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Spotlight

Spotlight: Walter Gropius

07:30 - 18 May, 2018
Bauhaus, 1925. Image ©  Thomas Lewandovski
Bauhaus, 1925. Image © Thomas Lewandovski

One of the most highly regarded architects of the 20th century, Walter Gropius (18 May 1883 – 5 July 1969) was one of the founding fathers of Modernism, and the founder of the Bauhaus, the German "School of Building" that embraced elements of art, architecture, graphic design, interior design, industrial design, and typography in its design, development and production.

Spotlight: Daniel Libeskind

06:00 - 12 May, 2018
Denver Art Museum. Image © Bitter Brecht
Denver Art Museum. Image © Bitter Brecht

In the architecture world, few designers can claim to have a more clearly-defined style than Daniel Libeskind (born May 12, 1946). Much of Libeskind's work is instantly recognizable for its angular forms, intersecting planes, and frequent use of diagonally-sliced windows, a style that he has used to great effect in museums and memorials—but which he has equally adapted to conference centers, skyscrapers, and shopping malls.

Denver Art Museum. Image © Bitter Brecht Jewish Museum, Berlin. Image © Mal Booth Dresden’s Military History Museum. Image © Bitter Bredt, Courtesy of Studio Daniel LIbeskind Mons International Congress Xperience (MICX) / Studio Libeskind + H2a Architecte & Associés. Image © Hufton+Crow + 18

Spotlight: Gordon Bunshaft

10:30 - 9 May, 2018
Spotlight: Gordon Bunshaft, AD Classics: Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library. Image © <a href='https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beinecke_Rare_Book_%26_Manuscript_Library#/media/File:Beinecke-Rare-Book-Manuscript-Library-Yale-University-Hewitt-Quadrangle-New-Haven-Connecticut-Apr-2014-a.jpg'>Wikimedia Commons user Gunnar Klack</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/'>CC BY-SA 4.0</a>
AD Classics: Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library. Image © Wikimedia Commons user Gunnar Klack licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

As lead designer of the Lever House and many of America’s most historically prominent buildings, Pritzker Prize-winning architect Gordon Bunshaft (9 May 1909 – 6 August 1990) is credited with ushering in a new era of Modernist skyscraper design and corporate architecture. A stern figure and a loyal advocate of the International Style, Bunshaft spent the majority of his career as partner and lead designer for SOM, who have referred to him as “a titan of industry, a decisive army general, an architectural John Wayne.”

Hajj Terminal at King Abdulaziz Airport, Jeddah. Image © SOM - Jay Langlois | Owens-Corning Beinecke Rare Book Library. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/joevare/5524134719'>Flickr user joevare</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/'>CC BY-ND 2.0</a> Solow Buliding. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Solow_Building_New_York_August_2012.jpg'>Wikimedia user King of Hearts</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> W.R. Grace Building. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:W._R._Grace_Building,_New_York,_NY_10018,_USA_-_Jan_2013.jpg'>Wikimedia user WestportWiki</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> + 9

Spotlight: Rafael Moneo

04:30 - 9 May, 2018
Spotlight: Rafael Moneo, National Museum of Roman Art. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/pictfactory/2842858053'>Flickr user pictfactory</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a>
National Museum of Roman Art. Image © Flickr user pictfactory licensed under CC BY 2.0

As the first ever Spanish architect to receive the Pritzker PrizeRafael Moneo (born 9 May 1937) is known for his highly contextual buildings which nonetheless remain committed to modernist stylings. His designs are regularly credited as achieving the elusive quality of "timelessness"; as critic Robert Campbell wrote in his essay about Moneo for the Pritzker Prize, "a Moneo building creates an awareness of time by remembering its antecedents. It then layers this memory against its mission in the contemporary world."

National Museum of Roman Art. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/pictfactory/2840558654'>Flickr user pictfactory</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> Columbia University Northwest Corner Building / Rafael Moneo, Davis Brody Bond, and Moneo Brock Studio. Image © Michael Moran Studio Puig Tower / Rafael Moneo + Antonio Puig, Josep Riu GCA Architects + Lucho Marcial. Image © Rafael Vargas Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, Los Angeles. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/cwsteeds/5324514176/'>Flickr user cwsteeds</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> + 11

Spotlight: Herzog & de Meuron

06:00 - 8 May, 2018
Spotlight: Herzog & de Meuron, VitraHaus. Photography by Iwan Baan © Vitra
VitraHaus. Photography by Iwan Baan © Vitra

Led by Jacques Herzog (born 19 April 1950) and Pierre de Meuron (born 8 May 1950), most descriptions of Herzog & de Meuron projects are almost paradoxical: in one paragraph they will be praised for their dedication to tradition and vernacular forms, in the next for their thoroughly modern innovation. However, in the hands of Herzog & de Meuron this is no paradox, as the internationally renowned architectural duo combine tradition and innovation in such a way that the two elements actually enhance each other.

VitraHaus. Photography by Iwan Baan © Vitra 1111 Lincoln Road. Image © Nelson Garrido, Reprinted with permission from MBeach1, LLLP. Parrish Art Museum. Image © Matthu Placek Messe Basel New Hall. Image Courtesy of Messe Basel + 29

Spotlight: Christian de Portzamparc

06:00 - 5 May, 2018
Spotlight: Christian de Portzamparc, Philharmonie Luxembourg, Luxembourg. Image © Wade Zimmerman
Philharmonie Luxembourg, Luxembourg. Image © Wade Zimmerman

Born on the 5th of May 1944 in what was at the time the French Protectorate of Morocco, French architect Christian de Portzamparc had doubts about continuing with architecture while studying in the 1960s, questioning modernist ideals and the discipline's lack of freedom compared to art. Instead, he spent a decade attempting to understand the role of architecture, before returning triumphantly with a new model of iterative urban design that emphasized open neighborhoods based around landmark "poles of attraction" and a varied series of high-profile commissions that combine a sense of purpose and place.

The French Embassay, Berlin. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Berlin,_Mitte,_Pariser_Platz,_Botschaft_Frankreich.jpg'>Wikimedia user Jörg Zägel</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> Philharmonie Luxembourg, Luxembourg. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/borkurdotnet/5696828844'>Flickr user borkurdotnet</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> Chateau Cheval Blanc Winer, Saint-Émilion. Image © Erik Saillet La  Musée Hergé, Louvain-la-Neuve. Image © Nicolás Borel + 17

Spotlight: Jane Jacobs

10:30 - 4 May, 2018
Jane Jacobs, then chairperson of a civic group in Greenwich Village, at a press conference in 1961. Image <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Jane_Jacobs.jpg'>via Wikimedia</a>, photograph by Phil Stanziola (Public Domain)
Jane Jacobs, then chairperson of a civic group in Greenwich Village, at a press conference in 1961. Image via Wikimedia, photograph by Phil Stanziola (Public Domain)

Throughout her career, social activist and urban writer Jane Jacobs (May 4, 1916 – April 25, 2006) fought against corporate globalization and urged post-war urban planners and developers to remember the importance of community and the human scale. Despite having no formal training, she radically changed urban planning policy through the power of observation and personal experience. Her theories on how design can affect community and creativity continue to hold relevance today—influencing everything from the design of mega-cities to tiny office spaces.

Spotlight: Aldo Rossi

04:00 - 3 May, 2018
Spotlight: Aldo Rossi, San Cataldo Cemetery. Image © Laurian Ghinitoiu
San Cataldo Cemetery. Image © Laurian Ghinitoiu

Ada Louise Huxtable once described him as “a poet who happens to be an architect.” Italian architect Aldo Rossi (3 May 1931 – 4 September 1997) was known for his drawings, urban theory, and for winning the Pritzker Prize in 1990. Rossi also directed the Venice Biennale in 1985 and 1986—one of only two people to have served as director twice.

Mojiko Hotel. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3AMojiko_Hotel.jpg'>Wikimedia user Wiiii</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> Quartier Schützenstrasse. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3ABerlin%2C_Mitte%2C_Zimmerstrasse_68-69%2C_Quartier_Schuetzenstrasse.jpg'>Wikimedia user Jörg Zägel</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> Bonnefantenmuseum. Image © James Taylor-Foster Gallaratese Quarter / Aldo Rossi & Carlo Aymonino. Image © Gili Merin + 8

Spotlight: I.M. Pei

12:30 - 26 April, 2018
Spotlight: I.M. Pei, Le Grande Louvre. Image © Greg Kristo
Le Grande Louvre. Image © Greg Kristo

Chinese-American architect Ieoh Ming Pei (born April 26, 1917), is arguably the greatest living member of the modernist generation of architects. 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."

Spotlight: Gert Wingårdh

11:30 - 26 April, 2018
Spotlight: Gert Wingårdh, Aula Medica. Image © Tord-Rikard Söderström
Aula Medica. Image © Tord-Rikard Söderström

One of Sweden’s most esteemed living architects, Gert Wingårdh (born 26 April 1951) brought Swedish architecture out of the tradition of the International Style and into contemporary times with his playful design spirit and love of eye-catching materials. With his use of bright colors and geometric motifs, his recent buildings have been described as "Maximalist" or "Modern Baroque."

Aula Medica. Image © Tord-Rikard Söderström Kuggen. Image © Tord-Rikard Söderström Facts Emporia. Image © Tord-Rikard Söderström Quality Hotel Friends / Karolina Keyzer + Wingårdhs. Image © Tord-Rikard Söderström + 15

Spotlight: Peter Zumthor

05:30 - 26 April, 2018
The Therme Vals. Image © Fernando Guerra |  FG+SG
The Therme Vals. Image © Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

Known for his sensuous materiality and attention to place, 2009 Pritzker Laureate Peter Zumthor (born April 26, 1943) is one the most revered architects of the 21st century. Shooting to fame on the back of The Therme Vals and Kunsthaus Bregenz, completed just a year apart in 1996 and 1997, his work privileges the experiential qualities of individual buildings over the technological, cultural and theoretical focus often favored by his contemporaries.

Bruder Klaus Field Chapel. Image © Samuel Ludwig Steilneset Memorial. Image © Andrew Meredith Saint Benedict Chapel. Image © Felipe Camus Kunsthaus Bregenz. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/heyitschili/4163419615'>Flickr user heyitschili</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/'>CC BY-ND 2.0</a> + 16

Spotlight: William Pereira

10:30 - 25 April, 2018
Spotlight: William Pereira, Geisel Library. Image © Darren Bradley
Geisel Library. Image © Darren Bradley

Winner of the 1942 Acadamy Award for Best Special Effects, William Pereira (April 25, 1909 – November 13, 1985) also designed some of America's most iconic examples of futurist architecture, with his heavy stripped down functionalism becoming the symbol of many US institutions and cities. Working with his more prolific film-maker brother Hal Pereira, William Pereira's talent as an art director translated into a long and prestigious career creating striking and idiosyncratic buildings across the West Coast of America.

Transamerica Pyramid. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/jkz/6371624443'>Flickr user jkz</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/'>CC BY-SA 2.0</a> Thene Building, LAX. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/132084522@N05/16747302728'>Flickr user Sam valadi</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> Jack Langson Library at University of California (Irvine). ImageCourtesy of <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:UCILibrary.jpg'>Wikimedia user TFNorman</a> (public domain) Geisel Library. Image © Darren Bradley + 12

Spotlight: James Stirling

06:00 - 22 April, 2018
Spotlight: James Stirling, Staatsgalerie, Stuttgart, Germany (1977–1984), 1984. Alastair Hunter, photographer. Image Courtesy of Canadian Centre for Architecture
Staatsgalerie, Stuttgart, Germany (1977–1984), 1984. Alastair Hunter, photographer. Image Courtesy of Canadian Centre for Architecture

British architect and Pritzker Laureate Sir James Stirling (22 April 1926 – 25 June 1992) grew up in Liverpool, one of the two industrial powerhouses of the British North West, and began his career subverting the compositional and theoretical ideas behind the Modern Movement. Citing a wide-range of influences—from Colin Rowe, a forefather of Contextualism, to Le Corbusier, and from architects of the Italian Renaissance to the Russian Constructivist movement—Stirling forged a unique set of architectural beliefs that manifest themselves in his works. Indeed his architecture, commonly described as "nonconformist," consistently caused annoyance in conventional circles.

University of Cambridge History Faculty. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:History_Faculty_University_of_Cambridge.jpg'>Wikimedia user Solipsist</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 2.0</a> Clore Gallery, Tate Britain, London. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Clore_Gallery_London_Dec07.JPG'>Wikimedia user Elekhh</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> The Florey Building at Queen's College, Oxford University. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/seier/5107210108'>Flickr user seier</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> Department of Engineering at the University of Leicester. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Leicester_University_Engineering_Building_2.jpg'>Wikimedia user NotFromUtrecht</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> + 13

Spotlight: Peter Behrens

06:00 - 14 April, 2018
Spotlight: Peter Behrens, The AEG Turbine Factory. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Berlin_AEG_Turbinenfabrik.jpg'>Wikimedia user Doris Antony</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a>
The AEG Turbine Factory. Image © Wikimedia user Doris Antony licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

If asked to name buildings by German architect and designer Peter Behrens (14 April 1868 – 27 February 1940), few people would be able to answer with anything other than his AEG Turbine Factory in Berlin. His style was not one that lends itself easily to canonization; indeed, even the Turbine Factory itself is difficult to appreciate without an understanding of its historical context. Despite this, Behrens' achievements are not to be underestimated, and his importance to the development of architecture might best be understood by looking at three young architects who worked in his studio around 1910: Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, and Walter Gropius.

Spotlight: Jørn Utzon

07:40 - 9 April, 2018
Spotlight: Jørn Utzon, Sydney Opera House. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/lutherankorean/2652730156'>Flickr user lutherankorean<a/> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/'>CC BY-ND 2.0</a>
Sydney Opera House. Image © Flickr user lutherankorean licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

Pritzker Prize winning architect Jørn Utzon (9 April 1918 – 29 November 2008) was the relatively unknown Dane who, on the 29th January 1957, was announced as the winner of the "International competition for a national opera house at Bennelong Point, Sydney’." When speaking about this iconic building, Louis Kahn stated that "The sun did not know how beautiful its light was, until it was reflected off this building." Unfortunately, Utzon never saw the Sydney Opera House, his most popular work, completed.

Bagsværd Church. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/seier/5958688179/'>Flickr user seier</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> Kuwait National Assembly. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/xiquinho/3447464666/'>Flickr user xiquinho</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/'>CC BY-SA 2.0</a> Utzon's Home on Mallorca. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/drzimage/475618855/'>Flickr user drzimage</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/'>CC BY-SA 2.0</a> Sydney Opera House. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/jimmyharris/114537716/'>Flickr user jimmyharris</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> + 17

Spotlight: Richard Neutra

11:00 - 8 April, 2018
Spotlight: Richard Neutra, Lovell House, 1929. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Lovell_House,_Los_Angeles,_California.JPG'>Wikimedia user Los Angeles</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a>
Lovell House, 1929. Image © Wikimedia user Los Angeles licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Though Modernism is sometimes criticized for imposing universal rules on different people and areas, it was Richard J. Neutra's (April 8, 1892 – April 16, 1970) intense client focus that won him acclaim. His personalized and flexible version of modernism created a series of private homes that were—and still are—highly sought after, making him one of the United States' most significant mid-century modernists. His architecture of simple geometry and airy steel and glass became the subject of the iconic photographs of Julius Schulman, and came to stand for an entire era of American design.

Miller House, 1938. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/28238346@N00/338006894/'>Flickr user IK's World Trip</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> Cyclorama, Gettsyburg. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Gettysburg_Cyclorama_Neutra_PA3.jpg'>Wikimedia user Acroterion</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> Lovell House, 1929. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/aseles/6149131597'>Flickr user aseles</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/'>CC BY-ND 2.0</a> Kaufmann House, 1947. Image © Barbara Alfors 2000 <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kaufman_House_Palm_Springs.jpg'>via Wikimedia</a? licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> + 7

Spotlight: Kisho Kurokawa

04:00 - 8 April, 2018
Nakagin Capsule Tower, Tokyo. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Nakagin.jpg'>Wikimedia user Jordy Meow</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a>
Nakagin Capsule Tower, Tokyo. Image © Wikimedia user Jordy Meow licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Kisho Kurokawa (April 8th 1934 – October 12th 2007) was one of Japan's leading architects of the 20th century, perhaps most well-known as one of the founders of the Metabolist movement of the 1960s. Throughout the course of his career, Kurokawa advocated a philosophical approach to understanding architecture that was manifest in his completed projects throughout his life.

Nagoya City Art Museum. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:KurokawaNagoyaCityArtMuseum.jpg'>Wikimedia user Chris 73</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> Toshiba-IHI Pavilion at the 1970 Osaka Expo. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/m-louis/1209773173'>Flickr user m-louis</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/'>CC BY-SA 2.0</a> Van Gogh Museum Exposition Wing, Amsterdam. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/14174853@N04/4192474953/'>Flickr user kmaschke</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/'>CC BY-SA 2.0</a> Nakagin Capsule Tower, Tokyo. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Nakagin.jpg'>Wikimedia user Jordy Meow</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en'>CC BY-SA 3.0</a> + 8

Spotlight: Mies van der Rohe

07:30 - 27 March, 2018
Spotlight: Mies van der Rohe, Barcelona Pavilion. Image © Gili Merin
Barcelona Pavilion. Image © Gili Merin

Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (27 March 1886 – 17 August 1969) is one of the most influential architects of the 20th century, known for his role in the development of the most enduring architectural style of the era: modernism. Born in Aachen, Germany, Mies' career began in the influential studio of Peter Behrens, where Mies worked alongside other two other titans of modernism, Walter Gropius and Le Corbusier. For almost a century, Mies' minimalist style has proved very popular; his famous aphorism "less is more" is still widely used, even by those who are unaware of its origins.

Neue National Gallery in Berlin. Image © Guillermo Hevia García The Farnsworth House. Image © Greg Robbins IBM Building. Image © Bluffton University Seagram Building. Image © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:NewYorkSeagram_04.30.2008.JPG'>Wikimedia user Noroton</a> licensed under public domain + 14