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Hardcover | $68.95 Trade | £57.95 | 431 pp. | 9.1 x 10.1 in | May 1999 | ISBN: 9780262133487
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Romanian Modernism

The Architecture of Bucharest, 1920-1940


The return to Romania of avant-garde intellectuals from abroad during the 1920s stimulated radical changes that permeated and transformed Romanian society. During the 1930s Romania's cultural, technical, and artistic achievements rivaled those of Western Europe and in some respects surpassed them. This is the first book in English to reveal the extent to which modern architecture flourished in Romania--and is still visible as a neglected and almost forgotten past amid the contradictions of present-day Bucharest.Luminita Machedon and Ernie Scoffham focus on Bucharest between the two world wars. They show how the Dadaist Marcel Janco and others influenced the adoption of progressive policies, including the city's Master Plan of 1934, which became one of the most forward-looking plans in Europe and served the city's administration until well after the Second World War. Much of the text is based on archival research in Bucharest, on the journalism of the period, and on a small number of critical publications, both during the interwar years and since. Most of the period illustrations have never been published outside of Romania, and some are being published here for the first time. Included are photographs and drawings of buildings no longer in existence, as well as drawings of significant unrealized projects. The foreword is by Serban Cantacuzino, former editor of The Architectural Review and Secretary of the Royal Fine Art Commission in London.Published with the assistance of the Getty Grant Program.


Romanian Modernism, seduces the reader with a treasure of well preserved buildings that express the cultural values of this important movement. The architecture and urbanism of Romanian Modernism is one of the best-kept secrets of the early Modern period.”
Ligia Slovic - Rave, University of Pennsylvania, School of Arts and Sciences
“This book is little short of a revelation. It celebrates an extraordinarily rich period of architectural production which will now be much better known outside the country of origin. I put the book down itching to travel to romania, excited by the quantity and quality of the works, a canon of buildings dominated by a sense of collective joy.”
David Dunster, Roscoe Professor of Architecture, The University of Liverpool
Romanian Modernism is an original contribution in the theory and history of modern architecture in Eastern Europe. Well documented and clearly written, the book informs the contemporary reader about the particular extent of architectural creativity in interwar Romania and analizes the idiosyncratic adoption of the archetypes of the Modern Movement and the avant-garde within Romanian architecture.”
Doina Petrescu, Iowa State University
“Eastern Europe's special contribution to modern architecture before 1939 is increasingly acknowledged. Now Machedon and Scoffham add romania to the canon with a thorough and scholarly review of some impressive architecture and urban design.”
Anthony Sutcliffe, Department of History, University of Nottingham