Quaint Little Paris style house in Ploiesti

Little Paris style house from the La Belle Époque period in Ploiesti (©Valentin Mandache)

This Thursday I undertook a short trip to Ploiesti, the centre of the Romanian oil industry, 60km north of Bucharest, and managed to photograph a sample of its great multitude of architecturally remarkable houses, built in large part by money generated by its oil wealth and also from Ploiesti’s traditional role as major market town in the region. Its urban development and architectural mix resembles at a smaller scale the historical trajectory followed by Bucharest. One of those noteworthy building, which I encountered there, located on the Independentei Street, is presented in this post’s photographs. It is a picturesque Little Paris style (what I call the French c19th historicist architecture provincially interpreted in Romania of the La Belle Époque period) dwelling, dating probably form the second part of the 1890s or the first years of the c20th at the latest, which seems quite well preserved. This type is often encountered within the territory of the Old Romanian Kingdom (pre-WWI Romania, which did not contain Transylvania and other territories gained after the war). Its general outlines remind me of an evocative Bucharest house from an impressionist style painting, about which I wrote a past article, see this link. I like its compact, box-like appearance, with rounded corners, central wrought iron doorway and ample shell-shape awning. The roof boasts two protruding round attic windows, an ornamental crest and spiky details dotting the drain trough at regular intervals. The decorative register for this type of house is generally inspired from the rococo style panoply, often containing interesting Art Nouveau elements for edifices built at the turn between the c19th and c20th. The Art Nouveau style bits in this particular example are seen in the glazed shell-shape doorway awning and parts of the design of its wrought iron gateway and street fence, fragments of which are presented in the photomontage bellow.

Wrought iron doorway with shell-shape glazed awning, Little Paris style house dating from the late 1890s or early 1900s, Ploiesti (©Valentin Mandache)

Details of the Art Nouveau style elements adorning the gateway of a Little Paris style house (1890s - 1900s), Ploiesti (©Valentin Mandache)

***********************************************

I endeavour through this series of periodic articles to inspire appreciation of the historic houses of Romania, a virtually undiscovered, but fascinating chapter of European architectural history and heritage.

***********************************************

If you plan acquiring or selling a historic property in Romania or start a renovation project, I would be delighted to advice you in sourcing and transacting the property, specialist research, etc. To discuss your particular plan please see my contact details in the Contactpage of this weblog.

Neo-Romanian style “medieval” gateway

Bellow is presented an early 1920s Neo-Romanian style gateway designed in the “citadel” variety of this order. Its impressive aspect is given by the heavy brick and mortar fabric, austere decorative arches and a severe looking metal door imagined as the “harrow gate” (portcullis) of a medieval fortress. During its heydays, in the inter-war period, the structure provided the visual focus for the entire house it embellishes. Today, by contrast, the gateway is in a decrepit state and nearly invisible to the passers by, as can be ascertained from the first photograph after the text. In order to better convey to the readers its former glory and impressiveness, I posted another two processed images of this structure (see bellow)- an inverse colour and gradient green filter photograph and a posterised image with a sunburst at its centre, which somehow bring from “beyond the grave”, in the manner of a ground radar, the features and message that the architect intended for this gateway.

Neo-Romanian style gateway, early 1920s house, Rosetti area, Bucharest (©Valentin Mandache)

Neo-Romanian style gateway (inverse colour & gradient green filter), early 1920s house, Rosetti area, Bucharest (©Valentin Mandache)

Neo-Romanian style gateway (posterised photograph with sunburst at its centre), early 1902s house, Rosetti area, Bucharest (©Valentin Mandache)

***********************************************

I endeavour through this daily series of articles to inspire appreciation of the historic houses of Romania, a virtually undiscovered, but fascinating chapter of European architectural history and heritage.

***********************************************

If you plan acquiring or selling a historic property in Romania or start a renovation project, I would be delighted to advice you in sourcing and transacting the property, specialist research, etc. To discuss your particular plan please see my contact details in the Contact page of this weblog.

Neo-Romanian Style Gateway Featuring the Rope Motif

An exquisite Neo-Romanian style gateway assembly featuring the rope motif that originates in late medieval Wallachian church architectural decoration. The rope motif and the two solar discs present at the base of the gate opening are also ancient ethnographic motifs peculiar to the Romanian peasant art and domestic architecture. Late 1920s type house, Gara de Nord area, Bucharest. (©Valentin Mandache)

***********************************************

I endeavor through this daily series of images and small articles to inspire appreciation of the historic houses of Romania, a virtually undiscovered, but fascinating chapter of European architectural history and heritage.

***********************************************

If you plan acquiring a historic property in Romania or start a renovation project, I would be delighted to advice you in sourcing the property, specialist research, planning permissions, restoration project management, etc. To discuss your particular plan please see my contact details in the Contact page of this weblog.

Daily Image 13-Mar-10: Peasant Wooden Gate for Town House

An exquisite and well preserved wood-carved (oak) gateway, exhibiting ethnographic motifs found in the villages of southern Romania, embellishing a mid-1930s Neo-Romanian style town house. Sincai area, Bucharest. (©Valentin Mandache)

***********************************************

I endeavor through this daily image series to inspire appreciation of the historic houses of Romania, a virtually undiscovered, but fascinating chapter of European architectural heritage.

***********************************************

If you plan acquiring a historic property in Romania or start a renovation project, I would be delighted to advice you in locating the property, specialist research, planning permissions, restoration project management, etc. To discuss your particular plan please see my contact details in the Contact page of this weblog.