Manhattan Architecture: The Central Synagogue and The Sony Building

The Central Synagogue
Located at 123 East 55th Street in Manhattan, this unique gem of New York City was built in 1872.It is older than most of the buildings around it.As Manhattan grew up around the Central Synagogue, its true unique architectural beauty set itself in sharp contrast with its surroundings.It is much shorter, however, more concrete, than the surrounding skyscrapers.The entire building resembles a Moorish synagogue crossed with a medieval cathedral.It is the exact opposite of the modern urban jungle behind it.
The golden pillars callfirst attention.The large sphere-topped pillars fill the gap of space opened up through its relation to the urban fabric surrounding them.The pillars extend high in the air, ensuring the more modern buildings around it don't swallow up the space.The spherical pillar tops are crafted with decorative colors, setting a striking contrast to the gloom of the Manhattan sky rises around it.Despite the contrast of the pillars to the rectangle base, the space looks balanced.
The brickwork of its facade contrasts to the sparkle of class from its neighbors.The vertical walls of the building form a barrier against the glass around it.It looks incredibly stable and even formidable in comparison to the urban environment of Manhattan.Despite it looking small compared to the surrounding skyscrapers, the synagogue is enormous on a human scale.Up close, the massive brick walls make it appear even more massive.The center circular window is inviting to the eye, and is set on a plane higher than the lower sidewalls.The outside design incites many visitors to enter inside to observe a lavish and colorful Moorish interior.Despite being burnt down in the late twentieth century, the interior is reminiscent of the early days of New York.
Designed by architects Phillip Johnson and John Burgee, the Sony building is a striking exam


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