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Architects and Their Chairs “L”

Posted by Lynne van den Berg On December 15th

 

                                “L” Is For Loos

Adolf Loos, 1922 /Trude Fleischmann /sc                                                       Adolf Loos, 1922 /Trude Fleischmann /sc

 “What I call culture is that balance between our physical, mental and spiritual being which alone can guarantee sensible thought and action.”       Adolf Loos

 

Adolf Loos was born in Brünn in the Austro-Hungarian Empire (now Brno, Czech Republic) in 1870 and died on August 23, 1933. “He was one of the most influential European architects of the late 19th century and is often noted for his literary discourse that foreshadowed the foundations of the entire modernist movement.” archdaly

 

"Knieschwimmer" easy chair by Adolf Loos, 1905

              “Knieschwimmer” easy chair by Adolf Loos, 1905

                                      Adolf Loos and the Vienna Secession
A group of artists and designers in Austria become known as the Vienna Secession. In 1897 they withdrew from the Vienna Academy in protest because the Academy would not accept modernist works. Gustav Klimt the painter headed up the group.

In Austria the Vienna Secession group of artists and designers created a form of Art Nouveau. The Vienna Secession group of creative individuals had a great impact on what we call modern design.    CreativeBuzzingwordpress.com

 

Set of 6 Adolf Loos Thonet Vienna Café Museum Art Nouveau Bentwood Chairs

Set of 6 Adolf Loos Thonet Vienna Café Museum Art Nouveau Bentwood Chairs

 

Adolf Loos studied architecture in Bohemia and Dresden and was influenced by a three-year stay in the United States (1893-96) where he was impressed by the innovative efficiency of American industrial buildings. Speaking about the development of his Raumplan design in 1930, Adolf Loos said: “My architecture is not conceived in plans, but in spaces (cubes). I do not design floor plans, facades, sections. I design spaces. For me, there is no ground floor, first floor etc…. For me, there are only contiguous, continual spaces, rooms, anterooms, terraces etc. Storeys merge and spaces relate to each other. Every space requires a different height: the dining room is surely higher than the pantry, thus the ceilings are set at different levels. To join these spaces in such a way that the rise and fall are not only unobservable but also practical, in this I see what is for others the great secret, although it is for me a great matter of course.”                               http://www.e-architect.co.uk/architects/adolf-loos

socks-studio.com bit.ly/2hKZQxY

                                     socks-studio.com bit.ly/2hKZQxY

Villa Müller in Prague was designed by architect Adolf Loos, assisted by architect Karel Lhota, in 1930 for František Müller and his wife, Milada Müllerová. The client was the owner of a company that specialized in reinforced concrete, so the house was to be a showcase of this (at the time) pioneering technique as well as of the influence of the architect’s theories. The Villa, with its cubic shape and its white and austere façade, embodies in its exterior appearance the principles expoused by the architect in his seminal essay “Ornament and Crime”.     socks-studio.com

 

Adolf Loos, Villa Muller, 1928-1930.                                                             Adolf Loos, Villa Muller, 1928-1930.

mullerovavila.cz                                                             Adolf Loos, Villa Muller, 1928-1930.

 

“The best draftsman can be a poor architect, the best architect a poor draftsman.” Adolf Loos

‘Adolf Loos led the way towards the International Style with several built projects and essays, like his seminal 1908 work ‘Ornament and Crime’. In Le Corbusier’s own words: ‘Loos swept right beneath our feet, and it was a Homeric cleansing — precise, philosophical and logical. In this Loos has had a decisive influence on the destiny of architecture.’    Read more at: wallpaper.com

 

His work has influenced so many architect’s and continues to make it’s impact still today. “The Raumplan concept, developed by Loos in the 1920s as an alternative to traditional stacked floor levels. Instead, he proposed dividing a house’s interior into interconnected multi-level spaces arranged on the basis of their importance.

 

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Adolf Loos Armchair FO Schmidt Austria, 1900 mahogany, brass, leather, brass-plated steel

Adolf Loos Armchair FO Schmidt Austria, 1900 mahogany, leather, brass-plated steel

Elegant Pair of Club Chairs with Bolster Att to Adolf Loos image via 1stdibs

Elegant Pair of Club Chairs with Bolster Att to Adolf Loos image via 1stdibs

1930's Design, Furniture, Applied & Decorative Arts Adolf Loos

1930’s Design, Furniture, Applied & Decorative Arts Adolf Loos
Austria. Loos Drinking Set, c. 1930 // designer Adolf Loos: Lobmeyer

 

Adolf Loos was involved with the group but became concerned with what he thought was a superficial decorative slant in the movement. His work includes bentwood furniture for Thonet.

Adolf Loos was involved with the group but became concerned with what he thought was a superficial decorative slant in the movement. His work includes bentwood furniture for Thonet.

The purpose of of this page is to to provide information and images about mid century and modern architects, their architecture and their furniture designs. We are not providing these posts with the intent of profit, but purely for intersted parties.
We try to supply the correct information and credits to those who originated the intellectual properties. If we have incorrectly stated anything please contact us and we will correct it immediately.

Architects and Their Chairs “K”

Posted by Lynne van den Berg On May 18th

                   “K” is for Kurokawa

 

Organic design … Kisho Kurokawa with a model. Photo: Rob Gilhooly

Organic design … Kisho Kurokawa with a model.  Photo: Rob Gilhooly

 

Kisho Kurokawa struggled to get commissions early in his career and was so poor he made his models from noodles, photographed them after they were dry, then cooked and ate them. SMH.comau

 

image via deviant art http://daaakota.deviantart.com/art/Kisho-Kurokawa-101663852

image via deviant art http://daaakota.deviantart.com/art/Kisho-Kurokawa-101663852

 

*Kurokawa, was a founding member of the influential Metabolism Movement, which advocates buildings that are flexible, organic and replaceable.

* Metabolism (新陳代謝 shinchintaisha?) was a post-war Japanese architectural movement that fused ideas about architectural megastructures with those of organic biological growth. Wikipedia

* Kurokawa, who was fluent in English, was an articulate advocate and a prolific writer of deeply philosophical books that discussed the “age of life” rather than the “age of the machine”. SMH.comau

Kisho Kurokawa was very innovative in his creation of the Nakagin Capsule Tower in 1972, which was the first capsule architecture design. The module was created with the intention of housing traveling businessmen that worked in central Tokyo during the week. It is a prototype for architecture of sustainability and recycleability, as each module can be plugged in to the central core and replaced or exchanged when necessary. ArchDaily

 

Nakagin Capsule 1972 Image via arch daily ©arcspace

Nakagin Capsule  Image via ArchDaily ©arcspace

 

Nakagin Capsule 1972 Image via arch daily ©arcspace

Nakagin Capsule 1972 Image via ArchDaily ©arcspace

 

Fractal Chair by Kisho Kurokawa

Fractal Chair by Kisho Kurokawa

 

Kisho Kurokawa - Edo chair

Kisho Kurokawa – Edo chair

 

Kisho Kurokawa, Edo Armchair, for Tendo Co.

Kisho Kurokawa, Edo Armchair, for Tendo Co.

 

 

The purpose of of this page is to to provide information and images about mid century and modern architects, their architecture and their furniture designs. We are not providing these posts with the intent of profit, but purely for intersted parties.

We try to supply the correct information and credits to those who originated the intellectual properties. If we have incorrectly stated anything please contact us and we will correct it immediately.

 

 

 

Video   https://youtu.be/XKGKe4x5XTw

Kisho Kurokawa – Key Buildings

Designs by Kisho Kurokawa, alphabetical:

Astana – Masterplan, Kazakhstan
1998-2004
Kisho Kurokawa: design competition win

Fukui City Museum of Art, Fukui, Japan
1993-96

Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Hiroshima
1988-89

Kibi-cho City Hall / Kibi Dome, Wakayama, Japan
1993-95

Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
1992-98

Louvain-La-Neuve Museum, Belgium
1990-92

Melbourne Central, Melbourne, Australia
1986-91

The Museum of Modern Art Wakayama, Wakayama, Japan
1990-94

Nagoya City Art Museum, Nagoya, Japan
1983-87

Nakagin Capsule Tower, Ginza, Tokyo, Japan
1970-72

Nara City Museum of Photography, Nara, Japan
1989-91

National Gallery in Tokyo, Roppongi, Tokyo
2000-05
Design: Kishō Kurokawa Architects & Associates ; Nihon Sekkei Inc.
Worlds Spectacular Museum Buildings
photo : Kevin Hemphill
National Art Center Tokyo

National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan
1973-77

Osaka International Convention Centre, Osaka
1994-2000

Saitama Prefectural Museum of Modern Art, Saitama, Japan
1978-82

Singapore Flyer – observation wheel, Marina Bay, Singapore
2005-08
Kisho Kurokawa Architect & Associates with DP Architects

Sony Tower, Osaka, Japan
1972-76

The Sporting Club at Illinois Center, Chicago, USA
1987-90

Toyota City Stadium, Toyota City, Japan
1997-2001

Van Gogh Museum – New Wing, Amsterdam, Netherlands
1990-98

Zenit Stadium, St.Petersburg, Russia
2006-09

Architects and Their Chairs “J”

Posted by Lynne van den Berg On September 14th

  “J” is for Juhl

 

In Copenhagen, A Renaissance for Finn Juhl By Stephen Brookes • Modernism Magazine • Winter 2010

In Copenhagen, A Renaissance for Finn Juhl
        By Stephen Brookes • Modernism Magazine • Winter 2010

Finn Juhl (30 January 1912 – 17 May 1989) was a Danish architect, interior and industrial designer. Juhl was most notably known for his furniture design and for introducing Danish Modern to America in the 1940’s.

“Juhl’s life was, in fact, a roller coaster of fame and obscurity. High-profile projects in the 1940’s and 50’s (including the Trusteeship Council Chamber, the Danish ambassador’s residence in Washington, DC and all of SAS Scandinavian Airlines’ air terminals in Europe and Asia) brought him international recognition, and he organized many of the exhibitions — including the “Good Design” exhibit in Chicago in 1951, and another at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in 1960.”                                                                                                           In Copenhagen, A Renaissance for Finn Juhl By Stephen Brookes • Modernism Magazine •

Salto & Sigsgaard. The restoration of the Finn Juhl–designed United Nations Trusteeship Council Chamber, New York. Photography by Hans Ole Madsen.

Salto & Sigsgaard. The restoration of the Finn Juhl–designed United Nations Trusteeship Council Chamber, New York. Photography by Hans Ole Madsen. Image via Salto and Sigsgaard pinterest

“One cannot create happiness with beautiful objects, but one can spoil quite a lot of happiness with bad ones” – Finn Juhl

 

Finn Juhl: Pelikan Take Sunset LA

Finn Juhl: Pelikan Take Sunset LA

 Pelikan is a wonderful example of Finn Juhl’s design. Inspired by the modern “free art” of the time, its organic shape and fluid lines are so inviting. . Via takesunset.com

Pelikan is a wonderful example of Finn Juhl’s design. Inspired by the modern “free art” of the time, its organic shape and fluid lines are so inviting. Via takesunset.com

 

Unlike many of his contemporaries in Scandinavia and the rest of Europe, Juhl was as interested in form as in function.  “A chair is not just a product of decorative art in a space,” he said. “It is a form and a space in itself.”  His  attention to form led him to design chairs where the seat is separate from the frame (images 5, 6 & 8) and sofas constructed out of floating shapes.http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/

 

Item Description Bwana Chair, designed by Finn Juhl, Denmark 1962. prod. by France and Son, Denmark 1962. teak. -via deconet.com

Item Description Bwana Chair, designed by Finn Juhl, Denmark 1962.
prod. by France and Son, Denmark 1962. teak. -via deconet.com

Juhl gave a soft edge to the lines of wooden modernist chairs, favoring organic shapes which often took the wood to the limits of what was possible. He generally used teak and other dark woods, unlike many of the other proponents of the Danish Modern movement who often used oak in their designs.

He was influenced by the abstract sculptor Jean Arp, an influence which is seen already in his early Pelican chair but it remained a motif throughout his career. Also influenced by tribal art, Juhl exhibited the Chieftain chair with photos of weapons from anthropological studies.   Wikipedia

Bradley: “Denmark is a Disneyland for adults, for design geeks.”

Modernist Architecture 

Blog post: Modernism through the eyes of an architectural photographer.  Darren Bradley and Denise Bradley visit Finn Juhl’s House, “a person’s house says so much about their character”.

 

Finn Juhl Architecture, Estate photo courtesy Finn Juhl Estate

Finn Juhl Architecture, Estate photo courtesy Finn Juhl Estate

 

Finn Juhl Homeoffice via Dansk Mobel Kunst http://www.dmk.dk/blog/page/2/

Finn Juhl Homeoffice via Dansk Mobel Kunst

 

Architects and Their Chairs “I”

Posted by Lynne van den Berg On May 14th

                         “I” is for Isozaki

Image via Architects Architecture Archtectuul

Image via Architects Architecture Archtectuul

Arata Isozaki was born in Oita City, Japan, in 1931. He studied with Kenzo Tange, one of Japan’s leading modern architects, at the University of Tokyo from 1950 to 1954.  He worked for Tange for a number of years and then went out on his own, but continued to collaborate with KT into the 70’s. This attitude is in keeping with native Japanese practices that stress collaboration and cooperation, rather than competition, among professionals. Encyclopedia.com

Architecture writer Martin Filler called Isozaki and his wife, sculptor Aiko Miyawaki, “true cultural citizens of the world.” Raised in a home where his businessman father wrote haiku poetry, he later was attracted toward the avant-garde and readily called his tastes “radical” in everything from music to literature. LA Times:Tastemakers

 

              Furniture & Architecture

 One can see how Japanese design is as much about emptiness as it is about structure – a perspective that comes naturally to the country that gave Zen Buddhism to the world. Japan-ness In Architecture  Arata Isozaki

“What is the essence of Japanese design? Perhaps it is best exemplified in the clean lines of the Marilyn Chair , designed by architect Arata Isozaki in 1972. Isozaki combined the curves of Marilyn with the narrow, vertical lines found in the Mackintosh high-back chair.”  Book: Japanese Design:A Survey Since 1950  Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1868-1928), was in turn influenced by Japanese design. In its curved side view, the chair makes reference to the body shape of Marilyn Monroe. The chair is constructed of bent laminated wood and a solid beech frame. It retains its original leather-covered upholsteredseat.  Denver Museum of Art

 

Marilyn Monroe Chairs image via www.invaluable.com

Marilyn Monroe Chairs image via www.invaluable.com

 

 

image via: Arata Isozaki at 1stdibs Oval Dining Table and Marilyn Monroe Chairs

image via: Arata Isozaki at 1stdibs
Oval Dining Table and Marilyn Monroe Chairs

 

 

A Pair of Arata Isozaki Monroe Chairs made of ebonized beech image via: https://www.aspireauctions.com/

A Pair of Arata Isozaki Monroe Chairs made of ebonized beech
image via https://www.aspireauctions.com/

 

 

 In 1963 he established Arata Isozaki & Associates, the base from which he continued to work ever since. From his 1960s work such as Oita Prefectural Library, to his 1990s work in locations as far afield as Barcelona, Orlando, Kraków, Nagi in Okayama Prefecture, Kyoto, Nara, La Coruña, Akiyoshidai in Yamaguchi Prefecture and Berlin, to his 21st century work in the Middle East, China, Central Asia, and elsewhere, Isozaki has created an architecture so personal in its ideas and spaces that it defies characterization in any single school of thought. At the same time he resists the temptation to apply a signature style to his jobs, preferring instead to create architectural solutions specific to the political, social and cultural contexts of the client and site in question.  YCAM Re-Mark

 

via Arch Daily Architects: Arata Isozaki Location: Barcelona, Spain Project Year: 2011 Photographs::© Filippo Poli

via Arch Daily
Architects: Arata Isozaki
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Project Year: 2011
Photographs:© Filippo Poli

 

Inflatable concert hall by Anish Kapoor and Arata Isozaki in Matsushima, Japan 52-Weeks-52-CIties-by-Iwan-Baan_Ark-Nova-Isozaki_dezeen_22 Baan is known for eschewing the traditional approach of shooting buildings in isolation. He says his aim with every shoot is to capture the life both within and surrounding the built environment.

Inflatable concert hall by Anish Kapoor and Arata Isozaki in Matsushima, Japan 52-Weeks-52-CIties-by-Iwan-Baan_Ark-Nova-Isozaki_dezeen_22  Baan is known for eschewing the traditional approach of shooting buildings in isolation. He says his aim with every shoot is to capture the life both within and surrounding the built environment.

 

GreatBuildings.com Image - Team Disney Building by ARATA ISOZAKI

GreatBuildings.com Image – Team Disney Building by ARATA ISOZAKI

 

Isozaki draws from a wide-ranging store of references. MOCA’s pyramid-shaped skylights do indeed reflect Egyptian pyramids, for instance, but they are also simple geometric forms. Influenced first by his teacher, the prominent Japanese architect Kenzo Tange, by Le Corbusier and, later, by Otto Wagner, the architect builds on rather than discards his traditional training.

 

Image via The Vintage Poster

Image via The Vintage Poster

 

As the first museum ever to be entirely dedicated to the human species, Domus shines as a source of pride for Galicia. Japanese architect Arata Isozaki designed the Domus complex, which contains a museum, restaurant and IMAX theater, to look like a ship sail. davidsbeenhere

Domus shines as a source of pride for Galicia. Japanese architect Arata Isozaki designed the Domus complex.

Domus shines as a source of pride for Galicia. Japanese architect Arata Isozaki designed the Domus complex

 

Arata Isozaki was instantly recognizable by his distinctive style of dress. He often wore traditional Japanese clothing, and he favored the color black. He appeared on the cover of the New York Times Magazine in 1986, dressed in a “dazzingly” fashionable Issey Miyake creation. By presenting himself as being sartorially distinct from the crowd, Isozaki provided a contemporary parallel to the flamboyant Frank Lloyd Wright, the famous American architect (and admirer of Japanese culture) who continued to affect Victorian dress long after it passed out of style. Encyclopedia.com

 

Bar Italia News Arata Isozaki

Bar Italia News Arata Isozaki

 

Irata Isozaki, Japanese architect, teacher and theorist. He will be remembered as the designer of such prestigious international projects as Barcelona’s Olympic Stadium, the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, the Tokyo University of Art and Design, the Team Disney Building in Orlando, FL…..and the list goes on.

I feel compelled to share this other aspect to his architectural aesthetic that came up often in my research and should be considered when you look at his body of work. Being Japanese brought both light and darkness to the architecture.

 There is thus always an undercurrent of morbid scepticism lying beneath the exuberance of his aesthetic form—a darkness of spirit that became overt from time to time. In his Electric Labyrinth (1968), designed for the Triennale in Milan, for example, the exhibition was haunted by an image of the devastated Hiroshima, combined with traditional Japanese ghosts and demons representing the revengeful spirits of the nuclear disaster. MOMA.org

 

Iraklis/Tumblr

Iraklis/Tumblr

 

 

We work hard to accurately credit all of our resources, both words and images. If we have made any errors or omissions please contact us and we will correct our information.

Architects and Their Chairs “G”

Posted by Lynne van den Berg On November 21st

                        “G” is for Gehry

 

Frank-Owen-Gehry

 

 Frank Owen Gehry was born in Toronto, Canada on February 28, 1929. He studied at the University of Southern California and Harvard University. Frank was creative at a young age, building imaginary homes and cities from items found in his grandfather’s hardware store. This interest in unconventional building materials would come to characterize Gehry’s architectural work.  information via, Ruarte Contract

 

      image via, http://ruartecontract.com/frank-gehry-architecture-decoration-materials/

image via  Ruarte Contract

 

Gehry creates unexpected, twisted forms that break conventions of building design. His work has been called radical, playful, organic, and sensual.

His selection of materials such as corrugated metal lends some of Gehry’s designs an unfinished or even crude aesthetic. This consistent approach has made Gehry one of the most distinctive and easily recognizable designers of the recent past. Critics of Gehry’s work have charged, however, that his designs are not thoughtful of contextual concerns and frequently do not make the best use of valuable urban space.

 

My first experience of his work in 2007...love at first sight...University of Iowa

My first experience of his work in 2007…love at first sight…University of Iowa

 

His style has been called Deconstructivist —a post-structuralist aesthetic that challenges accepted design paradigms of architecture while breaking with the modernist ideal of form following function.Frank Gehry looks for an architecture more and more free, with virtuous lines and complex forms, in which the light and its reflection is a principal matter. Furthermore, he is unique in the election of materials, each one more and more unusual giving his works an artistic quality unequaled.   information via, http://www.biography.com/people/frank-gehry-

 

Preliminary sketches for the Panama Puente de Vida Museo | © Frank O. Gehry https://www.foga.com/

Preliminary sketches for the Panama Puente de Vida Museo | © Frank O. Gehry

https://www.foga.com/


“a sculptor that studied architecture”

EMP’s futuristic Frank O. Gehry designed building is constructed of over 21,000 aluminum and stainless steel shingles and 280 steel ribs. If its 400 tons of structural steel were stretched into the lightest banjo string it would extend one-fourth of the way to Venus. Photo courtesy of EMP staff. A world-renowned architect, Frank O. Gehry has been the recipient of numerous awards including the Pritzker Architecture Prize (1989), the Dorothy and Lillian Gish Award (1994), the National Medal of Arts (1998), a Gold Medal from the American Institute of Architects (1999), and the Lifetime Achievement Award from Americans for the Arts (2000). Photo courtesy of EMP staff.

EMP’s futuristic Frank O. Gehry designed building is constructed of over 21,000 aluminum and stainless steel shingles and 280 steel ribs. If its 400 tons of structural steel were stretched into the lightest banjo string it would extend one-fourth of the way to Venus.

A world-renowned architect, Frank O. Gehry has been the recipient of numerous awards including the Pritzker Architecture Prize (1989), the Dorothy and Lillian Gish Award (1994), the National Medal of Arts (1998), a Gold Medal from the American Institute of Architects (1999), and the Lifetime Achievement Award from Americans for the Arts (2000).

Photo courtesy of EMP staff.Situated at the base of the world-renowned Space Needle

 

In His Own Words:

“I approach each building as a sculptural object, a spatial container, a space with light and air, a response to context and appropriateness of feeling and spirit. To this container, this sculpture, the user brings his baggage, his program, and interacts with it to accommodate his needs. If he can’t do that, I’ve failed.”— from the 1980 edition of “Contemporary Architects”

“Building a building is like berthing the Queen Mary in a small slip at a marina. There are lots of wheels and turbines and thousands of people involved, and the architect is the guy at the helm who has to visualize everything going on and organize it all in his head. Architecture is anticipating, working with and understanding all of the craftsmen, what they can do and what they can’t do, and making it all come together. I think of the final product as a dream image, and it’s always elusive. You can have a sense of what the building should look like and you can try to capture it. But you never quite do.”— Conversations With Frank Gehry by Barbara Isenberg, p. 62

information via, http://architecture.about.com/od/greatarchitects/p/gehry.htm

 

EMP Museum – Seattle At the base of the Space Needle, Gehry framed the EMP Museum to look as if its steel-and-aluminum skin is flapping in the wake of Seattle’s famous monorail.
EMP Museum – Seattle
At the base of the Space Needle, Gehry framed the EMP Museum to look as if its steel-and-aluminum skin is flapping in the wake of Seattle’s famous monorail. The building’s remarkable architectural form and sophisticated use of colors and textures can be traced to a melted Stratocaster guitar that served as inspiration to the architect Frank O. Gehry. Architectural Digest

 

 

 Idiosyncratic as it is said to be, Gehry’s philosophy toward designing is simple. He stays original and attempts to balance out the current trends of plain modernism with his own spice. Gehry mirrors the crazy, chaotic, insane aspects of life in his buildings. Like Gehry said himself, “What is architecture? It’s a three-dimensional object, right? So why can’t it be anything?”   www.SilverCreek

 

                                                                                    Furniture

 

EMECO TUYOMYO BENCH DESIGN BY FRANK GEHRY 2009 Emeco with Gehry: A Collaboration in Support of Hereditary Disease Research “Tuyomyo” Yours and Mine: One-of-a-Kind

EMECO TUYOMYO BENCH DESIGN BY FRANK GEHRY 2009
Emeco with Gehry: A Collaboration in Support of Hereditary Disease Research
“Tuyomyo” Yours and Mine: One-of-a-Kind

 

furniture-by-frank-gehry-architect-decor/
furniture-by-frank-gehry-architect-decor/

Gehry had success in the 1970s with his line of Easy Edges chairs made from bent laminated cardboard. By 1991, Gehry was using bent laminated maple to produce the Power Play Armchair. These designs are part of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) collection in NYC.

 

Frank O. Gehry, Easy Edges lounge chair, 1972 www.sfmoma.org

Frank O. Gehry, Easy Edges lounge chair, 1972

www.sfmoma.org

One of the more spectacular 70s chairs is Frank O. Gehry's cardboard chair, Wiggle Side Chair, which is made out of 60 layers of closely compressed ... www.archithings.com

One of the more spectacular 70s chairs is Frank O. Gehry’s cardboard chair, Wiggle Side Chair, which is made out of 60 layers of closely compressed …

www.archithings.com

Frank Gehry Face Off café table and 4 Cross Check arm chairs ...
Frank Gehry Face Off café table and 4 Cross Check arm chairs …

  • The most prominent influence of Gehry’s childhood was the love of fish. The elements he loved in the fish can be constantly seen in all of his buildings. It got him into thinking freely.

“The fish is a perfect form.” –Frank O. Gehry, 1986

 

The shape of the fish is what got me thinking freely. Via silvercreek http://bit.ly/11HXlQU
The shape of the fish is what got me thinking freely. Via silvercreek

 

We always aim to give credit for all images and information, in the event we fail to do that please notify us and we will correct the error. LMV

 

Architects and Their Chairs “A”

Posted by Lynne van den Berg On April 14th

          A is for Aulenti

Gae Aulenti 1927-1912

Gae Aulenti 1927-1912

We begin this retrospective with Gae Aulenti (December 4, 1927 – October 31, 2012) an Italian architect, lighting and interior designer, and industrial designer. She was well known for several large-scale museum projects, including Musée d’Orsay in Paris (1980–86), the Contemporary Art Gallery at the Centre Pompidou in Paris, Palazzo Grassi in Venice (1985–86), and the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco (2000–2003). Information via Wikipedia

Quote: “advice to whoever asks me how to make a home is to not have anything, just a few shelves for books, some pillows to sit on. And then, to take a stand against the ephemeral, against passing trends…and to return to lasting values.”

 

                        Sparsal Rocking Chair 1962

Gae Aulenti Italian Architect , Industrial Designer Sparsul Rocking Chair 1962

Gae Aulenti Italian Architect , Industrial Designer
Sparsul Rocking Chair 1962

 

 

 

Gae Aulenti Italian Architect and Industrial Designer Tostapane

Gae Aulenti Italian Architect and Industrial Designer
Tostapane

 

 

tavolo con ruote

tavolo con ruote

 

 

Tour Table by Gae Aulenti Available through: www.mintshop.co.uk Pic: www.moggit.com


Tour Table by Gae Aulenti
Available through: www.mintshop.co.uk
Pic: www.moggit.com

 

Architect and Industrial Designer at Home Gae Aulenti

Architect and Industrial Designer at Home
Gae Aulenti

 

 

Architect and Industrial Designer at Home Gae Aulenti

Architect and Industrial Designer at Home
Gae Aulenti

 

Ms. Aulenti was one of the few Italian women to rise to prominence in architecture and design in the postwar years. Her work includes villas for the rich, showrooms for Fiat, shops for Olivetti, pens and watches for Louis Vuitton, and a coffee table on wheels that is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

“I’ve always worked for myself, and it’s been quite an education. Women in architecture must not think of themselves as a minority, because the minute you do, you become paralyzed. It is most important to never create the problem.” Gae Aulenti

 

An Architect Reflects From Across The Pond

Posted by Meto Mihaylov On March 17th

I am pleased to introduce my guest this month, Meto Mihaylov, Architect · Basel, Switzerland ·  Meto spent Christmas with our family in 2006 when he attended Westtown School in Pennsylvania, with my son Joshua.  Lo and behold, we recently connected again (thank you Facebook), and my charming Bulgarian friend is now an architect!  So naturally I queried….

 

Q:  What led you to become an architect, your favorite architect/s?  Did your time living in the U.S. influence you in any way?

 

A:  My name is Meto. I come from Bulgaria. I have lived and studied in high school for one year in the USA. After this I studied architecture at a University in Denmark and now work as an architect in Switzerland.

In my culture it is normal to pick a profession at a very early age. I was a little kid when I saw the ancient city of Plovdiv for the first time. I fell in love with its old buildings and with its atmosphere, and decided that I wanted to become an architect.

 

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NYC made the biggest impression on me when I was in the USA and solidified my intention to study and do buildings. Please visit this city at least once in your life if you can.

At University I learned more and more about the contemporary work of the 20th and 21st century. It is scary to see how Professors in Europe teach architectural theory no different than religion is taught in a religion class. “Le Corbusier is God, and if you question any of what I tell you- you are dumb”. I like it when people question things and point out defects in buildings. This is a constructive way to work and achieve better results. Architects must not be the ones who judge architecture because they are too immersed into it and lose the objectivity. We do not build for architects- we build for people, for children, for shopping, for doctors etc. I like to ask friends and family to give me their opinion on my buildings during the design process, because their view tends to be much more objective, human, and overall better than when I ask my colleagues.

My list of professional influences reflects my worldview. There are certain architects whom I like, but I always try to be fair and see the pros and cons in their work. I do not believe in unconditionally worshiping an architect like I see many architect friends do. The character of a person, in architecture, always shows up in the work, so I like to study architects also as individuals, in order to understand their thought process better.

I like the organic form of Oscar Niemeyer but even more I like his overall organic approach to life. The houses of John Lautner have a similar effect- a completely revised space which makes life better. He was also very good at sustainable budget houses, not only the houses for the rich, like the one in the movie “The big Lebowski”. When it comes to the ever-present-for-good-or-bad field of Modernism, I find Paul Rudolph to be the one who really cracked the code of the modern form and proportion, overcoming the haunting sterility of modernist structures.

 

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Lautner

 

I recently had the good fortune to hear SeARCH’s Bjarne Mastenbroek present his way of seeing things and I found a lot of common ground with him. He works in the real world, where he has a budget amidst a financial crisis, and has to build residential buildings and schools in Holland two times cheaper and three times better than twenty years ago. When you manage to do something like this, you are truly creative and innovative, and a real architect, unlike someone like Zaha Hadid, who gives someone sketches of an unknown spaceship, budget- unknown, energy requirements for building it and after- unknown, building time- unknown, “oh, and by the way- I designed it but you have to build it yourself, because I can’t”. So, back to Mastenbroek, and I will leave you with him. He will build the first passive hotel in the ski resort of St. Moritz in the Swiss Alps, where, until now, only the richest of the rich built the most unsustainable, most expensive villas possible (Norman Foster built his own house there). Mastenbroek made a research and he will heat the hotel with 60 cows, which in winter will produce more heat just in staying inside glass rooms, than a radiator or floor heating. No cars allowed, you will have to reach the place on a dog sled. The sloping roof will be a part of the ski slope. The Swiss government, based in the capital city of Bern, is going to discuss changing the law of the Canton (State) of Graubünden in 2014, so that the crazy Dutchman can do the cow hotel. Keep an eye out, you will see it happen soon.

 

SeArCH

 

Be careful with architects. I can tell you that this industry often makes people extremely selfish and gives them a mania for fame. They stop wanting to make the world a better place and start wanting only attention. Please do not trust that single persons create buildings just because the media find it much easier to give you a single name. Even Mastenbroek cannot complete a house alone. Buildings are done by dozens of people and it is real teamwork that brings about a great result in the form of a built structure. Thank you for reading this and look for the architecture that makes a true innovation.

 

Architect Meto Mihaylov Zentrum Paul Klee (by Renzo Piano) — in Bern, Switzerland. Paradigm Gallery's photo.

Architect Meto Mihaylov
Zentrum Paul Klee (by Renzo Piano) — in Bern, Switzerland.
Paradigm Gallery’s photo.

 

 

 

 

Vote: Architectural Curves or Right Angles

Posted by Lynne van den Berg On February 18th

 

National Congress of Brazil Oscar Niemeyer Architect via escuyer.tumblr.com

National Congress of Brazil Oscar Niemeyer Architect via escuyer.tumblr.comvia

 

Oscar Niemeyer was one of the most important architects of the 20th century and he did not like angles. “Right angles don’t attract me. Nor straight, hard and inflexible lines created by man,” he wrote in his 1998 memoir The Curves of Time. ” I am attracted to free-flowing, sensual curves. The curves that I find in the mountains of my country, in the sinuousness of its rivers, in the waves of the ocean, and on the body of the beloved woman. Curves make up the entire universe, the curved universe of Einstein.” via theaustrailian.com.au and gizmodo  *great Niemeyer architecture images

Was he ahead of his time, anticipating the direction of architecture?

 

EDIFICIO COPAN STAIRS by Oscar Niemeyer

EDIFICIO COPAN STAIRS by Oscar Niemeyer

 

People are far more likely to call a room beautiful when its design is round instead of linear. What about architecture, curves versus angles? The reason may be hard-wired into the brain. There have been recent studies by neuroscientists that conclude, “Curvature appears to affect our feelings, which in turn could drive our preference.” It’s also critical to point out that just because people have a natural neural affinity for curves doesn’t mean round design is always superior. If researchers asked people to rate architecture based on functionality instead of beauty, for instance, they might get different results.

CoDesign, in their post Why Our Brains Love Curvy Architecture shared: When the great architect Philip Johnson first visited the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, designed by Frank Gehry, he started to cry. “Architecture is not about words. It’s about tears,” Johnson reportedly said. Something about the museum’s majestic curves moved him at an emotional level.

 

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Guggenheim Museum Bilbao Architect Frank Gehry image via scarflove.tumblr.com

Guggenheim Museum Bilbao Architect Frank Gehry
image via scarflove.tumblr.com

 

Curves are making big statements on skylines around the world from the exquisite (in my humble opinion) Guggenheim Bilbao to London’s “Gherkin” ,  the “Marilyn Monroe” Towers in Ontario, many of Zaha Hadid’s Designs, Calatrava, and the Apple Campus 2 — its massive new headquarters designed by starchitect Norman Foster.

 

The Gherkin, Architect Norman Foster Curved buildings can point to nature, whereas angular buildings contrast with it Paul Silvia, assistant professor of psychology

The Gherkin, Architect Norman Foster
Curved buildings can point to nature, whereas angular buildings contrast with it
Paul Silvia, assistant professor of psychology

 

Monroe Curves, Absolute Towers by Ma Yansong of MAD Architects

Monroe Curves, Absolute Towers by Ma Yansong of MAD Architects

 

Calatrava via voguevoyager.tumblr.com

Calatrava via voguevoyager.tumblr.com

 

 

Curved or angular, do you have a preference?

Some of the rooms had a round style like this Courtesy Oshin Vartanian via CNN

Some of the rooms had a round style like this
Courtesy Oshin Vartanian via CNN

Others had a rectilinear form, like this Courtesy Oshin Vartanian via CNN

Others had a rectilinear form, like this
Courtesy Oshin Vartanian via CNN

 

In short, what we learned from our research and fastco.design’s work, “Time and again, when people are asked to choose between an object that’s linear and one that’s curved, they prefer the latter. That goes for watches with circular faces, letters rendered in a curly font, couches with smooth cushions–even dental floss with round packaging.

Architectural Lighting Nuances Nature

Posted by Lynne van den Berg On December 18th
ljusarkitektur-solvesborg-bridge-designboom01-1

The beautiful Solvesborg bridge in Sweden

The beautiful Solvesborg bridge in Sweden       

 Completed in 2013, the Solvesborg Bridge in Sweden is the longest pedestrian bridge in Europe. The bridge consists of a higher part made out of three characteristic vaults and a long wooden bridge for pedestrians. ljusarkitektur has developed a unique lighting scheme to enhance its landmark status. the use of color changing LED fixtures from lumenpulse graze the suspension cables of what is considered Europe’s longest bicycle and pedestrian viaduct.

The team of architectural lighting experts planned the lighting “with respect for the birdlife and is inspired by the migration of the birds during the whole year. In this way the character of the bridge changes over the year and the night. In addition to this there are a number of scenarios to be used for different events in the city.” http://www.ljusarkitektur.com/en/portfolio/solvesborg-bridge/

“The overall design was achieved without impacting on the local wildlife – to limit glare, the firm integrated deep, custom glare shields, which also hide the light sources. influenced by the surrounding fauna and flora, ljusarkitektur pushed the fixtures’ flexibility and controlability to program different color sequences throughout the year. managing to be both dynamic and understated, the glowing, reflective installation has turned the bridge into an attraction in its own right.” http://bit.ly/1hlrDLJ

 

I close with the words of Louis Kahn who was an architect known for his philosophy of incorporating natural light in his architecture. Indeed this project is LED lighting but the use of light takes it to another level and enhances the architectural grace of the structure and it’s setting.

“I sense a Threshold: Light to Silence, Silence to Light – an ambiance of inspiration, in which the desire to be, to express, crosses with the possible … Light to Silence, Silence to Light crosses in the sanctuary of art.”

Those who cross this bridge may not say these exact words but I am certain they experience “the sanctuary of art” this bridge gifts to the world.

 

Solvesborg bridge in Sweden

Solvesborg bridge in Sweden

 

 

Due to the length of the bridge, at intervals along the way parts of the nature have been accentuated with light, for example trees and reeds are lit.

Due to the length of the bridge, at intervals along the way parts of the nature have been accentuated with light, for example trees and reeds are lit.

 

 

 

Solvesborg bridge in Sweden

Solvesborg bridge in Sweden

Imperfection: A Look At Wabi Sabi

Posted by Lynne van den Berg On November 1st

 

blaxsand.com

blaxsand.com

 

  “Instinctively I was drawn to the beauty of things coarse and unrefined; things rich in raw texture and rough tactility. Often these things are reactive to the effects of weathering and human treatment.

And lastly, I was attracted to the beauty of things simple, but not ostentatiously austere. Things clean and unencumbered, but not sterilized. Materiality, pared down to essence, with the poetry intact.”  Leonard Koren   http://bit.ly/1dtfdzh

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thursday’s child: wabi sabi

wabi sabi is flea market finds, not michigan ave purchases. it celebrates cracks and crevices and all the other marks that time, weather, and loving use leave behind. it reminds us that we are all transient beings, that our bodies as well as the material world around us are fleeting. through wabi-sabi, we learn to embrace wrinkles and rust, grey hairs and frayed edges and the march of time they represent. it’s a fragmentary glimpse of the part, not the whole, the journey not the destination.

http://bit.ly/1bu20Z0    The Space Between Ms. and Mrs.  A Blog Post

 

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Wabi

Wabi means things that are fresh and simple. It denotes simplicity and quietude, and also incorporates rustic beauty. It includes both that which is made by nature, and that which is made by man. It also can mean an accidental or happenstance element (or perhaps even a small flaw) which gives elegance and uniqueness to the whole, such as the pattern made by a flowing glaze on a ceramic object.

Sabi

Sabi means things whose beauty stems from age. It refers to the patina of age, and the concept that changes due to use may make an object more beautiful and valuable. This also incorporates an appreciation of the cycles of life, as well as careful, artful mending of damage.

– “The Classic Tradition In Japanese Architecture: Modern Versions Of The Sukiya Style”, Teiji Itoh, Yukio Futagawa

Wabi-sabi is a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. It is a beauty of things modest and humble. It is a beauty of things unconventional. … The closest English word to wabi-sabi is probably “rustic”. … Things wabi-sabi are unstudied and inevitable looking. .. unpretentious. .. Their craftsmanship may be impossible to discern. “

onlybutaglimpsetumblr.com

onlybutaglimpsetumblr.com

 

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