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Mies van der Rohe: The Latest Architecture and News

Classics and Good Architecture: Modern Housing on the American Continent 1930-1960

Much of the production of modern architecture on the American continent was based on the model of European architects who, with their works, projected the fundamental premises and ideas for modern living. These pillars of architecture were transferred and consequently adapted to the American territory, introducing, at the same time, their own characteristics according to the territorial, socio-cultural and economic context. 

We understand that good architecture is that which serves as a model for solving problems inherent to the discipline of architecture in general. This is why certain references that we consider today as "classics" are examples of good architectural practices that have been appropriated by other architects, taking the pertinent and necessary elements to achieve a result in accordance with the particular context. 

Demolished and Rebuilt: The Identity of Architectural Replicas

The rights to reconstruct Kisho Kurokawa's iconic Nakagin Capsule Tower are currently sold on one of the largest NFT sites. While the tower’s demolition has begun earlier this year, the auction sells the right to rebuild the structure, in both the metaverse and in real space. The idea of recreating the Metabolic building in a virtual space seems natural. It could allow a larger community to explore an iconic piece of architecture and encourage them to experiment with it, an initiative in line with Metabolist ideals. On the other hand, the idea of reconstructing a demolished historical building in the physical world raises a different set of conflicting emotions. Architectural replicas are not the norm, but their existence raises questions regarding the identity and authenticity of works of architecture.

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The 3rd Lilly Reich Grant for Equality in Architecture is Awarded to a Research Project Celebrating Anna Bofill Levi

Fundació Mies van der Rohe has announced that a research project focused on Anna Bofill Levi has been awarded the third Lilly Reich Grant for Equality in Architecture. The project, titled “La arquitectura como contracanto: 1977-1996”, was initiated by architects Ma Elia Gutiérrez Mozo, José Parra Martínez, Ana Gilsanz Díaz, and Joaquín Arnau Amo. The research contextualizes the architectural works of pianist, architect, and composer Anna Bofill Levi and brings into focus the result of her multidisciplinary approach, intertwining practices and research in design, architecture and music.

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Rediscovering the Barcelona Pavilion Through its Material Innovations: Steel, Glass and Marble

Mies Van der Rohe and Lilly Reich’s German Pavilion for the 1929 Barcelona International Exhibition is known as the most written-about modern building. But no matter how many times the pavilion is redrawn for analysis, there are always new angles from which to interpret it. Identifying its capacity to redefine the German image, while genuinely introducing new strategies that continue present in contemporary architecture projects are two key elements of the architects’ intentions behind their design strategy.

'We have to get away from the coldness of functionalism. It is a mistake to believe that to understand the problem of modern architecture it is enough to recognize a necessity for rational solutions. Beauty in architecture, which is a necessity and finality for our time as for past periods, cannot be attained unless we can see beyond simple utility when we build.' – Mies Van der Rohe

Campus Sacred Spaces Are Changing

This article was originally published on Common Edge.

In a time of global unrest, rising intolerance, and, some might argue, increasing secularization, is the campus chapel relevant anymore? Might it disappear altogether? As it turns out, campus sacred space appears to be transforming to play a more important role as many universities focus on educating their students to be more globally aware.

Indiana University Inaugurates Long-Lost Project Designed by Mies van der Rohe

Indiana University inaugurated a new shared facility for the Eskenazi School of Art, Architecture + Design, which materializes a recently rediscovered design by Mies van der Rohe. The 1952 project intended for a fraternity house on the same IU Bloomington campus was entrusted to New York-based firm Thomas Phifer and Partners to be adapted to contemporary building codes and its current academic function while preserving the intended architectural aesthetic. The two-storey, 930 square meter building has officially opened to students and faculty.

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The Barcelona Pavilion, an Instrument of Expression: 10 Interventions to Reflect on Contemporary Architecture

In 1929, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Lilly Reich design the German National Pavilion for the 1929 Barcelona International Exhibition. The official reception for the exhibition was held there, presided over by King Alfonso XIII and the German authorities. From then on, the story is well known to everyone. A symbolic work of the Modern Movement, the Pavilion has been extensively studied and interpreted, and has inspired the work of several generations of architects.

40 Shortlisted Projects Announced for the EU Mies Award 2022

The European Commission and the Mies van der Rohe Foundation have announced the 40 shortlisted works that will compete for the 2022 European Union Prize for Contemporary ArchitectureMies van der Rohe Award. The shortlist featured projects built across 18 different European countries, with Spain, Austria, and France topping the list with 5 entries each. The winners will be announced in April 2022 and the Award ceremony will take place in May 2022.

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Intervention at the Mies van der Rohe Pavilion Reflects on the Rehabilitation of Large-scale Housing Blocks

The Mies van der Rohe foundation presents “Never Demolish” a temporary intervention by curators Ilka and Andreas Ruby that explores the “Transformation of 530 dwellings in the Grand Parc Bordeaux” project by the Pritzker laureates Lacaton & Vassal architects, Frédéric Druot Architecture, and Christophe Hutin Architecture. Running until December 16th, the pavilion is transformed into a domestic space that allows visitors to "deepen the debate on housing and the rehabilitation model of the large-scale blocks of the 60s and 70s".

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The Simple Architectural Idea That Took Over Chicago

In Chicago, black or silver-colored towers designed by Mies van der Rohe are sprinkled across the city from the north to the south. They all sprang up within a relatively short period of time and constitute — in combination with some faithful homages — what’s called the Second Chicago School of Architecture. This timeline makes it seem like Mies' strategies sprang out of nowhere and like they were born already fully developed. This video takes a look at how these tower strategies evolved from smaller projects to larger ones by paying special attention to their section. Whereas open plans promise ultimate fluidity, in section, Mies' buildings present another idea entirely. In this direction, difference and discretion dominate and symmetry rules. All of this is in service of developing a close connection between the occupant and the distant horizon.

Chicago City Guide: 23 Buildings You Shouldn’t Miss

On August 12, 1833, the Town of Chicago had roughly 200 inhabitants. Four years later, in 1837, it was upgraded to The City of Chicago – an interesting fact given that there are still 19 incorporated towns in Illinois. The Great Chicago Fire of 1871 killed 300 people, destroyed about 3.3 square miles (9 km2), and left more than 100,000 residents homeless. However, by that time Chicago had become the world’s fastest-growing city and its population had risen over 300,000 inhabitants. The fire meant these ambitious citizens had to start again.

With admirable strength, the city was reborn from the ashes and some of Chicago’s best architecture was constructed immediately after. Structures like the Rookery Building (1888, Frank Lloyd Wright), the Auditorium Building (1889, Louis Sullivan) and the Monadnock Building (1893, Burnham & Root, Holabird & Roche) are a few examples of the high standards the city was aiming for.

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The Second Studio Podcast: Interview with Phyllis Lambert

The Second Studio (formerly The Midnight Charette) is an explicit podcast about design, architecture, and the everyday. Hosted by Architects David Lee and Marina Bourderonnet, it features different creative professionals in unscripted conversations that allow for thoughtful takes and personal discussions.

A variety of subjects are covered with honesty and humor: some episodes are interviews, while others are tips for fellow designers, reviews of buildings and other projects, or casual explorations of everyday life and design. The Second Studio is also available on iTunes, Spotify, and YouTube.

This week David and Marina are joined by Phyllis Lambert, an architect, the Planning Director of the Seagram Headquarters, and the Founding Director Emeritus of the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montréal.

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Temporary Architecture: Innovation, Testing-Ground and Entertainment

Beyond "experience tourism" and light entertainment, temporary architecture is a fertile ground for testing ideas, examining places, popularizing new concepts and technologies. Taking a wide array of forms, from disaster relief projects and utilitarian structures to design experiments, architectural statements and playful installations, transient structures showcase alternative visions for the built environment, opening up new possibilities and questioning established norms. As temporary architecture now seems at odds with sustainability imperatives, the following discusses the value of temporary architecture as a vehicle of experimentation, advancing design and engaging communities.

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Mies van der Rohe’s Neue Nationalgalerie Reopens with an Alexander Calder Exhibition

After being closed for six and a half years for a renovation by David Chipperfield Architects, the Berlin museum reopened Sunday, August 22.