchange for your reservation and/or ticket, you have authorized the Driehaus Museum to photograph, record, film, video tape, or otherwise use your likeness, performance, image, and/or voice for use in general and/or program-related Driehaus Museum promotional materials. If for any reason, you do not wish to be photographed, please provide your name(s) at registration that evening.

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