Happy Birthday I.M. Pei

Courtesy of http://blog.newx.com/

Ieoh Ming Pei, the Chinese-American architect who is arguably the greatest living member of the modernist generation of architects, turns 97 today. When he received his Pritzker Prize in 1983, the jury citation stated that he “has given this century some of its most beautiful interior spaces and exterior forms.”

Though known as a modernist, Pei has rejected the implications of globalism inherent in the “International Style,” instead advocating contextual development and variation in style. He has commented that “the important distinction is between a stylistic approach to the design; and an analytical approach giving the process of due consideration to time, place, and purpose.” On a trip to in 1974 he even urged Chinese architects to look more to their architectural tradition, rather than designing in a Western style.

Pei’s most well known work is likely his crystalline extension to the Louvre in Paris; other highly influential works include the Bank of China Tower in Hong Kong, the East Building of the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC and the JFK Presidential Library in Boston.

To celebrate I.M. Pei’s birthday, we invite you to take a look over the catalog of his works here on ArchDaily:

Infographic: The Bauhaus, Where Form Follows Function

UPDATE: In honor of the 81st anniversary of the day the closed in 1933, we’re re-publishing this popular infographic, which was originally published April 16th, 2012.

From the “starchitect” to “architecture for the 99%,” we are witnessing a shift of focus in the field of architecture. However, it’s in the education system where these ideas really take root and grow. This sea change inspired us to explore past movements, influenced by economic shifts, war and the introduction of new technologies, and take a closer look at the bauhaus movement.

Often associated with being anti-industrial, the Arts and Crafts Movement had dominated the field before the start of the Bauhaus in 1919. The Bauhaus’ focus was to merge design with industry, providing well designed products for the many.

The Bauhaus not only impacted design and architecture on an international level, but also revolutionized the way design schools conceptualize education as a means of imparting an integrated design approach where form follows function.

Films & Architecture: “My Architect”

This week we will propose the first documentary of the list within our section of Films & Architecture. There is not much to say about the figure of Kahn, since it has been worldwide recognized. Nevertheless this is a film that captures in a magnificent way the greatness of Kahn’s work through his son’s journey. I guess everyone related somehow with architecture will feel touched by this extraordinary recording. Let us know in the comments what is (or was) your experience watching the film.

Fourth Annual Leonore and Walter Annenberg Award for Diplomacy through the Arts Presented to I.M. Pei

© Laurie Lambrecht

The Foundation for Art and Preservation in Embassies (FAPE) recently announced that it will honor architect I.M. Pei with the fourth annual Leonore and Walter Annenberg Award for Diplomacy through the Arts. The award will be presented at a dinner at the U.S. Department of State’s Diplomatic Reception Rooms today, May 15, 2012. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will host FAPE’s members at the event, and FAPE Chairman Jo Carole Lauder, will present the award to Mr. Pei. The award was established to recognize American individuals who have demonstrated long-term excellence and creative innovation, and recent past honorees include: Agnes Gund, and Mayor of City, Michael Bloomberg. More information on the award after the break.

Rockefeller Arts Center Expansion / Deborah Berke & Partners Architects

Render - Courtesy of

Deborah Berke & Partners Architects have released their plans for the expansion and renovation of ’s 1969 Michael C. Rockefeller Arts Center (RAC). Located at Fredonia’s State University College in New York, the visual and performing arts complex has served as a major cultural center for western New York and northwestern Pennsylvania. Continue reading after the break for more.

Trees of the Architects

Via The All Nighter

We found this great image from The All Nighter – a tumblr dedicated to students who want to share and prospective students who would like to know about the architecture studio experience. The ArchDaily team would like to wish you a wonderful holiday season and a happy new year!

AD Classics: Everson Museum / I.M. Pei

© Jesse Ganes

With a collection focused largely on American art and ceramics, the Everson Museum exists as a structure that is more than just a vault for art. Designed in 1968 by , the structure sought to simultaneously challenge the traditional museum typology through its innovative form while also existing as an object of modern art in its own right. Pei conceived the Everson as an open structure with access to its interior from all of its exposed sides.

 

AD Classics: Bank of China Tower / I.M. Pei

Photo by Stephen Chipp - http://www.flickr.com/photos/stephenchipp/

When commissioned to design the Bank of Tower on an intricate inland site, was requested to create an unavoidably tall unique headquarters in a typhoon-prone region that would represent the aspirations of the Chinese people yet also symbolize good will toward the British Colony. The solution assimilates architecture and engineering simultaneously, involving an asymmetrical tower that informs both skyline and street. The Bank of China Tower stands 70 stories tall, reaching a height of 1,209 feet. At the time of its opening in May 1990, it was the tallest building in Asia and still remains one of the tallest in Hong Kong.

Texas Society of Architects’ 25-Year Award Presented to I. M. Pei & Partners’ Fountain Place

© Andreas Praefcke / Wikimedia Commons

Each year the Society of Architects recognizes a building that was completed 25-50 years ago which they believe has “stood the test of time by retaining its central form, character, and overall architectural integrity”.  This year, the prestigious honor is awarded to Fountain Place, designed by Henry Cobb of I. M. Pei & Partners and completed back in 1986 in , Texas.

Architecture City Guide: Madrid

This week, with the help of our readers, our Architecture City Guide is headed to Madrid. As the third largest city in the European Union, Madrid is the economic and political capital of Spain. The streets and neighborhoods for the most part remains historic, but the city is punctuated with moments of engaging and interesting contemporary architecture. For those who have followed our city guides, you will have noticed that this is our second stop in Spain. That said, Madrid is distinctly different from Barcelona. The differences between the two are manifested in their architecture, both old and new. Our lists only cover relatively recent projects, but a quick glance at the two will give you a sense of the differing cultures and lifestyles (Barcelona’s City Guide). Both lists are far from complete and we are looking to add to them in the near future. In the meantime add more of your favorites to the comment section below.

To check out other cities visit our world map or our Architecture City Guide  page.

The Architecture City Guide: Madrid list and corresponding map after the break.

AD Classics: JFK Presidential Library / I.M. Pei

Photo by Daniel Cooper - http://www.flickr.com/photos/doitintheroad/

After a nine year process and fourteen possible architects the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library was finally finished and dedicated on October 20, 1979. Architect ’s signature geometric shapes of concrete steel and glass created an appropriate stately monumentality. A juxtaposition of spaces and light quality along with a defined and lucid circulation creates a logical story line of its namesake.

Architecture City Guide: Berlin

This week, with the help of our readers, our Architecture City Guide is headed to . The twentieth century changed nearly all cities, but perhaps none more so than . From its destruction in World War II that left few historic buildings intact to its division until 1989 that brought together the architecture of two competing ideologies into one city, ’s modern and contemporary architecture speaks to a past that seldom accompanies such recent additions. The city is filled with new and wonderful architecture that might not have found space in other cities in Europe. With that in mind, we were unable feature all our readers’ suggestions on the first go around. We will be adding to the list in the near future, so please add more of your favorites in the comment section below. Once again, thanks to all our readers for your help.

The Architecture City Guide: Berlin list and corresponding map after the break.

Architecture City Guide: Paris

This week, with the help of our readers, our Architecture City Guide is headed to . For centuries has been the laboratory where innovative architects and artists have come to test their ideas. This has created a city that has bit of everything. Where the architecture of some cities seems to undergo phases of punctuated equilibrium, ’s architectural fossil record gives an impression of gradualism; all the missing links are there. This makes it easy to trace the origins of the most contemporary ideas throughout history. Nothing seems to come out of nowhere. If you look around you kind find the design’s inspiration running through the city’s Roman, Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Rocco, Neo-Classical, Empire, Art Nouveau, Art Deco, Modern, Post-Modern, and Contemporary Architecture. Seen in another context, many of ’s buildings might seem out of place, but the bones of this city support the newest iterations on the oldest and most profound questions. The 24 contemporary designs that comprise our list probably should not be viewed outside of this context, even though that is the stated goal of some of the designs.

As the most visited city in the world and arguably the capital of culture, it is impossible to capture the essence of Paris in 24 modern/contemporary designs. Our readers supplied us with great suggestions, and we really appreciate the help and use of their photographs. The list is far from complete and we realize that many iconic buildings are not yet on the list. We will be adding to it in the near feature, so please add more in the comments section below.

The Architecture City Guide: Paris list and corresponding map after the break.

Architecture City Guide: Columbus

This week our Architecture City Guide is headed to Columbus; Indiana that is. We have already made the trip to Columbus, Ohio. This lesser known Columbus only has a population of 44,000 people, but for what it lacks in size it makes up in architecture. Columbus, perhaps, has more notable modern architecture buildings per capita than any city in the United States. In fact, it was much harder narrowing the list down to 12 projects than finding enough for the city guide. With the buildings not on the list, it will be impossible to please everyone. Notably our list doesn’t even include Romaldo Giurgola’s Columbus East High School, Cesar Pelli’s Commons Centre and Mall, and ’s Republic Newspaper Building. Take a look at the 12 on our list and add your favorites in the comment section below.

The Architecture City Guide: Columbus list and corresponding map after the break.

AD Classics: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University / I.M. Pei

© Cornell University

With a desire to make a dramatic statement while maintaining an optimal amount of scenic views, transparent open spaces and windows beautifully contrast the heaviness and boldness of the rectangular forms of concrete.

More on the at Cornell University by after the break.

New Yorkers top Architectural Events of 2010

© Iwan Baan

This years architectural events in New York are bound to have a meaningful effect on the years to come; the decision by NYU to add another tower complementing I.M Pei’s existing Silver Towers complex (rather than their initial plan to demolish them), the opening of the first section of Brooklyn Bridge Park coupled with the completion of the High Line has re-established as a key model to reference when it comes to designing urban public space, and finally construction began on Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial, by Louis Kahn, to name a few.

From transportation, urban planning, exhibitions, residential and office buildings follow the break to see the New Yorkers list of some of the most influential decisions surrounding architecture over the past year in New York.

Architecture City Guide: New York City

© flickr: nickmilleruk

The Architecture City Guide series is back, this week featuring City.  Grab a scarf and hat and hit the streets to check out some of the great architecture that NYC has to offer.  Think we left something out?  Add your can’t miss NYC buildings to our comments below.

Follow the break for our New York City list and a corresponding map!

AD Classics: East Building, National Gallery of Art / I.M. Pei

©Flickr: username- Andy961

What would eventually become known as the West Building of the National Gallery of Art, the initial portion of the museum was financed by art collector Andrew Mellon. Architect John Russel Pope was hired to design the museum in the late 1930s, with the intentions of leaving space for future additions.

Mellon’s son Paul had the responsibility of choosing the architect for the expanse years later, so he turned to one of the most forward-thinking architects of the twentieth century, .

More on the by I.M. Pei after the break.