Currents and Contradictions.
During the 1920s America was noted for its distinguished sky-scraper architect s—Harvey Wiley Corbett, Ralph Walker, Ely Jacques Kahn, William Van Alen—but no single figure so fully embodied the currents and contradictions of the decade as Raymond Mathewson Hood. Classically trained in the United States and Paris and apprenticed in one of America's major architectural firms, Hood proved amazingly independent. In the course of his brief twelve-year career he evolved from an adherent of the Gothic style to a practitioner of modernism. Born into a prosperous, conservative family, he preferred the commotion of the urban scene to the respectability of the stately architectural firm. As one commentator remarked, during a decade in which most well-known architects were in the Social Register, Raymond Hood was in the phone book. Yet he designed and built several of the...
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