Gillette-Tyrell Building

Gillette-Tyrell Building

Kristin Pack Art Deco

Gillette-Tyrell BuildingThis building is another significant example of Tulsa’s Art Deco Style of architecture. Completed in 1930, this building was originally designed for thirteen floors but only three were completed. Its appearance, both inside and outside, is unique in comparison to the few buildings of this style remaining in Tulsa.

In 1930, the building’s architect described it as having several types of architecture faintly suggested in the building and its decoration. “But, as a whole, the type is distinctly Modern,” he said. Its style is now recognized as the early phase of Art Deco. The Italian, Spanish, and American Indian derived motifs on the exterior terra cotta work with its vertical emphasis and colorful Zigzag decorations combine with its interior decorations to provide a classic example of most of the basic elements of the Art Deco style.

The original, richly decorated lobby remains today. It contains colorful tile wainscoting, ornate plaster coffered ceilings, mosaic tile floors, detailed cast iron railings, and etched glass windows and light fixtures The ornate exterior terra cotta work is in good condition and is virtually unaltered, although the South canopy was demolished in 2000.