CRITICAL REVIEW


    Nicolae Ghika-Budesti represents the excellent example of the historical monuments restorer-architect and of the professor that dedicated his entire life to educating the youth. In the Historical Monuments Committee he undertook a tireless site activity, coordinating and evaluating various works, reports and estimates. Furthermore, the experience accumulated in the field and the direct research led him to finding some answers regarding the influence sources of the architecture in Muntenia. All of these contributed to the writing of his grand work dedicated to the "Evolution of the Architecture in Muntenia and Oltenia" and to some lectures held in the country and abroad.
    The architect dedicated a major part of his career to the expansion of the University of Bucharest and to the construction of the National Museum of Art. The number of the houses designed by him in Bucharest is relatively small, mostly designing for his own family and for his loved ones, members of the Stirbey family.
    The Ghika-Budesti style is unmistakable and it bears a strong Moldavian imprint: the exposed brick, the glazed ceramic disks, the neo-gothic window and door frames. The turret-tower of a monastic inspiration, the horseshoe-arch, the "saw-tooth" decoration and the geometrical motifs are ever present. The horseshoe-arch is especially particularized, presenting a curly brace at the top. The chromatic of his constructions’ facades combine nuances of scarlet-red with the green of decorative ceramics and the light nuances of the simili-stone plaster. In conclusion, one can observe a synthesis of the architectural elements of Muntenia and Moldavia, which led to the Ghika-Budesti personal style. His searches regarding the Romanian art Byzantine and folk motifs resulted in a few examples of interior decorations, designing furniture as well. (Oana Marinache, 2015)
 


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    BIOGRAPHY


    (Iasi, December 22nd 1869 - Bucharest, December 16th 1943)
     
    Academic/specialized studies
    1877-1881 - Primary studies in Lausanne, Switzerland
    1881-1884 - High-school studies at the Monge School in Paris;
    1889-1893 - The courses of the School of Roads and Bridges in Bucharest;
    1893-1901 - Architecture courses at École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris, the workshop of Professor Victor Laloux (1850-1937).
     
    Didactic activity:
    1910 -1938 - Professor at the School of Architecture.
     
    Professional activity (affiliations, administrative positions, committees):
    1905-1906 - Architect of the Ministry of Culture and Public Instruction;
    1906-1943 - Architect and chief of the Technical Service, consultant of the Historical Monuments Committee;
    1930 - Honorary member of the Romanian Academy;
    1932-1935 - Chairman of the Society of Diplomat Architects.
     


    PROJECTS


    Finished projects
    Architecture projects:
    1905-1906 - The "Schimbare la Fata" Church, a project realized for the 1906 National Exhibition in Carol I Park, str. Cutitul de Argint nr. 1, Bucharest;
    1906-1941 - The National Museum, today the Museum of the Romanian Peasant, Sos. Kiseleff nr. 3, Bucharest;
    1908-1909 - Stirbey-Rosetti house, today the Excellence Centre in Image Study, U.A.U.I.M., str. Mihail Moxa nr. 5, builders: eng. Cesare Fantoli and arch. F. Hoeflich;
    1909 - The Ghika-Budesti houses, str. Sevastopol nr. 8-10, Bucharest;
    1909 - The "Sfantul Vasile cel Mare" Greek-Catholic Church, entrepreneurs: arch. C. Cora and Bossy, str. Polona nr. 50 (former nr. 194), Bucharest;
    1911 - The Dr. I. Cantacuzino Institute, with eng. G.Bals, Splaiul Independentei nr. 103, Bucharest;
    1914-1916 - Adina Stirbey house, str. Sevastopol nr. 26, Bucharest; 1931 - fence by Arghir Culina;
    1912-1913 - University, with arch. Duiliu Marcu, The University Square, expansion of the side on Str. Academiei, Bucharest;
    1922 - Eng. Panaitescu house, Str. Paris nr. 30, Bucharest;
    1924-1928 - Expansion of the I. C. Bratianu Square, with arch. Alexandru Baucher, Str. Edgar Quinet, Bucharest.
     
    Unfinished projects
    Architecture projects:
    1913 - The Romanian Academy Library project, Bucharest;
    ? - The School of Fine Arts and the Archeology Institute projects, Bucharest;
    ? – Initial project for the University at the Elefterie Bridge, Bucharest;
    ? – Project for a church with 3 towers, Bucharest;
    ? - The "Sf. Ilie Grant" Church, Str. G. M. Zamfirescu nr. 55, applied by: arch. C. M. Babic;
    1922 - M. Ghika-Budesti house, str. Londra corner of str. Berna, possibly started, today the Financial Administration for Legal Entities Sector 1 - arch. Statie Ciortan.
     
    Demolished projects:
    1911 - The palace of the Prince George A. Stirbey, Calea Grivitei, Bucharest;
    1913 - The M. V. Cantacuzino Villa, entrepreneurs: Vignali & Gambara, Str. Atena corner of Aleea Alexandru, Bucharest.
     
    Attributed project:
    ? - The modification of the Varlam house, built in 1909 by the eng. L. Bossi, str. Vasile Alecsandri nr. 6, Bucharest;
     
    Restoring projects:
    ? - In the Historical Monuments Committee
    - interior restoration;
    1943 - Furniture for the "Sf. Vasile" Church, The Church in Baia, The Romanian Chambers in The University of Pittsburgh.
     
    Publishing/editorial activity:
    The Evolution of Architecture in Muntenia and Oltenia, a four-volume study.
    The Old Religious Architecture in Muntenia and Oltenia – a synthesis attempt.
    Golia Church – Architectonic Description.
    Probota Monastery.
    The Roman and Byzantine Minor Arts.
    The Architecture of the Royal Church in Curtea de Arges - Its origins and Influences.
    The Restoration of the Grand Church of the Cozia Monastery

    - various essays gathered after the lectures took place.
     


    BIBLIOGRAPHY


    Paul Constantin, Arta 1900 in Romania, Bucuresti, 1972.
    Mihai Fratila (ed.), Catedrala. O istorie de har, Episcopia Greco-catolica, Bucuresti, 2014.
    Oana Marinache, Traseu urban Nicolae Ghika-Budesti, Editura Istoria Artei, 2013 (flyer).
    Oana Marinache, Resedintele Stirbey din Bucuresti si Buftea: arhitectura si decoratia interioara, Editura ACS, Bucuresti, 2013.
    Oana Marinache, Stirbey: resedinte, mosii, ctitorii, Editura ACS, Bucuresti, 2014.
    Ruxandra Nemteanu, Vila in stil neoromanesc.
    Alexandru Tzigara-Samurcas, Muzeografie romaneasca, Bucuresti, 1936.
     
    Expresia cautarilor unui model autohton in locuinta individuala urbana. Editura Simetria, 2014.
    Povestea Caselor, Editura Simetria, Bucuresti, 2002.
     
    Articles in periodicals:
    "Boabe de grau", magazine.
    "Arhitectura", magazine.

    Webgraphy:
    http://nicolaeghikabudesti.blogspot.ro/