Previous
Next
Morse-Stiles.jpg

Morse and Ezra Stiles Colleges, 1962
Eero Saarinen (1910-1961, B.F.A. 1934, M.A., Honorary, 1949)

Eero Saarinen remarked during the construction of Stiles and Morse Colleges that he had embarked "on unchartered waters" in his design. In many ways, this is true: The coarse walls of a poured concrete-and-stone mixture with thin strips of vertical windows and the complex's overall massing and layout (there are no right angles) are indeed unique. What is most splendid about Stiles and Morse, however, is that despite their idiosyncratic modernity they are nonetheless in harmony with the rest of campus, with two towers that establish strong ties to the nearby Payne Whitney Gymnasium and Hall of Graduate Studies, and a winding alley between the two colleges that at once calls to mind the streets of Italian hill towns such as San Gimignano and the intimate courtyards of James Gamble Rogers's residential colleges of the 1920s.