Buffalo Savings / M&T - Table of Contents
Interior - Rotunda
Buffalo Savings Bank / Goldome / M&T Center
545 Main Street, Buffalo, NY
On this page, below:
Dome zodiac and arabesques
Interior paintings were not commissioned until 1925. The three artists were William C. Francis, a Buffalo artist, Eugene F. Savage and George Davidson. The paintings were to be completed in 18 months."William C. Francis: Studied art in Buffalo, New York City and Rome; graduate of Columbia University School of Architecture. Mural panels and ceilings decorations in Saturn Club and First Presbyterian Church, Buffalo.
"Eugene F. Savage: Studied Chicago Art Institute, American Academy in Rome and Munich. Professor of Painting, Yale School of Fine Arts. Member of National Academy; Century Club; Architectural League of New York; National Society of Mural Painters. Two of his paintings are in the Post Office Building, Washington, D.C. His many murals and facade mosaics include one on the United States Memorial at Epinal, France, and in the New York State Court of Appeals in Albany. [Painted the pendentive murals]
"George Davidson: Fellow of the American Academy in Rome, 1913-1916; teacher of mural painting, Cooper Union, New York. Awarded Medal of Honor for mural decorations by the Architectural League of New York." - Source: "The Gold Dome: An Architectural Profile" brochure, pub. by Goldome
Pendentive: A triangular curved surface between two arches and beneath a dome.
"The dome rests on four pendentives. By transferring the weight to piers rather than to the wall itself, pendentive construction makes possible a lofty, unobstructed interior space." - Gardner's Art Through the Ages, Tenth Edition, by Richard G. Tansey and Fred S. Kleiner. Harcourt Brace College Pub. 1996, p. 291.
Spandrel: The approximately triangular shape between two arches and the horizontal line that runs above them.
Each pendentive features a mural denoting Buffalo's success: "Commerce," "Industry," "Power," and "The Arts"
Two of the four pendentives which include large murals in the spandrels.
Left: Southwest pendentive mural: "The Arts" ... Right: Northwest pendentive mural: "Power."
Beaux Arts Classical style ... Neoclassical style ... Facing Main Street through the right hand monumental Beaux Arts Classical fanlight window ... Main entrance is in the left pier
Left: Southeast pendentive mural: "Industry" ... Right: Southwest pendentive mural: "The Arts"
Facing Genesee Street through the left hand monumental Beaux Arts Classical fanlight window ... The four pendentives, or triangular dome supports, are each 14 feet high, and 22 feet wide at the top
Southeast pendentive: "Industry."
"A view of the Buffalo River, looking west. On both sides are signs of Buffalo's enormous industrial activity at the time. The former Donner Steel Plant (later Republic Steel) appears in the lower left portion of the painting. Throughout the design, factories, railway lines, ships, docks, and bridges show the city's incessant industrial activity and the distribution of Buffalo's products to all parts of the world. The worker and the engineer on each side of the upper panel represent the personnel of industry." - Source: "The Gold Dome: An Architectural Profile" brochure, pub. by Goldome
... Two details below:
The worker and the engineer on each side of the upper panel represent the personnel of industry.
"Industry" - Detail #2
Northeast pendentive: "Commerce."
"An aerial view of downtown Buffalo in 1926, looking north. The harbor light, ore and freight boats, railway terminalsgrain elevators show the city's dominant position as a receiver and shipper of agricultural, mineral and industrial products. The view extends as far as Main and Genesee Streets,where the gold-domed building can be seen in the upper right hand corner of the picture. The two figures on each side of the upper panel symbolize the administrative and executive phases of the city's commercial activities." - Source: "The Gold Dome: An Architectural Profile" brochure, pub. by Goldome.
Two details below:
The two figures on each side of the upper panel symbolize the administrative and executive phases of the city's commercial activities.
""Commerce" - Detail #2
Northwest pendentive: "Power."
"This painting shows the Niagara River at the falls, the mist rising from the mighty waters. The river is depicted both as a source and a symbol of power, a previously uncontrolled natural force harnessed by the genius of man. The two heroic figures in the upper portion are expressive of power under control, turning the wheels of industry. The compass in the lower left corner, as in the case of the other pendentives, indicates the direction from which this view is taken." - Source: "The Gold Dome: An Architectural Profile," pub. by Goldome ...
Four details below:
"Power"- Detail #1
"Power"- Detail #2
"Power"- Detail #3
"Power"- Detail #4 ... Lower left artist's signature: Eugene Savage
Southwest Pendentive: The Arts
"The beautiful north section of the city which includes Delaware Park Lake and its environs forms the basis for this painting. The Albright-Knox Art Gallery and the more prominent streets and parkways are readily recognizable. In the lower left portion of the picture, immediately above the compass, four buildings devoted to the Arts and Sciences have been included - the State University of New York at Buffalo, Buffalo and Erie County Public Library, Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society, and Buffalo Museum of Science. On the upper left is a figure representing dance, painting and sculpture, while on the right is a figure symbolic of literature and music." - Source: "The Gold Dome: An Architectural Profile," pub. by Goldome ...
Four details below:
On the upper left is a figure representing dance, painting and sculpture, while on the right is a figure symbolic of literature and music.
The Arts - Detail #2.
L shape in upper right: Gates Circle, Chapin Parkway, Soldiers Circle, Bidwell Parkway, Colonial Circle ...
White building in middle: Albright Art Gallery ...
In the lower left portion of the picture, immediately above the compass, four buildings devoted to the Arts and Sciences have been included - the University of Buffalo seal (updated seal photo), Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society, Buffalo and Erie County Public Library (demolished), and Buffalo Museum of Science
The Arts - Detail #3.
White building in middle: Albright Art Gallery
The Arts - Detail #4
In the lower left portion of the picture, immediately above the compass, four buildings devoted to the Arts and Sciences have been included - University of Buffalo seal (updated seal photo), Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society, Buffalo and Erie County Public Library (demolished), and Buffalo Museum of Science
Photo taken at Christmas time in 2008 ... Customer desk detailed below:
Detail #1 - Harpy: a rapacious monster described as having a woman's head and body and a bird's wings and claws or depicted as a bird of prey with a woman's face
Detail #2 - Customer desk plaque: Note bucrane between bay leaf garlands ... Scrolled acanthus leaves at bottom ...
1846: The bank was chartered in 1846 as the first savings bank in the city. Among the founding trustees were Millard Fillmore, who became the 13th president on the United States and Nathan Kesley Hall, who became Postmaster General.
Detail #3 - Rosette ornamentation on waste basket
3 variations of leaf-and-dart molding
Marble pendentive pillar ... Three acroteria ... Roman Ionic columns
Neoclassical style marble door surround: Acroteria ... Triangular Pediment ... Roman (smooth shaft) Ionic columns supporting entablature ... Double brass doors with transom
Roman (smooth shaft) Ionic columns
Dome zodiac and arabesques
Astrological signs of the zodiac: Astrology is the study of correlations of celestial events with behavior on earth, particularly correlations which cannot be explained by gravitation, magnetism, or other forces that are well-established in physics or other sciences.
Arabesque: an ornament or style that employs flower, foliage, or fruit and sometimes animal and figural outlines in a fancifully combined pattern. Some Western arabesques derive from Islamic art, but others are closely based on Ancient Roman decorations, e.g., in Pompeii.
Fanning out between the ribs of the dome are 16 wedge-shaped arabesques of Renaissance ornamentation (each 24 feet high) against a background of gold leaf. Also included are the signs of the zodiac. ... The "eye" of the dome is 13 feet across ...
Note top medallion which is detailed below:
Top quote from Confucius: "Virtue is the Root, Wealth the Flower"
Colors in photos depend on lighting
Left panel : Capricorn ... Center panel: Aquarius ... Right panel: Pisces
Capricorn panel detail
Capricorn panel detail - "Goat-horned" (The Sea-Goat) ... Arabesques
Capricorn panel detail ... Harpies
Aquarius panel detail - The Water-Bearer
Aquarius panel detail - The Water-Bearer ...
Aquarius panel detail
Pisces panel detail
Pisces - The Fishes
Pisces panel detail
Aries panel detail
Aries - The Ram
A second depiction of Aries - The Ram
Taurus - The Bull ... Gemini -The Twins
Taurus - The Bull
Gemini -The Twins
Cancer - the crab
Leo - The Lion
Virgo - The Maiden
Virgo - The Maiden
Libra - The Scales
Libra - The Scales ... Scorpio - The Scorpion
Scorpio - The Scorpion ... Sagittarius - The (Centaur) Archer
Scorpio - The Scorpion
Same image as above, but different lighting: Scorpio - The Scorpion
Sagittarius - The (Centaur) Archer