Beaux Arts in Boston

Boston Public Library

The Boston Public Library in Boston’s Copley Square owes its Beaux Arts opulence to nineteenth century architect Charles Follen McKim.

McKim studied architecture at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris and, with his partners Stanford White and William R. Mead, brought lavish French ideas to America.

With its elaborate ornamentation and arcaded gallery, McKim’s library building was called a “palace for the people.” Today, of course, the McKim Building is just one part of the expansive Boston library complex. Glass house architect Philip Johnson combined twentieth century ideas with graceful granite arches when he designed the 1972 addition, which has nine floors and a mezzanine.

Learn about Charles Follen McKim >>

Learn about Philip Johnson >>

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