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Humanities 1

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1963, Paul Rudolph. 285 Old Westport Rd.
  • (Photograph by Aaron Ahlstrom)

Though Humanities 1 is the only building Rudolph designed at Southern Massachusetts Technological Institute (SMTI; later the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth), he intended the structure to serve as a template for successive campus buildings. Located east of the main library, Humanities 1 is composed of a series of 28 x 14–foot modules that allowed for expansion. A ground-floor–level arcade would connect subsequent extensions. Large, hollow piers frame the building and contain the heating, cooling, and ventilation systems. The piers are angled at 45 degrees and support projecting upper-story bays. A relatively inexpensive, manufactured, rectangular, 8.5 x 16–inch concrete block with semicircular raised ridges was the primary building material throughout the campus buildings. Overall, Humanities 1 is a vibrant, animated building with a surface of staggered angles and planes.


Monk, Tony. The Art and Architecture of Paul Rudolph. Chichester, UK: Wiley-Academy, 1999.

Rohan, Timothy. The Architecture of Paul Rudolph. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2014.

Writing Credits

Aaron Ahlstrom
Daniel Bluestone


What's Nearby


Aaron Ahlstrom, "Humanities 1", [Dartmouth, Massachusetts], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

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