Petre Antonescu (born June 29, 1873, Râmnicu Sarat - d. April 22, 1965, Bucharest) was an architect, pedagogue, urban planner, historical monument restorer and Romanian academician who imposed himself among the leading personalities of the Romanian architecture school , marking the architectural activity of the first half of the 20th century by promoting a neo-Romanian architectural style. In 1945 he was elected member of the Romanian Academy.
Petre Antonescu was born in Râmnicu-Sarat in 1873, where he also attended primary school, but he finished high school in Bucharest. Starting in 1893, he studied architecture in Paris. Returned to the country, he started a fruitful activity in education, in the field of preservation and restoration of architectural monuments (being a member of the Historical Monuments Commission), urban planning of the Capital of Romania and, respectively, the realization of architectural works.
Petre Antonescu is the author of monumental public buildings (administrative palaces, banks, ministries) and of dwellings, all of which are buildings whose architecture has developed, applied and developed original architectural, plastic architectural styles, giving an unprecedented interpretation to the forms and elements of Romanian architecture old.
Among its most representative works are the Bucharest City Hall, built between 1906 and 1910 and completed in the years 1945, the former building of the Craiova Administrative Palace (1912-1913) and that of the Investment Bank of Bucharest (1915 - 1923).
In all these monumental buildings, there are numerous original and interesting interpretations of porches, loggias, window and door frames, gates and other elements of traditional Romanian architecture. In the same spirit, many private dwellings were built in Bucharest, sector 1, Cismigiu, among which are those on the streets of Apolodor and Dumbrava Rosie and Ion Brezoianu Street, Victor Eftimiu, or the buildings that sheltered the Simu Museum.
It is also remarkable in these works the monumentality tendency of the architect, controlled with much refinement, in order not to lead to exaggerations. A large apartment building, on Kiseleff Road number 12, built between the two world wars, with a façade dressed almost completely in apparent brickwork, demonstrates with virtuosity the adaptation of traditional plastics solutions for new functions.
Together with the interventions of the Romanian architecture, Petre Antonescu succeeded equally in the security and mastery of the adaptation in a contemporary spirit of the historical styles present in the monumental building of the Faculty of Law of the University of Bucharest, built between 1933 and 1935. Located in a generous space green, the broad composition, dominated by the great central aula, draws classic and classic inspirational planimetric and plastic principles, well adapted to the later purpose of the structure, but weighted in terms of compositional equilibrium.
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