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Eclectic Architecture

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Title: Eclectic Architecture  
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Subject: Postmodern architecture, French Colonial, Territorial Revival architecture, Georgian architecture, Queen Anne style architecture in the United States
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Eclectic Architecture

Neo eclectic homes built in 2006 in California
Neo eclectic homes in the Willowdale district of Toronto, Ontario
Neo eclectic home in Salinas, California

Neo-eclectic architecture is a name for an architectural style that has influenced residential building construction in North America in the later part of the 20th century and early part of the 21st. It is a contemporary version of Architectural Revivalism that has perennially occurred since Neoclassical architecture developed in the mid 18th century.

In contrast to the occasionally faux and low-budget neo-eclectic detached homesteads, the term New Classical Architecture identifies contemporary buildings that stick to the basic ideals, proportions, materials and craftsmanship of traditional architecture.


Neo-eclectic architecture combines a wide array of decorative techniques taken from an assortment of different house styles. It is a response to the clean unadorned modernist styles, such as the Mid-Century modern and Ranch-style house that dominated North American residential design and construction in the first decades after the Second World War.[1] It is an outgrowth of postmodern architecture. It differs from postmodernism in that it is not creatively experimental.


Single-Story Neo-eclectic home design in Denver, Colorado
Some neo-eclectic buildings will combine an array of different historical styles in a single building. A house so designed may have [2]

In neo-eclectic architecture the revival elements are almost always decorative, consisting of surface elements such as claddings and windows. The basic construction of neo-eclectic houses is unchanged from previous house styles such as the ranch-style house. An important development leading to the modern neo-eclectic style is the popularity of EIFS, a form of external insulation that is easy to apply and can be coloured and shaped to appear like an array of different materials such as stucco and stone.


Neo-eclectic architecture is most prominent in what are pejoratively known as McMansions, but it has been embraced by almost all residential builders.[3] Across North America most suburbs built in the last three decades can largely be described as neo-eclectic .

Critics of Neo-eclectic architecture see the style as pretentious, wasteful and/or garish.[4]

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ "What Not to Build: Do's and Don'ts of Exerior Home Design." By Sandra Edelman, Judith Kay Gaman, Judy Gaman, Robby Reid, Creative Homeowner Press.
  3. ^
  4. ^ Cathleen McGuigan, The Mcmansion Next Door, Newsweek, October 27, 2003. Retrieved on 2008-10-26.

External links

  • Picture Dictionary of House Styles in North America and Beyond - Neoeclectic
  • Humanities Web - Neo-Eclectic Style
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