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Lilly House & Gardens and Miller House Comparison Essay

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Updated: Aug 21st, 2020

Hennessy explains that there are various ways of analyzing a given work of art formally (2). Comparison and contrast can be done mainly by the use of the artist’s name, the year of birth as well as the influences. In addition, style associated with the artist, title of work and background information would also be used for the same evaluation. Peterson adds that comparison can also be done based on the critical analysis of the artwork. In critical analysis, shape or form of the art, color, value, texture and space are the major tools used (44). The discussion therefore attempts to compare two types of artwork found in the Indianapolis Museums of Art’s permanent collection.

The first artwork is the Oldfields, known as “Lilly House and Gardens”. The house was designed in the 1920s by Percival Gallagher of the Olsted Brothers firm (Chanock 95). The second architectural site is the Miller House which was designed by Eero Saarinen with the interior and landscape being designed by Alexander Girard and Daniel Urban Kiley respectively (Chanock 96). The two architectural sites clearly symbolize the modern type of houses and the colonial ones.

Chanock confirms that Olfields architectural work is one of the examples of country place era estate, a period during which, large estate was built outside cities across America (98). The building reflects how people used to live in the country estate in the 1920s. The Lilly House and gardens were a true reflection of the Americans lives in the 1920s. The house was occupied by the late businessman who lived in Indianapolis in the 1920s, thus the name of the architectural work. Miller house on the other is an architectural design that shows the modernism of the society as depicted by flowering layout, which covers almost the whole compound (Hennessy 20).

The two architectural drawings seem to have many rooms, just as depicted by their big sizes (Peterson 43). They occupy a wide area. The size of the two architectural drawings does not affect their quality and instead, they look more appealing due to the beautiful scenery around them. Peterson asserts that the colors used by both artists are almost similar, though there is a slight difference (44). They both used a green color in front of the buildings to symbolize the nature of the vegetation. However, Chanock explains that Oldfields-Lily house and garden compound is greener showing that there is grass planted (98). The green color is not intense in the compound of Miller House and this shows the presence of flowers.

Peterson says that the architects have used the same color but of different intensities to show the sky and clouds (44). In Lily House, the color of the sky is dark blue while in Miller house the sky is light blue. Both the architectural work have trees. Miller house also has a distinctive features from that of Lily House in the sense that it has a flat roof and a wall made of stones and glass (Chanock 99). Lily House has a raised roof, a common feature of ancient buildings, with walls made of blocks. The shape of the roof and even the whole building of Lily House is a resemblance of an image of the types of houses that were constructed during the ancient periods. Such buildings were used by the Kings and leaders in high positions as seen in images in the Bible. The art is therefore realistic, since it gives a clear picture of how people lived in the ancient times (Chanock 100). The style used in making Miller House is present one and does not combine any cultural style as seen from the architectural work.

Oldfields-Lily House was a home of an Indianapolis businessman known as J.K Lily in the 1920s.It has eight well-furnished historical rooms. The majority of these rooms reflect the period when Lily’s family used to live there, that is, 1930s (Chanock 100). Although it is well-furnished, the majority of materials used are the ones which were used by Lily. Today, the architectural site is being used to enable people to have a deeper understanding of life in the early twentieth century (Peterson 45). Miller House art was a house of J. Irwin Miller in the year 1953. This is used to show the appearance of the American modern house. The recent American houses are constructed with a flat stone roof, which is different from the ancient constructions.

Hennessy confirms that the Miller house is symbolic in the sense that its walls are made of stones and glasses (50). The compound also has flowers and these are a characteristic of the modern houses. The symbolic natures of the two architectural works communicate to us how buildings used to be in ancient time and progress that has taken place since then (Chanock 105).

In conclusion, both the artworks discussed above reflect the changes that have occurred in the way people live and construct their houses. Stylistically, the two drawings show elements of reality from what is seen in Miller House is true about the modern houses. In the same way, the discussion provides an insight of how buildings used to look like in 1920s by looking at the Oldfields-Lily House image.

Works Cited

Chanock, Kate. “Comments on essays: do students understand what tutors write?” Teaching in Higher Education 5.1 (2000): 95-105. Print.

Hennessy, Brendan. Writing an essay: Simple techniques to transform your coursework and examinations. Dayton, Ohio: How To Books Ltd, 2002. Print.

Peterson, Linda H. “Writing across the curriculum and/in the freshman English program.” McLeod and Soven (1992): 43-50. Print.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "Lilly House & Gardens and Miller House Comparison." August 21, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/lilly-house-amp-gardens-and-miller-house-comparison/.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'Lilly House & Gardens and Miller House Comparison'. 21 August.

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