“E” is for Eiermann
- Egon Eiermann 1948
Egon Eiermann (September 29, 1904 – July 20, 1970) was one of Germany’s most prominent architects in the second half of the 20th century.
A functionalist, his major works include: the textile mill at Blumberg (1951); the West German pavilion at the Brussels World Exhibition (with Sep Ruf, 1958); the West German embassy in Washington, D.C. (1958–1964); a building for the German Parliament (Bundestag) in Bonn (1965–1969); the IBM-Germany Headquarters in Stuttgart (1967–1972); and, the Olivetti building in Frankfurt (1968–1972). By far his most famous work is the new church on the site of the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church in Berlin (1959–1963). Wikipedia
His wide variety of buildings have been admired for their elegant proportions, precise detail, and structural clarity. Following are a few examples of his architectural point of view.
Deutscher Pavillon, Egon Eiermann, 1958
Image via THE-ARQ-M tumblr
A staircase detail from an apartment building on Bartningallee 2–4, Wohnhaus, Berlin. Designed by von Egon Eiermann in 1961/1962. / Behance
Among the obligatory stops in a visit to Berlin is the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church. Considered a symbol and link between the wartime destruction and the rebirth of the city, it is visited by millions of tourists, even though few remember the name of its architect, Egon Eiermann (1904-70). He was one of the leaders of German modernism who is being rediscovered and celebrated by the Bauhaus.
image via http://egoneiermann.tumblr.com/
The Legacy of Chairs
Egon Eiermann also designed furniture and interiors for some of his buildings.
Eiermann’s most successful furniture design was the “E 10” basket chair (1954), whose prototype was designed back in 1948 for “Wie wohnen”, an exhibition in Karlsruhe. Equally popular was the “SE 18” folding chair Egon Eiermann designed for Wilde & Spieth in Esslingen.
Egon Eiermann is next to Eileen Gray, Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier, Arne Jacobsen, Marcel Breuer one of the most famous Bauhaus architects and designers of the Bauhaus era.
1949 Egon Eierman Chair Model SE 42
obiblanche: Davore`s Egon Eiermann collection.
My flatmate Davor thought about to buy 2 nice vintage Eiermann chairs for our kitchen, now he has 30 red/orange and 25 black ones.
Egon Eiermann folding chairs via http://tootasinfoot.blogspot.com/2012/01/egon-eiermann.html
Folding Chair by Egon Eiermann at 1stdibs
I hope you enjoyed your brief introduction to the work of Egon Eiermann, please leave a comment if you are so inclined. If I have neglected to give accurate credit for any image or quote, please let me know and I will rectify the omission.
B is For Breuer
Marcel Breuer image via The New England Journal of Aesthetic Research
Marcel Lajos Breuer was born May 21,1902 in Hungary. He attended university at the Bauhaus School and later was a teacher in the carpentry department. When he came to the United States he was a professor at Harvard University (1937-46) in the School of Architecture.
First recognized for his invention of bicycle-handlebar-inspired tubular steel furniture, he designed his most famous creation, the Wassily Chair, so called after being admired by artist Wassily Kandinsky. It was the first chair to feature a bent steel frame. Breuer designed a whole range of tubular metal furniture including chairs, tables, stools and cupboards. Tubular steel has lots of qualities; it is affordable for the masses, hygienic and provides comfort without the need for springs to be introduced. Breuer considered all of his designs to be essential for modern living. Design_Technology.org
Democratic Affordable Furniture for the Masses
B 34 1928
B 34 1928 via http://www.loeffler.de.com/de/sammlung
Breuer’s flat aluminum band furniture (1932-1934)
Between these years Breuer experimented with flat aluminium in his furniture. It was not as strong as tubular steel but was considerably cheaper. The seats were targeted at the mass- market and were sold in Wohnbedarf in Switzerland. The concave bands at the back are structurally necessary but at the same time are aesthetically pleasing.
The seat above is named the Armchair, Model No. 301. It is made from painted aluminium with a painted and moulded laminated seat and back. Image: design_technology.org
As an architect, Breuer worked primarily in concrete. Breuer’s buildings were always distinguished by an attention to detail and a clarity of expression. Considered one of the last true functionalist architects, Breuer helped shift the bias of the Bauhaus from “Arts & Crafts” to “Arts & Technology”.
jvworks: St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville, Minnesota
[Marcel Breuer’s 1969 Armstrong (aka Pirelli) Building, pre-IKEA
Image and story http://archidose.blogspot.com/2008/08/ikea-1-breuer-12.html
1966 Whitney Museum of American Art. New York (with H. Smith)
The UNESCO building in Paris
Lecture Hall, New York University (1961, New York City )
Whitney Museum of American Art (1966, New York City ) ,
St. John’s Abbey Church (1953, Collegeville, MN ),
Ameritrust Tower (Cleveland, his only skyscraper)
We try to give credit for all information and images, but if there is an error please notify us and we will correct it.
A is for Aulenti
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 and Industrial Designer
tavolo con ruote
Tour Table by Gae Aulenti
Available through: www.mintshop.co.uk
Architect and Industrial Designer at Home
Architect and Industrial Designer at Home
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
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
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
A winter view of the house in 1971, showing the original insect screening of the porch, and the roller shades added by the owner after the curtains were damaged by flood waters. image via Wikimedia Commons
The Farnsworth House is a 1,500 sq.ft home designed and constructed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe between 1945-51. It is a one-room weekend retreat in a once-rural setting. The design is recognized as a masterpiece of the International Style of architecture and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 2006, after joining the National Register of Historic Places in 2004. The cost of project was $74,000 in 1951 ($648,000 in 2012 dollars). There was a cost overrun of $15,600 over the approved pre-construction budget of $58,400. This created havoc, lawsuits and counter lawsuits ensued until the courts ordered Dr Farnsworth to pay her bill.
At his inaugural lecture as director of the department in 1938, Mies stated:
“In its simplest form architecture is rooted in entirely functional considerations, but it can reach up through all degrees of value to the highest sphere of spiritual existence into the realm of pure art.”
This sentence summarized what had become Mies van der Rohe’s consistent approach to design: to begin with functional considerations of structure and materials, then to refine the detailing and expression of those materials until they transcended their technical origins to become a pure art of structure and space.
The dominance of a single, geometric form in a pastoral setting, with a complete exclusion of extraneous elements normally associated with habitation, reinforces the architect’s statement about the potential of a building to express “dwelling” in its simplest essence.
As Mies stated on his achievement, “If you view nature through the glass walls of the Farnsworth House, it gains a more profound significance than if viewed from the outside. That way more is said about nature—it becomes part of a larger whole.” Farnsworth House is the essence of simplicity in the purest form, displaying the ever-changing play of nature.
image via farnsworthhouse.org http://www.farnsworthhouse.org/history.htm
Information for this post was obtained from the following resources: Wikipedia http://www.farnsworthhouse.org/history.htm
Maman by Louise Bourgeois in front of The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain image via koikile on Flickr
Today’s museums are as much about the architecture as they are the collections within. The Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain was designed by Frank Gehry and was the starting point of a trend that still continues, often referred to as the Bilbao Effect. Simply put, Bilbao’s $200-million gamble bringing the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum to the Basque region of Spain paid off, culturally and economically. The Guggenheim Museum’s success in Bilbao did more than perhaps any other cultural institution to convince leaders and developers that where mega-projects go, economic transformation follows. (The Atlantic Cities.com.).
Jacqueline Pfeffer Merrill writes that over the past fifteen years, other cities sought to imitate Bilbao’s success by building new museums or museum additions designed by starchitects as part of civic renewal projects. Examples include the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art in Helsinki, Finland designed by Steven Holl, the Imperial War Museum North in Manchester, England and the Royal Ontario Museum addition in Toronto, both designed by Daniel Libeskind, the Denver Art Museum addition designed jointly by Daniel Libeskind and a local architecture firm, and the Connecticut Center for Science and Exploration in Hartford, Connecticut designed by César Pelli. The Ars Aevi Museum in Sarajevo designed by Renzo Piano is to be opened in Sarajevo in 2014. All of these projects are meant to use the drawing power of a spectacular building to attract tourists and other visitors to cities that would not otherwise be major destinations.s, by OMA. (Philanthropy Daily).
To learn more about the Guggenheim Bilbao: visit little aesthete wonderful images and information….
In addition to being an architect, Steven Holl is also a watercolorist who uses this medium to explore the possibilities of light. Above is a watercolor “sketch” of one of his studio’s latest projects, the Nanajing Museum. Read more: INHABITAT INTERVIEW: 7 Questions with Architect Steven Holl
I offer to you, just for fun, Wikipedia’s lists of: Starchitects, Former Starchitects, and Canonic Architects
Starchitects: feel free to offer any names you feel should appear on these lists
Royal Ontario Museum-Studio Daniel Libeskind
The Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision (beeld en geluid). Image by Iwan Baan
Museum of Biodiversity (or Biomuseo) Panama City, located in the alleged epicenter of biodiversity, Panama’s Biomuseo strives to tell compelling stories about nature’s wonders and thus stress the importance of their safeguarding. Architect Frank Gehry