Architecture is a social act and the material theater of human activity.
[Spiro Kostof]

Allen County courthouse

The best thing about being called for jury duty is the opportunity to sit in the Allen County courthouse and study the art. I can’t imagine that even the buildings in Washington D.C. are any better appointed with architectural detail and beauty. I especially enjoy this photograph of the dome, and wanted to share its richness.

Cameras are no longer allowed in the courthouse for security reasons, but my friend, Robert Pence, took this photograph and a number of others before the ban. At the Indiana/Fort Wayne/Allen Courthouse link on his website, he writes:

The Allen County Courthouse is one of only 35 National Historic Landmarks in Indiana. It was ordered in 1895 and dedicated in 1902 at a cost of more than $800,000. Designed in the Beaux Arts style by Brentwood S. Tolan and constructed by James Stewart, it replaced a badly-deteriorated 1861 brick structure on the same site. Thanks to the effort of the Allen County Courthouse Preservation Trust, it has been lovingly maintained and recently underwent a $9 million restoration of its interior design features, scagliola (faux marble) and Charles Holloway murals. The richness of detail and ornamentation are wonderful, and it’s especially remarkable that it has been restored after having been overpainted.

For many years, Bob has traveled the country to photograph interesting buildings, bridges and machinery. Many other photographs of interest can be found on his website as well. His eye for good composition and interesting detail lift his photographs from being mere pictures into the realm of fine art. Large prints can be purchased from him through his website.

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