Henry-Russell Hitchcock

Henry-Russell Hitchcock

Henry-Russell Hitchcock

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Henry-Russell Hitchcock (1903-1987) was the leading American architectural historian of his generation. A long-time professor at Smith College and New York University, he is best known for writings that helped to define Modern architecture.


Henry-Russell Hitchcock was born in Boston and educated at the Middlesex School and Harvard University, receiving his A.B. in 1924 and his M.A. in 1927.

In the early 1930s, at the request of Alfred Barr, Hitchcock collaborated with Philip Johnson (and Lewis Mumford) on "Modern Architecture: International Exhibition" at the Museum of Modern Art (1932), the exhibition that presented the new "International Style" architecture of Europe to an American audience. Hitchcock and Johnson's co-authored book The International Style: Architecture Since 1922 was published simultaneously with the MOMA exhibit.

Four years later Hitchcock's book, The Architecture of H. H. Richardson and His Times (1936) brought the career of American architect Henry Hobson Richardson out of obscurity while also arguing that the distant roots of European Modernism were actually to be found in the United States. Hitchcock's In the Nature of Materials (1942) continued to emphasize the American roots of Modern architecture, in this case by focusing on the career of Frank Lloyd Wright.

Hitchcock taught at a number of colleges and universities, but primarily at Smith College (where he was also Director of the Smith College Museum of Art from...
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