Claude Nicholas Ledoux

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Works House near Besancon, at Besancon, France, 1775 to 1779.

Theater at Besancon, at Besancon, France, 1775.

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Claude Nicholas Ledoux

(b. Dormans, France 1736; d. Paris, France 1806)

Claude Ledoux was born in Dormans, France in 1736. He was educated at a private architectural school in Paris.. Established by J. F. Blondel, the school emphasized native Baroque tradition but exposed students to English architecture. After completing his studies, Ledoux assumed several goverment positions as an engineer, mainly of bridge design.

Ledoux' dramatic style owes much to the fact that he never visited Rome. His concepts of Roman architecture were accordingly warped by the engravings of Piranesi from which he derived his knowledge. He did visit England, where he was influenced by the Palladian tradition with which he was already familiar.

Although much of Ledoux's architecture is quite practical and functional, the "visionary" aspects of his work are better known. His designs became symbols of the ancien regime and their exaggerated use of classical elements seems to anticipate post-modern classicism.

Dennis Sharp. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Architects and Architecture. New York: Quatro Publishing, 1991. ISBN 0-8230-2539-X. NA40.I45. p95.

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