Retrospective 2013. Historic Houses of Romania – Case de Epoca

As 2013 is drawing to a close, here is a less than 2 min length video of my architectural history photographs, which I believe shows the essence of my activity this year. The images were used throughout 2013 as cover photos for my Historic Houses of Romania facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/casedeepoca).

Autumnal sky and clouds rushing over Antim Monastery, Bucharest

This is a small sample from Bucharest’s environmental identity: one of the city’s old churches, Antim Monastery, with its majestic cupola towers set against the beautiful autumnal blue sky, peppered with fast moving patches of clouds, so peculiar to this latitude, mid-way between the North Pole and the Equator, in continental Europe.

Bucharest ant superhighway

This is a sample of Bucharest’s environmental identity, a metropolis in south east Europe located midway between the North Pole and the Equator, with a temperate continental climate. We had quite an Indian Summer this October 2012 in Romania’s capital, with some apple or chestnut trees flowering again, or ant colonies, such as is the case here, being highly energized to look for food or change the place of their colony, when they should normally prepare for hibernation. Is this another proof that there is a climate change process going on?

Video-invitation to architectrual tour in Matei Basarab area of Bucharest, Sunday 22 April

 

Details at http://wp.me/pFpRa-3Gt

Book by emailing v.mandache@gmail.com or using the comments section of this post. You will be informed of meeting place on booking.

I look forward to seeing you at the tour,

Valentin Mandache, expert in Romania’s historic houses (tel: 0040 (0)728323272)

Video-invitation to Historic Houses of Romania architectrual tours: Staurday 14 and Monday 16 April ’12

Details at http://wp.me/pFpRa-3F5 and http://wp.me/pFpRa-3Fj

Book by emailing v.mandache@gmail.com or using the comments section of this post. You will be informed of meeting place on booking.

I look forward to seeing you at the tour,

Valentin Mandache, expert in Romania’s historic houses (tel: 0040 (0)728323272)

Video-invitation to Historic Houses of Romania week end architectural tours: 7 & 8 April ’12

Book by emailing v.mandache@gmail.com or using the comments section of this post. You will be informed of meeting place on booking.

I look forward to seeing you at the tour,

Valentin Mandache, expert in Romania’s historic houses (tel: 0040 (0)728323272)

Historic Houses of Romania: video-retrospective 2011

see it full screen, 720p HD

The video is a short metaphoric retrospective of Case de Epoca – Historic Houses of Romania blog’s activity in 2011. I shot were over 15,000 frames, posted more than 200 articles, read by on average 15,000 unique site visitors per month, and undertook over 50 architectural tours with participating public that came from all over the world. On the whole, it has been an exciting year! For 2012 I plan more tours in Bucharest and the rest of Romania, another batch of out of the ordinary architectural history articles and as a novelty- architectural history courses.

Yours,
Valentin Mandache, expert in Romania’s historic houses

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

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 Contact page of this weblog.

Neo-Romanian style mansion in California: a design rendering

There is just a handful of videos on Youtube or other similar video hosting websites on the subject of the Neo-Romanian architectural style, and it seems, without modesty :), that a majority of them are on my Historic Houses of Romania channel. In that regard it has been really gratifying when I recently discovered on Youtube a very interesting animated rendering of a house with prominent Neo-Romanian features, designed by Eric Lind Associates, a US firm form Granite Bay, greater Sacramento, in California. I like the multitude of arched windows flanked by short Byzantine columns, the large veranda resembling the cloister of the medieval Wallachian churches, and the square profile towers and chimney stacks inspired from the the c17th – c19th cula buildings, the fortified houses of the yeomen of Oltenia, in south-west Romania. The mansion is designed for the Californian market and is excellent to know that the Neo-Romanian style has an echo there, even if only at the drawing board level. Click the image bellow to access the video rendering!

Neo-Romanian style mansion, design rendering by Eric Lind Associates, Granite Bay, California. CLICK THE IMAGE

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

I endeavour through this periodic 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.

The Zodiacs of Bucharest: Photomontage, Video & Slide Show

Art Deco style zodiacal signs decorating the Zodiac Fountain of Bucharest, built in 1935, Carol Park area. (©Valentin Mandache)

Exquisite design zodiacal signs are present on two of the most iconic Bucharest architectural creations: the Zodiac Fountain from the Carol Park and the Zodiac apartment block on Calea Dorobanti street. The fountain was built on the occasion of the 1935 Bucharest Fête, a month long popular festival with great allegorical processions celebrating the Romanian national identity, organised by the government, under the patronage of King Carol II that imitated similar events organised in Mussolinian Italy or Hitler’s Germany, countries whose ideologies started to exercise a powerful influence in Romania of that period. The architect of the fountain is Octav Doicescu and the graphic representations in black and white mosaic pieces are the work of Mac Constantinescu. The style of the design is a modernist Art Deco, although the structure displays some obvious historicist features. The second such iconic building examined in this post is the Zodiac apartment bloc, located in the Dorobanti area, a very imposing edifice erected in 1946, after the end of the devastating Second World War and in the last year of King Michael’s reign, only months before the communists forced him to abdicate in December that year. The building is an excellent modernist design by the architects Radu Dudescu and Mircea Marinescu, decorated with sixteen panels representig the signs of the zodiac, creations of the artist Constantin Baraschi. The whole assembly is a testimony of the intensely creative atmosphere present in Bucharest just after the war that soon got strangled by the oncoming communist dictatorship. The image above shows a photomontage composed from close up images of the signs on the Zodiac Fountain. The fountain together with the Zodiac building are also discussed in the video that follows the text and are also presented in the slide show bellow.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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

I endeavor through this series of daily 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.

Fin de siècle villa in Campulung Arges: architect identification controversy – Video-analysis

In this video I analyse whether or not the architect Ion Mincu, the initiator of the Neo-Romanian style, is the designer of Villa Mirea in the town of Campulung Arges, southern Romania. I discuss the characteristics of Mincu’s architectural design by analysing two of his most important creations- Lahovary House and the Causeway Buffet in Bucharest and conclude that Mincu could in fact be the designer of anther edifice in Campulung, namely Villa Apostol Mirea (notice the similarities between the names of the two buildings, a fact which possibly led to the actual confusion in identifying the architect). The photograph is by Daniel Bobe, a native of Campulung; the old postcards- private collection.

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

I endeavor 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 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.