"Rudolph was a master of sculpturing light and space, following in the footsteps of Frank Lloyd Wright, whose emotionalism he married to the cool Modernism of Europeans like Walter Gropius and Le Corbusier."
- Michael Kimmelman of the NY Times
Early Life - Paul Marvin Rudolph was born October 23, 1918 in Elkton, Kentucky. His father was an itinerant Methodist preacher, and through their travels Rudolph was exposed to the architecture of the American south.
Education - Rudolph earned his bachelor's degree in architecture at Auburn University (then known as Alabama Polytechnic Institute) in 1940 and then moved on to the Harvard Graduate School of Design to study with Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius. After three years, he left to serve in the Navy for another three years, returning to Harvard to receive his master's in 1947.
Sarasota - He is one of the modernist architecture architects considered part of the Sarasota School of Architecture. Following his studies at Harvard, Rudolph moved to Sarasota, Florida, and partnered with Ralph Twitchell for four years until he started his own practice in 1951. Rudolph's Sarasota time is now part of the period labeled Sarasota Modern in his career.
Yale - While Dean of Yale Architecture School, Rudolph taught Norman Foster, Charles Gwathmey, Richard Rogers, and Stanley Tigerman all attending the Master's course as students. Foster in particular has noted the significant influence that Rudolph had upon him.
Modernist - “I’m compelled: I have no choice about certain combinations of forms, material, space, or architectural considerations. They egg me on.”
His Influence -
"Mr. Rudolph wielded enormous influence over the direction of American architecture at mid-century. His buildings, often executed in concrete with a textured finish that resembled corduroy, were widely studied and imitated.
At the same time, and partly in reaction to his influence, the school became a hothouse for younger architects who wanted to break out of the modernist mold Mr. Rudolph had helped to form." -- The New York Times Aug. 9, 1997
Threatened projects - Currently, the Orange County Government Center is threatened with destructive changes which would make the center unrecognizable. World-wide outcry has not been able to stop the closed minded county executives from their intended architectural vandalism.
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