Post-Modernism is a rejection of the moderne movement.  It rejects the purity of form and the purity of function in favor of wide usage of materials and references.  Post-modernism brought back detailing in a whimsical way.  This school of architecture was developed by Robert Venturi, Michael Graves, Charles Moore and Robert A.M. Stern.  Stern suggests five divisions under post-modernism that include ironic, latent, fundamentalist/essentialist, canonic and modern traditionalist.

Primary Stylistic Features
  • Prominent entrances.
  • Traditional and modern construction techniques incorporated.
  • Polychromatic paints or materials.
  • Multiple geometric forms.
  • References to historic or vernacular architecture.
Secondary Stylistic Features
  • Lunette windows.
  • Arches with keystones incorporated in design, often in an exaggerated manner.
  • Pediments.
  • Reference to adjacent buildings.
  • Arched windows.
  • Dormers.
  • Exaggerated columns.

Evaluation Considerations

Post-Modernist buildings will be found individually throughout Alaska.  To be eligible, Post-Modern buildings must embody nearly all the primary features and some secondary features.  Design, workmanship, materials, and setting are extremely important aspects of integrity and should be retained.  Post-Modern buildings must make reference to historic or vernacular aspects of architecture.  Landscaping must also be considered when listing these buildings.

For Further Information

Venturi, Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture, 1966