buenos aires

buenos aires: estanislao pirovano, neotudor

Buenos Aires, Retiro, Estanislao Pirovano, Biblioteca Ricardo Güiraldes

Estanislao Pirovano’s most prolific style, Neotudor or Tudor Revival found fans around the world. I even found lots of it in Bogotá. Popular roughly during the same time as Art Deco, architects replicated simple, English country homes & often added local influences to make an eclectic mix. Pirovano excelled at combining four-centered arches, wooden doors, bay windows, fanciful columns, faux coats-of-arms & mythical/real beasts… very unique in Buenos Aires & something upper-class porteños wanted.

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buenos aires: estanislao pirovano, biography

Buenos Aires, Recoleta, Estanislao Pirovano, Escuela Argentina Modelo

As a major metropolitan area with such a rich & undeniably unique architectural heritage, much remains to be discovered in Buenos Aires. The city hides plenty of secrets. Less-transited areas often have beautiful buildings designed by formerly popular architects… who have now fallen into oblivion. Plans disappear, some works are demolished, and no one even records when they were born or when they died.

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buenos aires: encaustic tiles

Provincia de Buenos Aires, Saavedra, ayuntamiento, encaustic tiles

Mystery solved.

For years, I noticed a non-ceramic tile used on the floor of most older churches in downtown Buenos Aires. Those tiles retain their color despite heavy wear, the designs are unique & colors seem muted, earthy. Somehow I always forgot to check into it. But during a visit to the Victoria & Albert Museum in London a couple months ago, my questions were answered.

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buenos aires: art deco barrial

Buenos Aires, Art Deco, barrial, architecture, arquitectura

Although the architecture department at the Universidad de Buenos Aires officially opened in 1901, local students had already developed a habit of going abroad to study.  Returning graduates brought with them the latest trends from Europe. At the same time, many experienced European architects arrived in Buenos Aires. There was more than enough work to share between locals & immigrants; landowners wanted to increase the value of their property & the city was growing exponentially. No doubt it would have been a very exciting time to be in Buenos Aires.

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