The works of Clinton L. Vivian, Architect, of Ithaca
The works of Clinton L. Vivian reveal how an underlying Neoclassicism derived from an appreciation of "Colonial" American architecture could be exploited in combination with a Victorian sensibility for technology and functional planning to create an architecture that was both modern and traditional without significantly compromising either. Although this is not especially evident in his institutional works, Vivian's commercial works do reveal a decided Neoclassical frame of reference, particularly after the dissolution of his partnership with Arthur N. Gibb, and a willingness to incorporate new structural materials and to express their inherent capabilities within the design. Vivian's appreciation of Neoclassically-inspired American architecture of the colonial and early republic periods is most pronounced in his residential works, but here as well, this appreciation is tempered by a willingness to deviate from traditional models as necessary to achieve functionally appropriate plans. The result has been a remarkable collection of works that have remained strikingly fresh and vital. This thesis also presents biographical information about Vivian, as well as information regarding his architectural training in the office of William H. Miller of Ithaca, New York, and the scope of his practice which was centered around Ithaca and which spanned nearly forty years, from the early 1890s until his death in 1930. The three appendices that accompany the thesis provide documentation and locational information for all known works by Vivian.
Master of Arts
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