Pevsner, Nikolaus, Sir, 1902-

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Biographical/Historical Note

The art and architectural historian Sir Nikolaus Pevsner (1902-1983) was born in Germany. He worked with the Dresden gallery (1924-1928) and taught at Göttingen University (1929-1933) before immigrating to England in 1933. In England Pevsner taught at Birkbeck College (University of London) and the Courtauld Institute, and lectured as the Slade Professor of Art at Cambridge (1949-1955) and Oxford (1969) Universities.

Pevsner was a scholar of Italian baroque painting, German sculpture and the 19th and 20th century architecture of England and Europe. It is as an architectural historian that he is best remembered, partly because of the astonishing amount of work he did in this area, and also because of his strong point of view. His polemical view is evident in his early book Pioneers of modern design (1936) in which he first tried to persuade England to accept the Modern movement. He remained a persistent advocate for modern design and for historical preservation. Among his many publications are the following books: An Outline of European architecture, the History of building types, and the monumental Buildings of England in 46 volumes, of which 35 were researched and written by Pevsner. Pevsner was an editor on the influential journal Architectural Review and edited the Pelican History of Art series which comprised 48 volumes. He received the Gold Medal of the Royal Institute of British Architects in 1967 and a knighthood in 1969. Pevsner died in 1983.

From the guide to the Nikolaus Pevsner papers, 1919-1982, (Getty Research Institute)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Cahill, Holger, 1887-1960. Holger Cahill Papers, 1907-1983, bulk (1942-1959). New York Public Library System, NYPL
referencedIn Holger Cahill Papers, 1907-1983, 1942-1959 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
creatorOf Nikolaus Pevsner papers, 1919-1982 Getty Research Institute
creatorOf Penguin (Firm). Letters, 1950-1965, to Lewis Mumford. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Erich and Luise Mendelsohn papers, 1894-1992 Getty Research Institute
creatorOf McCallum, Ian Robert More. Letters, 1933-1966, to Lewis Mumford. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Pugh, Elinor M. Letters concerning Herbert P. Horne, Lionel Pigot Johnson and Arthur H. Mackmurdo, 1943-1958. Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Pugh, Elinor M. Letters concerning Herbert P. Horne, Lionel Pigot Johnson and Arthur H. Mackmurdo, 1943-1958. Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Gropius, Walter, 1883-1969. Papers, 1925-1969 (bulk: 1937-1969) Houghton Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Architectural Association (Great Britain) corporateBody
associatedWith Architectural guides for travelers corporateBody
associatedWith Ashby, C. R. (Charles Robert), 1863-1942 person
associatedWith Cahill, Holger, 1887-1960. person
associatedWith Courtauld Institute of Art corporateBody
associatedWith Ebhardt, Bodo, b. 1865 person
associatedWith Fleming, John, 1919- person
associatedWith Gemäldegalerie (Dresden, Germany) corporateBody
associatedWith Great Britain. Royal Fine Art Commission corporateBody
associatedWith Gropius, Walter, 1883-1969 person
associatedWith Jerusalem Committee corporateBody
associatedWith Mackmurdo, A. H. (Arthur Heygate), 1851-1942 person
associatedWith Mendelsohn, Erich, 1887-1953 person
associatedWith Mendelsohn, Luise, 1894-1980 person
associatedWith Morris, William, 1834-1896 person
associatedWith Omega Workshops corporateBody
associatedWith Penguin (Firm). corporateBody
associatedWith Pinder, Wilhelm, 1878-1947 person
associatedWith Posener, Julius person
associatedWith Pugh, Elinor M. person
associatedWith Russell, Gordon, Sir, 1892-1980 person
associatedWith Schlosser, Julius, Ritter von, 1866-1938 person
associatedWith University of Cambridge corporateBody
associatedWith University of London corporateBody
associatedWith University of Oxford corporateBody
associatedWith Voysey, Charles F. A., 1857-1941 person
Place Name Admin Code Country
England—Buildings, structures, etc.—Guidebooks
England—Buildings, structures, etc.
Great Britain—Description and travel
Subject
Design
Painting, Baroque
Sculpture, German
Architecture
Architecture
Architecture
Architecture
Architecture
Architecture
Architecture
Architecture
Architecture
Architecture
Architecture, Modern
Art historians
Occupation
Activity

Person

Birth 1902

Death 1983

Information

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