Carrere and Hastings

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Works New York Public Library, at New York, New York, 1897 to 1911.

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Carrere and Hastings

(est. New York, New York 1886)

John Mervin Carrere was born to a prosperous family in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1858. He studied at the Institute Breitenstein in Grenchen, Switzerland. He also studied at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris where he met Hastings. When he graduated in 1882 he obtained a job with the New York firm of Mckim, Mead, and White

Hastings was born in New York, New York in 1860. The son of a prominent Presbyterian minister, he initially studied at Columbia University before he attended the Beaux Arts in Paris. After he graduated in 1884, Hastings returned to New York and began working for McKim, Mead and White.

In 1886 Carrere and Hastings left McKim, Mead and White to form their own partnership. In the early phase of their careers, Carrere and Hastings designed nearly all of their buildings with elaborate detailing and overscaled ornamentation. Gradually, the firm refined the work and restrained the tone. They began to borrow from late French Baroque and American Georgian sources. These later buildings show restrained classicism far different from their early ornamentation.

Carrere died in an automobile accident in 1911, just two months before the dedication of the firm's celebrated New York Public Library. This library, which the partners won in a 1897 competition, marked the apex of the firm's career. After Carrere's death, Hastings continued to run the office, maintaining the original firm name. He maintained the simple and elegant classicism of the firm's later work.

In later years Hastings associated himself with other architects in the design of large office buildings. He died in New York, New York in 1929.

Randall J. Van Vynckt. International Dictionary of Architects and Architecture: Volume 1- Architects. London: St. James Press, 1993. ISBN 1-55862-087-7. NA40.I48 1993. p147-150.

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