Happy Birthday Frei Otto!

Courtesy of mytum.de

Frei Otto, German architect and structural engineer turns 89 today. The 1972 Munich Olympic Stadium is perhaps his best known work. The pioneering tensile structure, which stood in considerable contrast to the strict, authoritarian stadium that was its predecessor, was meant to present a different, more compassionate face for Germany. Today, Frei Otto is still active in practice, working alongside architects such as Pritzker prize winner Shigeru Ban on the Japanese Pavilion at . Thanks for your contributions and Happy Birthday Mr. Otto!

AD Classics: Munich Olympic Stadium / Frei Otto & Gunther Behnisch

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Often mentioned as a pioneer in lightweight tensile and membrane construction, yet overshadowed in the discipline of architecture, Frei Otto along with collaborated to design the 1972 Olympic Stadium in , Germany.  With the Olympics having already been held in Berlin in 1936, Otto and Behnisch took the second Olympics games in Germany as an opportunity and a second chance to show Germany in a new light.  Their goal was to design a structure that would emulate the games motto: “The Happy Games” as more of a whimsical architectural response that would overshadow the heavy, authoritarian stadium in Berlin.

More of the 1972 Olympic Stadium in Munich after the break.