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Howe and Lescaze

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Works PSFS Building, at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1929 to 1932.

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Biography Howe and Lescaze

George Howe was born in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1886. He attended Harvard from 1904-7 and the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris from 1908-12. He started his Philadelphia practice in 1916 and produced a wide spectrum of eclectic designs.

William Lescaze was born in Geneva in 1896. He was educated in Geneva and graduated from the ETH in 1919. In 1920 he emigrated to the U.S. working in Cleveland and New York before hooking up with Howe.

The partnership of Howe & Lescaze was established in 1929 and lasted until 1934. Responsibility within the office was divided. Howe generated the concepts and provided direction on the projects, while Lescaze worked on detailing and design.

Instrumental in introducing the International Style to the U.S., the firm completed the first truly modern skyscraper, the Philadelphia Savings Fund Society Building in Philadelphia in 1932. This building demonstrated for the first time the tenets of International Modernism, applied to both exterior and interior detailing of a building.

Howe died in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1955. Lescaze, who also helped introduce the Modern Movement to England, died in New York in 1969.

Dennis Sharp. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Architects and Architecture. New York: Quatro Publishing, 1991. ISBN 0-8230-2539-X. NA40.I45. p78.

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