Harrison, Wallace Kirkman

Harrison, Wallace Kirkman,

1895–1981, American architect and city planner, b. Worcester, Mass. Harrison designed the Trylon and Perisphere, the structures that came to symbolize the 1939 New York World's Fair. In 1945 he entered into partnership with Max Abramowitz (1908–2004), who was later famed for his design of Philharmonic Hall (now David Geffen Hall) at Lincoln Center for the Performing ArtsLincoln Center for the Performing Arts,
in central Manhattan, New York City, between 62d and 66th streets W of Broadway. Lincoln Center is both a complex of buildings and the arts organizations that reside there.
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 and the Columbia Univ. law school (both: 1962). Harrison was responsible for numerous large buildings, such as those for Alcoa in Pittsburgh (1952) and the Time-Life (1960) and Exxon (1973) buildings, both in New York City. He was probably the most effective large-scale coordinator in American architecture. His projects included Rockefeller CenterRockefeller Center,
complex of buildings in central Manhattan, New York City, between 48th and 51st streets and Fifth Ave. and the Ave. of the Americas (Sixth Ave.). The project was sponsored by John D. Rockefeller, Jr., with fourteen of the buildings built between 1931 and 1939.
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, the UN Headquarters (1947–53), and the World's Fair of 1964 in New York City and the South Mall (1963–78) in Albany, N.Y.


See biography by V. Newhouse (1989).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Harrison, Wallace Kirkman


Born Sept. 28, 1895, in Worcester, Mass. American architect.

Harrison studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. In 1945 he became a partner in the architectural firm of Harrison and Abramowitz. He collaborated on the designs for Rockefeller Center, the United Nations headquarters, and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, all in New York. He also designed the Alcoa Building in Pittsburgh (1952) and the Phoneix Mutual Insurance Building in Hartford (1963), both with M. Abramowitz, as well as the Metropolitan Opera House in New York (1966).

Harrison effectively makes use of the achievements of modern architecture and engineering. However, his buildings are eclectic in conception and are designed with commercial success in mind.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.