curtain wall

   In castles, the surrounding fortified walls. In modern architecture, an outer non-load-bearing wall, often simply a field of large panes of glass held in place with a lattice of other material, sometimes merely thin metal bands. The modern curtain wall was first made possible with the introduction of the structural steel skeleton by watchmaker and inventor James Bogardus, using modular prefabricated cast iron and glass in New York City in 1849. Other notable progress in this direction was made by architects Louis Sullivan (American, 1856-1924), in the Carson-Pirie-Scott store (Chicago, 1899-1904), and Walter Gropius (German, 1883-1969), whose design for the Bauhaus (Germany, 1926) became the precursor to the "glass box" building of the International style.

Glossary of Art Terms. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • curtain wall — n. an independently supported outer wall that carries only its own weight and is freely removable …   English World dictionary

  • Curtain wall — For defensive curtain walls in medieval buildings, see Curtain wall (fortification). Glass curtain wall of the Bauhaus Dessau A curtain wall is an outer covering of a building in which the outer walls are non structural, but merely keep out the… …   Wikipedia

  • Curtain Wall — Kirchenfassade Mittelalterliche Hausfassade …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • curtain wall — cur·tain wall loc.s.f.inv. ES ingl. {{wmetafile0}} TS arch. nell architettura moderna, parete esterna parzialmente o totalmente vetrata, costituita da pannelli prefabbricati tenuti insieme e sostenuti da sottili intelaiature metalliche {{line}}… …   Dizionario italiano

  • curtain wall — noun 1. : curtain 5 2. : a nonbearing wall between columns or piers that is not supported by the girders or beams of a skeleton frame called also enclosure wall …   Useful english dictionary

  • curtain wall — (in a framed building) an exterior wall having no structural function. [1850 55] * * * Nonbearing wall of glass, metal, or masonry attached to a building s exterior structural frame. After World War II, low energy costs gave impetus to the… …   Universalium

  • curtain wall — noun 1》 a fortified wall around a medieval castle, typically one linking towers together. 2》 a wall which encloses the space within a building but does not support the roof …   English new terms dictionary

  • curtain wall — cur′tain wall n. bui (in a framed building) an exterior wall having no structural function • Etymology: 1850–55 …   From formal English to slang

  • curtain wall — noun Date: 1853 a nonbearing exterior wall between columns or piers …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Curtain wall — Usually the free standing outside wall of a castle running between two towers …   Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases


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