behind the scenes
The Auditorium exploits the complexity of directions and rhythms that such a program can yield. The simple semicircles of the wall ornament structure and segmental ceiling coves counteract, in plan and section, the complex curves of the proscenium arches, rows of seats, balcony slopes, boxes, and column brackets. These, in turn, play against the rectangular relationships of ceilings, walls, and columns.
This sense of the equivocal in much of Sullivan's work (at least where the program is more complex than that of a skyscraper) points up another contrast between him and Wright. Wright would seldom express the contradiction inherent in equal combinations. Instead, he resolved all sizes and shapes into a motival order--a single predominant order of circles or rectangles or diagonals. The Vigo Sundt House project is a consistent pattern of triangles, the Ralph Jester House of circles, and the Paul Hanna House of hexagons.
Quondam © 2020.05.05