Great Conservatories of the 19th Century & The Architecture Behind Them

Posted October 26th, 2017 by Nicole Mihalos and filed in Community, Events, Insights, latest, Lectures, Preservation Maryland
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Will you be attending?

Alan Stein says that the more he learned about building conservatories, the more impressed he became.

The co-founder of Tanglewood Conservatories with his wife, Nancy Virts, Alan will give a lecture on “Great Conservatories of the 19th Century & The Architecture Behind Them” at 6 p.m. Nov. 2 at the Rawlings Conservatory in Baltimore. Wine and light fare will be served at 5:30 p.m.

Joining Alan will be Daniel Russoniello, AIA, of Archer & Buchanan Architecture in Philadelphia. Dan has many years of experience in planning and design of institutional and commercial projects. He has worked with botanical gardens around the country and will speak about the relevance of conservatories in the modern age.

 “Conservatories are not well understood,” Alan said, “and the importance and impact they had on architecture is not well appreciated.” He said he’ll “take people back to when they were first invented, the forces behind their development … and the sociological, technological impacts they’ve had on art and architecture as well as everything from city planning to shopping.

An architect and builder, he said he always liked building things. He was asked to design and build a conservatory. “So we figured out how to build it. And then, somebody else asked for one. After the second one, we fell in love with them.” Tanglewood was founded about 25 years ago. Alan has also written a book, “Conservatories,” that covers the historical development and modern relevance of the conservatory, topics he’ll address Nov. 2.

The Rawlings Conservatory opened in 1888. It is the second-oldest steel framed-and-glass building still in use in the United States. Alan was visiting the Rawlings Conservatory some years ago and wanted to help preserve it and help it grow, hence his lecture, which benefits the conservatory.

People are still building conservatories now. The technology has really changed. Why are people still building conservatories? There must be something important about the role that they play and what they are used for,” he said.

You can learn more about that role at his talk on Nov. 2. He said, “It’s going to be really interesting.”

For information and tickets to the lecture, visit www.rawlingsconservatory.org.