I’ve always had a sort of passing interest in temple architectural history and design, so I thought I’d get Chat-GPT-V’s take on the possible architectural influences of different temples by uploading an image, asking it to “explain the architectural influences of this building and provide examples of buildings typifying these influences. Discuss non-LDS-specific architectural themes.” I hand-added images of the example buildings.I make no claim as to what exactly inspired the architect in each particular case.
From Wikipedia: It is one of eight temples that does not have an angel Moroni statue, and one of six without spires, similar to Solomon’s Temple. It is also one of only two temples the church built in the shape of a cross, the other being the Laie Hawaii Temple. [STC: It is worth noting that Catholic and other Christian churches are often built in the shapes of crosses].
STC Addendum: Commenters below noted Frank Lloyd Write’s influence on the Cardston temple, specifically his Unity Temple in Oak Park, Illinois. From the picture below, the resemblance is pretty clear.
This building showcases an intriguing mix of architectural styles, but certain key characteristics stand out:
1. **Art Deco**: The emphasis on vertical lines, stylized and geometric decorative elements, and the layering and stepping of the building’s profile are reminiscent of Art Deco. This architectural style, which gained popularity in the 1920s and 1930s, is known for its combination of modern styles with fine craftsmanship and luxurious materials.
2. **Modernism**: The clean lines, absence of ornate details, and the use of geometric forms, especially the rectangular and square patterns, suggest Modernist influences. Modernism emphasizes the use of modern materials, like concrete and glass, and is often characterized by a lack of superfluous decoration, focusing instead on the function of the building and the space it creates.
3. **Brutalism**: There’s a hint of Brutalism in the building’s design, especially in the use of raw concrete and the bold, blocky forms. Brutalist architecture, which became popular in the mid-20th century, is characterized by its ruggedness, straightforward use of materials, and stark geometric shapes.
4. **Postmodernism**: Some elements of the building, such as the stylized decorative features, could be considered postmodern. Postmodern architecture often combines elements from different architectural movements and can include playful or ironic references.