city of chicago building terra cotta: a visual study of ornament from the great chicago fire to the great depression

the following images offers an in-depth visual study of chicago's extant building terra cotta, beginning in the early 1870s with the use of "gray body" terra cotta "trimmings" fabricated by the chicago terra terra company using white clay from indiana, to the richly colored polychromed glazed terra executed by several chicago-based companies (e.g., american, northwestern, etc.) during the depression and beyond, before the industry gradually fell out of favor led by a shift in design trends during the mid-20th century. sadly, the art of terra cotta as building ornament joined the ever-increasing  list of "lost arts" in building construction.

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