Early Period of Modern Architecture in Turkey - A Case Study of Eskisehir
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Modern architecture in the Western World bore fruit at the beginning of the 20th Century in consequence of the process of modernity and seeking of the proper architecture for it. It was formed firstly towards the end of the 1920s. The main reason of this nonsynchronous development was the inadequacy of enlightenment and industrial revolution during the Ottoman Empire and the lack of formation of an intellectual infrastructure which provides the basis of modernity. However, the Ottoman Westernization occurring in the 19th century constituted the foundations of the Republic modernity founded in 1923. The earliest modern architectural designs in Turkey were first practised by European architects after the foundation of the Republic and internalised and practised extensively by the native architects afterwards. The early modern architecture of Turkey, named as "1930s Modernism", continued until the beginning of the World War II. This period was formed in between the periods of first and second nationalist architecture movements. The early modern architecture period of Turkey was a period which high-quality designs were made. It was practised and internalised not only in big cities such as Ankara and in Istanbul, but also in the medium and small cities of the country. This situation was not just about a formal exception but about the internalisation of modernity by the society. Eskisehir is one of the most important pioneering cities of the Republic period in terms of industrial and educational developments. The earliest modern buildings were built as the public buildings by the state and non-citizen architects in the inadequate conditions of the country in terms of economy and professional people. The earliest modern houses of the city designed by these architects were the prototypes for the later practices which offered the citizens a new lifestyle. The modern houses were the symbols of prestige and status for the owners and the dwellers. The features of early modern buildings of Eskisehir as a medium-size city of Turkey will be examined in this study within the scope of the early modern architectural period of Turkey.