Dictionary of Art and Artists



 

 


History of

Architecture and Sculpture

 
 

 

 
 

 
 

CONTENTS:

 
 

PART ONE
THE ANCIENT WORLD
PREHISTORIC ART
EGYPTIAN ART

ANCIENT NEAR EASTERN ART
AEGEAN ART
GREEK ART
ETRUSCAN ART
ROMAN ART
EARLY CHRISTIAN AND BYZANTINE ART

PART TWO
THE MIDDLE AGES
EARLY MEDIEVAL ART
ROMANESQUE ART
GOTHIC ART

PART THREE
THE RENAISSANCE THROUGH THE ROCOCO
LATE GOTHIC
THE EARLY RENAISSANCE IN ITALY
THE HIGH RENAISSANCE IN ITALY
MANNERISM AND OTHER TRENDS
THE RENAISSANCE IN THE NORTH
THE BAROQUE IN ITALY AND SPAIN
THE BAROQUE IN FLANDERS AND HOLLAND
THE BAROQUE
THE ROCOCO

PART FOUR
THE MODERN WORLD
NEOCLASSICISM AND ROMANTICISM
REALISM AND IMPRESSIONISM
POST-IMPRESSIONISM, SYMBOLISM, AND ART NOUVEAU

PART FIVE
TWENTIETH-CENTURY
TWENTIETH-CENTURY SCULPTURE
TWENTIETH-CENTURY ARCHITECTURE


INDEX
FIGURES

 

 
 

 
 

CHAPTER THREE
 

TWENTIETH-CENTURY ARCHITECTURE
 

Part I. ARCHITECTURE - 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10,
Part II. ARCHITECTURE - 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20,
Part III. ARCHITECTURE - 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29
 

 


ARCHITECTURE

 


THE BAUHAUS.


Schroder House was recognized immediately as one of the classic statements of modern architecture. The De Stijl architects represented the most advanced ideas in European architecture in the early
1920s. They had a decisive influence on so many architects abroad that the movement soon became international. The largest and most complete example of this International Style of the 1920s is the group of buildings created in 1925-26 by Walter Gropius for the Bauhaus in Dessau, the famous German art school of which he was the director.  The most dramatic is the shop block, which is a fully mature statement of the principles announced ten years earlier in Gropius' Fagus Shoe Factory (see fig. 1174). The structure is a four-story box with walls that are a continuous surface of glass (fig. 1182). The result is rather surprising: since the glass walls reflect as well as transmit light, their appearance depends on the interplay of these two effects. They respond, as it were, to any change of conditions without and within and thus introduce a strange quality of life into the structure. In this way, the facade serves a similar purpose to the mirrorlike finish of Brancusi's Bird in Space (fig. 1127).

More important than this individual structure, however, is the complex as a whole and what it stood for. Initially during its Weimar phase, the Bauhaus (which was the result of merging two separate schools) tried to fulfill the goals of the Arts and Crafts Movement, but the traditional attitudes toward the arts and crafts were too different for this romantic dream to succeed, and there developed a deep split between the Workshop Masters, who were responsible for practical crafts, and the Masters of Form, whom Gropius invited to teach theory, such as Kandinsky and Klee. The arrival of Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, a Hungarian follower of Tatlin's Constructivism, and then Josef Albers  gave the curriculum a far more rational basis. But it was the move to Dessau, which invited the school to transfer there when it was closed down for a while by Weimar, that proved decisive. The definitive character of the Bauhaus is reflected in Gropius' design. The plan consists of three major blocks (fig. 1183) for classrooms, shops, and studios, and a student center, the first two linked by a bridge of ferroconcrete containing offices. Its curriculum embraced all the visual arts, linked by the root concept of "structure" (Ban). It included, in addition to an art school, departments of industrial design under Marcel Breuer, graphic art under Herbert Bayer, and architecture, whose chief representative was Mies van der Rohe, the Bauhaus' last director.



1182. WALTER GROPIUS. Shop Block, the Bauhaus, Dessau, Germany. 1925-26
1183.
Plan of the Bauhaus
 

Gropius' buildings at Dessau incorporate elements of De Stijl and Constructivism, just as the school accommodated a range of temperaments and approaches. The Shop Block proclaims the Bauhaus' frankly practical approach, yet the complex as a whole promoted a remarkable community spirit, both of which were entirely different in character from what Gropius had inherited from Van de Velde at Weimar. The Bauhaus thus embodied Gropius' tolerant, yet unified vision. Not surprisingly, the school did not long outlast his departure in 1929 to pursue architecture full time. After his hand-picked successor, Hannes Meyer (1889-1954), was forced to resign because of his Marxist leanings, Mies van der Rohe tried vainly to revive the school's fortunes, but it was shut down by the Dessau parliament. By then, most of its leaders had left, and after a final attempt to reopen it as a private school in Berlin, the Bauhaus was closed by the Nazis in 1933.

 

Ironically, the developments on both sides of the Atlantic after World War II were equated with a loss of identity. On the one continent reigned the indifferent pragmatism of reconstruction, the specification of whose basic structures was a matter for the county councils, while on the other the native elite grew jealous of the status achieved by German immigrants such as Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Walter Gropius and Marcel Breuer. In the mood of post-war Europe, nostalgically looking back, modern buildings often appeared too sudden, too violent. Restorations and careful reconstructions of historical edifices using traditional, skilful craftsmanship were considered more valuable than the new buildings of the day. In the absence of clear city contours, contemporary architecture searched desperately for identity alongside the sentimental populistic motifs of arcades, oriels and gables. This "skinny", mediocre architecture of the fifties, precariously balanced between art and kitsch, always had an episodic character.

Unlike the manual orientation of the European construction industry, against which even the successful experiments of Jean Prouve, amongst others, could make no long-term headway, the major architectural firms in the USA had meanwhile developed a thoroughly industrial philosophy. Priority thereby lay not with apartments, but with strictly economical office design and the creation of company identity. The market demanded mainly two basic variations: the downtown high-rise and the spatious company headquarters in a landscape setting. One prototype for the latter are Mies van der Rohe's plans for the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, where he himself taught, followed by Saarinen's comparable complex for the General Motors Technical Center in Warren, Michigan. A rapid succession of four buildings inaugurated the development of a new type of skyscraper. In 1948 Pietro Belluschi built the administrative headquarters of the Equitable Savings and Loan Association in Portland, Oregon, in which the reinforced-concrete frame was hung with a skin of glass and aluminium in such a way that no part projected more than two centimetres. In New York in 1950, Wallace K. Harrison and Max Abramovitz completed the secretariat building for the United Nations, an office complex for 3,400 employees based on a genera! plan by Le Corbusien a slim building with two vast glass facades between windowless end walls of white marble. In New York in 1951, Gordon Bunshaft, working for the Skidmore, Owings & Merrill partnership, designed the Lever House for the Lever Brothers, a green glass box which skilfully combined a flat base with a slender tower. In the same year Mies van der Rohe built the famous Lake Shore Drive Apartments in Chicago for construction mogul Herbert S. Greenwald. Following his appointment in 1938 at the Armour - later Illinois - Institute of Technology in Chicago, Mies van der Rohe had the opportunity to plan the new university complex on the outskirts of the city. The concepts he had formulated in Germany he now applied to the situation in America, whereby he became stricter and made greater use of symmetries than in the few houses he had built before the War. Since fire regulations did not permit an exposed frame, Mies developed an aesthetic of steel, glass and brick which brought the compulsorily covered structure artistically back to the surface. He thereby paid particular attention to connecting elements and transitions.

Mies devoted himself to two basic forms. First the pavilion, which was to have a support-free interior and which in its ideal form was a floating volume of "air between two plates", as perfected in the Farnsworth House. Second the skyscraper, which he treated as a skeleton construction with identical floors behind a perfect facade of constructive elements which articulate a seemingly unbroken glass surface and rob it of the membrane-like character of usual curtain walls.

His most significant buildings are only inadequately described by phrases such as "almost nothing" or "less is more". These terms would suggest a link with the earlier Chicago School, whose products Mies must have seen almost daily. But the poorly-conceived details of those early high-rises, their cheap construction with changing effects and strange reconciliations of structure and appearance conflicted with his own beliefs. It was rather the perfect industrial buildings of his contemporary Albert Kahn, whose giant bomber factory he transformed into a concert hall in a collage of thin wall and ceiling panels, which formed the typical American starting-points for his work. These confirmed Mies in his denial of the individual and the artistic in architecture.

His houses are not, however, entirely lacking in classical references. Yet the two mutually offset towers of the Lake Shore Drive Apartments differ from typical high-rises of their day in their ground-plan side ratios of three to five. Although, as in the Skidmore, Owings & Merrill Lever Building, curtain walls conceal the structure, it is nevertheless the latter which determines the overall appearance of Mies' buildings. The structure is clearly evident even in the entrance hall. The actual facade starts seamlessly with the first floor,- fine I-beams at window-width intervals run its full height. Only one in every four of these regularly-spaced mullions conceals a broader load-bearing support. The two outer windows of each field are thus always somewhat narrower than their central neighbours. Parapet bands and transoms form a horizontal counterpoint to the emphatic verticals.

The Lake Shore Drive Apartments, with their intelligent construction solutions, were cheaper to build than comparable projects. Once the steel skeleton was erected, the prefabricated facade elements - each two storeys in height and one structural bay in width - were lifted by cranes into position and welded on the spot. The aluminium windows were then installed from the interior. Mies' concern that the perpendicular I-beams should be reassembled in exactly the same order that they left the rolling mills, to exclude even the smallest errors of measurement, reflected both his own perfectionism and the logic of his design. Mies was thwarted in only in one area: his client considered the originally open plans, recollecting the Barcelona Pavilion, too daring,- he felt the small rooms of the traditional apartment block would sell better.

What appeared sparingly economical in Chicago became, in the office tower built for Distillers Corporation Seagrams Limited in New York, a luxurious and expensive masterpiece. It was the daughter of the company president himself who halted existing plans for a new building and, following consultations with Philip Johnson, then Director of the Architecture Department of the Museum of Modern Art, put forward the name of Mies van der Rohe. The Seagram Building was markedly different from any other previous New York skyscraper. It stood back from busy Park Avenue, creating an open urban space before it. This "plaza" emerged as both homeless and windy, however, and only really served to introduce and reinforce the towering glass front with its strictly axial entrance. Unlike Chicago, the structural sections were laid not on but in the glass plane and were emphasized via shadow joints. Nor were they the products of serial manufacturing, but special fabrications in bronze. Mies was thus able to modify their profiles. He strengthened the visible, thin edge of the I-beams to give them more optical weight and moved the vertical joists closer
together. The office-storey windows run without transverse interruption from floor to ceiling. The facade thus acquires a decisive verticality and thereby gives the same basic design an entirely different appearance. This building type was developed further in the following years in particular by the architectural firms of C. F. Murphy and Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. Glass boxes - perfect and economical - now characterized modern city skylines all over the world. Serial production led, however, to the loss not only of originality but also of the love of detail which was most important for Mies, and without which, the standards of an architecture of "less is more" sadly declined to almost nothing indeed.

 

 


MIES VAN DER ROHE.

Equally prophetic was the German Pavilion designed by
Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1886—1969) for the International Exposition of 1929 in Barcelona (figs. 1184 and 1185), unfortunately dismantled soon alter the fair closed. The structure was a daringly low-slung affair elevated on a marble base, with enclosed courtyards at the front and rear, and even more radically simple in appearance than Wright's Robie House (see figs. 1169 and 1170), out of which it clearly developed. Its walls were constructed of different-colored marble slabs, arranged like so many "dominoes" in a grid system with such precision that not a single element could be moved without disturbing the balance. Here is the great spiritual counterpart to Mondrian among contemporary designers, possessed of the same "absolute pitch" in determining proportions and spatial relationships. Flooded with light from the great expanse of windows, the interior was wonderfully open and fluid, yet with a sparse cleanness that still seems irrepressibly modern.

The crowning achievement of American architecture in the postwar era was the modern skyscraper, defined largely by Mies van der Rohe. The Seagram Building in New York, designed with his disciple Philip Johnson (fig. 1196), carries the principles announced in Gropius' design for the Bauhaus to their ultimate conclusion fc» using the techniques developed by Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright, Mies van der Rohe's great predecessors in Chicago, to extend the structure to a vast height. Yet the building looks like nothing before it. Though not quite a pure box, it exemplifies Mies van der Rohe's famous dictum that "less is more." This alone does not explain the difference, however.

Mies van der Rohe
discovered the perfect means to articulate the skyscraper in the I-beam, its basic structural member, which rises continuously along nearly the entire height of the facade. (The actual skeleton of the structure remains completely hidden
from view.) The effect is as soaring as the responds inside a Gothic cathedral (compare fig. 454)and with good reason, for Mies van der Rohe believed that "structure is spiritual." He achieved it through the lithe proportions, which create a perfect balance between the play of horizontal and vertical forces. This harmony expresses the idealism, social as well as aesthetic, that underlies High Modernism in architecture.



1184.
LUDWIG MIES VAN DER ROHE. German Pavilion. International Exposition, Barcelona. 1929




1185.
LUDWIG MIES VAN DER ROHE. Interior, German Pavilion, International Exposition, Barcelona. 1929




1196.
LUDWIG MIES VAN DER ROUE with PHILIP JOHNSON.
Seagram Building, New York.

1954—
58
 

 



Ludwig Mies van der Rohe

Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, original name Maria Ludwig Michael Mies (born March 27, 1886, Aachen, Ger.—died Aug. 17, 1969, Chicago, Ill., U.S.), German-born American architect whose rectilinear forms, crafted in elegant simplicity, epitomized the International Style of architecture.


Early training and influence
Ludwig Mies (he added his mother’s surname, van der Rohe, when he had established himself as an architect) was the son of a master mason who owned a small stonecutter’s shop. Mies helped his father on various construction sites but never received any formal architectural training. At age 15 he was apprenticed to several Aachen architects for whom he sketched outlines of architectural ornaments, which the plasterers would then form into stucco building decorations. This task developed his skill for linear drawings, which he would use to produce some of the finest architectural renderings of his time.

In 1905, at the age of 19, Mies went to work for an architect in Berlin, but he soon left his job to become an apprentice with Bruno Paul, a leading furniture designer who worked in the Art Nouveau style of the period. Two years later he received his first commission, a traditional suburban house. Its perfect execution so impressed Peter Behrens, then Germany’s most progressive architect, that he offered the 21-year-old Mies a job in his office, where, at about the same time, Walter Gropius and Le Corbusier were also just starting out.

Behrens was a leading member of the Deutscher Werkbund, and through him Mies established ties with this association of artists and craftsmen, which advocated “a marriage between art and technology.” The Werkbund’s members envisioned a new design tradition that would give form and meaning to machine-made things, including machine-made buildings. This new and “functional” design for the industrial age would then give birth to a Gesamtkultur, that is, a new universal culture in a totally reformed man-made environment. These ideas motivated the “modern” movement in architecture that would soon culminate in the so-called International Style of modern architecture.

In Berlin Mies was influenced by Behrens’ emulation of the pure, bold and simple Neoclassic forms of the early 19th-century German architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel. It was Schinkel who became the decisive influence on Mies’s search for an architecture of Gesamtkultur. Throughout his life, the elegant clarity of Schinkel’s buildings seemed to Mies to embody most perfectly the form of the 20th-century urban environment. Another decisive influence was Hendrik Petrus Berlage, a pioneer of modern Dutch architecture, whom Mies met in 1911. Berlage’s work inspired Mies’s own love for brick, and the Dutch master’s philosophy inspired Mies’s credo of “architectural integrity” and “structural honesty.” With regard to structural honesty, Mies would eventually go further than anyone else to make the actual rather than apparent or dramatized supports of his buildings their dominant architectural features.


Work after World War I
During World War I Mies served as an enlisted man, building bridges and roads in the Balkans. When he returned to Berlin in 1918, the fall of the German monarchy and the birth of the democratic Weimar Republic helped inspire a prodigious burst of new creativity among modernist artists and architects. Architecture, painting, and sculpture, according to the manifesto of the Bauhaus—the avant-garde school of the arts just established in Weimar—were not only moving toward new forms of expression but were becoming internationalized in scope. Mies joined in several modernist architectural groups at this time and organized many exhibitions, but there was virtually nothing for him to build. His foremost building of this period—an Expressionist memorial to the murdered communist leaders Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg, dedicated in 1926—was demolished by the Nazis.

Mies’s most important work of these years remained on paper. In fact, these theoretical projects, rendered in a series of drawings and sketches that are now in the New York Museum of Modern Art, foreshadowed the entire range of his later work. The Friedrichstrasse Office Building (1919) was one of the first proposals for an all steel-and-glass building and established the Miesian principle of “skin and bones construction.” The “Glass Skyscraper” (1921) applied this idea to a glass skyscraper whose transparent facade reveals the building’s underlying steel structure. Both of these building designs were uncompromising in their utter simplicity. Other theoretical studies explored the potentials of concrete and brick construction, and of de Stijl form and Frank Lloyd Wright concepts. Few unbuilt buildings surpassed them in the variety of ideas and in their influence on the development of the architecture of the time.

This influence was apparent at the first postwar Werkbund exposition at Weissenhof near Stuttgart in 1927. The exhibition consisted of a housing demonstration project planned by Mies, who had by then become the Werkbund’s vice president. Europe’s 16 leading modernist architects, including Le Corbusier and Mies himself, designed various houses and apartment buildings, 33 units in all. Weissenhof demonstrated, above all, that the various architectural factions of the early postwar years had now merged into a single movement—the International Style was born. Though not a popular success, the exposition was a critical one, and Europe’s elite suddenly began to commission modern villas, such as Mies’s Tugendhat House (1930) at Brno, Czech.

Perhaps Mies’s most famous executed project of the interwar period in Europe was the German Pavilion (also known as the Barcelona Pavilion), which was commissioned by the German government for the 1929 International Exposition at Barcelona (demolished 1930; reconstructed 1986). It exhibited a sequence of marvelous spaces on a 175- by 56-foot (53.6- by 17-metre) travertine platform, partly under a thin roof, and partly outdoors, supported by chromed steel columns. The spaces were defined by walls of honey-coloured onyx, green Tinian marble, and frosted glass and contained nothing but a pool, in which stood a sculptural nude, and a few of the chairs Mies had designed for the pavilion. These cantilevered steel chairs, which are known as Barcelona chairs, became an instant classic of 20th-century furniture design.

In 1930 Mies was appointed director of the Bauhaus, which had moved from Weimar to Dessau in 1925. Between Nazi attacks from outside and left-wing student revolts from within, the school was in a state of perpetual turmoil. Though not cut out to be an administrator, Mies soon won respect as a stern but superb teacher. When the Nazis closed the school in 1933, Mies tried for a few months to continue it in Berlin. But modern design was as hopeless a cause in Hitler’s totalitarian state as was political freedom. Mies announced the end of the Bauhaus in Berlin late in 1933 before the Nazis could close it.


Mies in America
Four years later, in 1937—again after working mainly on projects that were never built—Mies moved to the United States. Soon after he arrived in the country, he gained an appointment as director of the School of Architecture at Chicago’s Armour Institute (later the Illinois Institute of Technology). Mies served as the school’s director for the next 20 years, and, by the time he retired in 1958, the school had become world-renowned for its disciplined teaching methods as well as for its campus, which Mies had designed in 1939–41. A cubic simplicity marked the campus buildings, which could easily be adapted to the diversified demands of the school. Exposed structural steel, large areas of glass reflecting the grounds of the campus, and a yellow-brown brick were the basic materials used.

The many commissions that his architectural office received after World War II gave Mies unique opportunities to realize large-scale projects, among them several high-rise buildings that are conceived as steel skeletons sheathed in glass curtain-wall facades. Among these major commissions are the Promontory Apartments in Chicago (1949), the Lake Shore Drive Apartments (1949–51) in that city, and the Seagram Building (1956–58) in New York City, a skyscraper office building with a glass, bronze, and marble exterior that Mies designed with Philip Johnson. These buildings exemplify Mies’s famous principle that “less is more” and demonstrate, despite their austere and forthright use of the most modern materials, his exceptional sense of proportion and his extreme concern for detail. The International Style, with Mies its acknowledged leading master, reached its zenith at this time. The United States in the 1950s had a faith in material and technical progress that seemed similar to the earlier German notion of Gesamtkultur. Miesian-influenced steel-and-glass office buildings appeared all over the United States and indeed all over the world.

Also during this period, Mies applied his modernist aesthetic to three more-intimate structures, the Farnsworth House in Plano, Ill. (completed 1951), the Robert McCormick House in Elmhurst, Ill. (completed 1952; now part of the Elmhurst Art Museum), and the Morris Greenwald House in Weston, Conn. (completed 1955). These were to be his only examples of domestic architecture in the United States.


Late work
In the 1960s Mies continued to create beautiful buildings, among them the Bacardi Building in Mexico City (1961); One Charles Center office building in Baltimore (1963); the Federal Center in Chicago (1964); the Public Library in Washington, D.C. (1967); and, most Miesian of all, the Gallery of the Twentieth Century (later called the New National Gallery) in Berlin, dedicated in 1968. A heavy man, badly plagued by arthritis, Mies continued to live alone in a spacious apartment in an old building near Lake Michigan in Chicago until his death in 1969. The IBM Building (1972), in Chicago, was completed after his death.

Although Mies attracted a great number of disciples, his indirect influence was perhaps of even greater importance. He is the only modern architect who formulated a genuinely contemporary and universally applicable architectural canon, and office buildings all over the world echo his concepts. His work eventually came under criticism in the 1970s for rigidity, coldness, and anonymity, but it was Mies’s declared choice to accept the nature of 20th-century industrial society and express it in his architecture.

Wolf Von Eckardt
 

Encyclopædia Britannica
 

 




Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. Villa for silk manufacturer Hermann Longe in Krefeld, Germany, 1928




Plan of the ground floor





Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. High-rise building on Friedrichstrahe,
Berlin, 1921





Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. Brick country house, 1924. Perspective view





Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. Brick country house, 1924. Plan





Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
German Pavilion at the International Exhibition in Barcelona, 1929






Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
German Pavilion at the International Exhibition. Plan




Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
German Pavilion at the International Exhibition. Overall view with pool





Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
Villa for Fritz and Grete Tugendhat in Brno, Czech Republic, 1928-1930

 


Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
Villa for Fritz and Grete Tugendhat in Brno, Czech Republic, 1928-1930. Plans
 



Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
Villa for Fritz and Grete Tugendhat in Brno, Czech Republic, 1928-1930. Street view




Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
Villa for Fritz and Grete Tugendhat in Brno, Czech Republic.
Living room with view into the winter garden





Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin, 1962-1967




Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
Crown Hall of the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, Illinois, 1950-1956





Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin, 1962-1967




Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
Hause for Edith Farnsworth, Illinois, 1946-1951




Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
Hause for Edith Farnsworth, Illinois, 1946-1951. Plan

 

 

Philip Johnson.
 

 


Philip C. Johnson

Philip C. Johnson, in full Philip Cortelyou Johnson (born July 8, 1906, Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.—died Jan. 25, 2005, New Canaan, Conn.), American architect and critic known both for his promotion of the International style and, later, for his role in defining postmodernist architecture.

Johnson majored in philosophy at Harvard University, graduating in 1930. In 1932 he was named director of the Department of Architecture of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York. With Henry-Russell Hitchcock he wrote The International Style: Architecture Since 1922 (1932), which provided a description of (and also a label for) post-World War I modern architecture. In 1940 Johnson returned to Harvard (B.Arch., 1943), where he studied architecture with Marcel Breuer. His real mentor, however, was Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, with whom he worked on the widely praised Seagram Building in New York City (1958). After World War II Johnson returned to MoMA as director of the architecture department from 1946 to 1954. His influential monograph Mies van der Rohe was published in 1947 (rev. ed., 1953).

Johnson’s reputation was enlarged by the design of his own residence, known as the Glass House, at New Canaan, Conn. (1949). The house, which is notable for its severely simple rectilinear structure and its use of large glass panels as walls, owed much to the precise, minimalist aesthetic of Mies but also alluded to the work of 18th- and 19th-century architects. (In addition to the Glass House, Johnson’s New Canaan estate featured a number of other structures, including an art gallery and a sculpture pavilion. He later donated the estate to the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and in 2007 it was opened to the public.) This balance between Miesian influence and historical allusion shifted in the 1950s. Beginning with the Temple Kneses Tifereth Israel in Port Chester, N.Y. (1956), Johnson made fuller use of curvilinear (particularly arch) forms and historical quotation, a pattern continued in the art gallery at Dumbarton Oaks in Washington, D.C. (1963), and the IDS Center, a multibuilding group in Minneapolis (1973).

Johnson’s style took a final turn with the New York City American Telephone and Telegraph headquarters (1984; now the Sony building). Designed with a top resembling a Chippendale cabinet, the building was considered by critics to be a landmark in the history of postmodern architecture. Johnson turned explicitly to the 18th century for his design of the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture at the University of Houston (1983–85); it was based on unexecuted plans published by the French architect Claude-Nicolas Ledoux. Johnson’s partner in these endeavours (1967–91) was the architect John Henry Burgee.

Johnson, who continued to design into the early 21st century, received a number of awards, including the American Institute of Architects Gold Medal (1978) and the first Pritzker Architecture Prize (1979).
 

Encyclopædia Britannica
 

 





Philip C. Johnson. "Glass House", Architect's House, New Canaan, Connecticut, 1949





Philip C. Johnson. "Glass House". Interior view




Philip C. Johnson/Burgee Architects. AT&T Building in New York, 1978-1982

 
 

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