Art forms

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Read Art forms, pages 221-238, and answer the corresponding study guide questions, below. You do not need to submit your answers, but this study guide will help you to prepare for the weekly quiz.

You may download a PDF version of the study guide for this section by clicking this link:

Architecture, p. 221-238


For this section, there is no video to accompany the text. To prepare for Quiz 3, please rely on the information found in the text, as well as all content found in the Week 3 module, on Canvas, including:

Content – Commentary and Study Guide: Fallingwater


  1. What three issues do architects address and integrate?




  1. What determines the evolution of architectural techniques?
  2. What was the simplest and earliest building technique?
  3. What type of construction is exemplified in the designs of the Egyptian temples at Luxor and in the Parthenon in Athens?
  4. What architectural development is exemplified in Roman aqueducts such as Pont du Gard in Nimes, France?
  5. What is the most dominant characteristic of the Hagia Sophia? What civilization built it?
  6. What is the most obvious characteristic that distinguishes Gothic from Roman or Romanesque architecture?
  7. In what primary ways did the use of the flying buttress affect the overall design and appearance of Gothic cathedrals?
  8. What does light symbolize in Gothic architecture?
  9. What new structural techniques were added to the Western architectural vocabulary between the Gothic period and the nineteenth century?
  10. What type of construction is predominant in the building of houses in the United States? Why?
  11. What two technological developments made the skyscraper possible?



  1. What is meant by Sullivan’s observation that “form follows function?”
  2. What fundamental structural and stylistic characteristic of the International Style of architecture is seen in the Bauhaus by Walter Gropius?
  3. Briefly describe Frank O. Gehry’s basic concept of architecture as exemplified in the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao?
  4. What is the name for the structural device used extensively by Frank Lloyd Wright in the design for his building, Fallingwater, to extend a beam or slab a substantial distance beyond a supporting column or wall?
  5. In their designs, architects consider “response to site”, or how a building will fit in with its surroundings. Briefly explain how the buildings of Frank Lloyd Wright differ from those of the International School architects in terms of their “response to site”.


Frank Lloyd Wright, Fallingwater, 1935, Mill Run, Pennsylvania

“Every spirit builds itself a house; and beyond its house, a world; and beyond its world a heaven. Know then, that the world exists for you: build, therefore, your own world.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson


Fallingwater, designed late in life by architect Frank Lloyd Wright, is widely considered to be one of the most important Modern buildings in the world. It is the quintessential example of what he termed Organic Architecture, where main rooms merge to form flowing, continuous spaces, and glass walls open to the surrounding wilderness. But by far the most dramatic features of Fallingwater are the cantilevered terraces, made of local sandstone, that float above the stream, below. This home, with it’s powerful response to it’s site, will continue to influence architects for generations to come.

Videos: Fallingwater

Please watch each of the following videos about Fallingwater. As you watch each video, take note of the key structural and/or design features found in the building.

This short video is an excerpt from the award-winning Ken Burns documentary.

This short video provides a detailed tour of Fallingwater given from a contractor’s point of view.


Please read this informative short essay about Wright’s masterpiece, Fallingwater (Links to an external site.)

Bauhaus Architecture: The International Style

The Bauhaus, in Germany, was the most influential design school of the 20th Century. It promoted radical experimentation in all the arts, and stressed an approach that combined crafts and the fine arts.

The Bauhaus building, itself, is very functional and was designed by International Style architect Walter Gropius in 1925-26. It both serves and expresses the needs of the Modern age. According to Gropius, “we want an architecture adapted to our world of machines, radios and fast cars.” The Bauhaus is the supreme expression of American architect Louis Sullivan’s dictum that “form follows function,” a key principle of Modern Architecture.

Frank Lloyd Wright worked for Louis Sullivan early in his career and his designs influenced many International school architects, including Gropius. But as Wright’s career progressed, his designs began to be eclipsed by those of the International Style architects. Late in life, Wright responded by integrating many of their ideas with his own. The result was a functional architecture that celebrated human craft. Instead of celebrating the work of machines, Wright celebrated the work of a person’s hands.

Video: The Bauhaus

In the design for the Bauhaus, architect Walter Gropius eliminated the load-bearing wall, and introduced exterior curtain walls made of glass and steel. As you watch this excellent video about the Bauhaus, take note of the key design principles that underpin Bauhaus style, and how they are manifested in the building.

Study Guide: Frank Lloyd Wright

You may download a PDF version of the study guide for this section by clicking this link:

Study Guide: Frank Lloyd Wright


After reviewing all the content on this page, please answer the following questions.

  1. What principle of Modern architecture was stated by Wright’s first boss, the architect Louis Sullivan?
  2. Wright’s famous concept of “Organic Architecture” stems from his Transcendentalist background. What is Organic Architecture? Briefly explain.
  3. Wright is famous for pushing the architectural envelope for dramatic effect. What is the most dramatic structural feature of Fallingwater?
  4. Wright challenged his apprentices by asking them, “Can you say, when your building is complete, that the landscape is more beautiful than it was before? Briefly describe least three features of Fallingwaterthat emphasize the human connection with nature.




  1. Midway through his life, Wright’s popularity was eclipsed by International Style architects who believed in the world of the machine. In contrast, what did Wright believe in?
  2. The design for Wright’s masterpiece, Fallingwater, was drawn in less than three hours. Identify and describe four architectural features which make it unique and inspiring.
  3. Structural features:
  4. Floorpan:
  5. Response to site:
  6. Use of materials:


Last Updated on October 6, 2019