Since December 2013, Docomomo US/New England has been advocating for appropriate treatment of Charles and Ray Eames' exhibit Mathematica at the Boston Museum of Science. Board Member Marie S.A. Sorensen AIA was made aware of plans to change the exhibit by Harvard Professor Jay Wickersham, whose Graduate School of Design student alerted him that Boston Museum of Science maps showed the exhibit closing in January 2014. Sorensen, Wickersham, and the Docomomo US/New England Board generated an initial list of national contacts with possible connections to the Museum, and once Wickersham contacted the Museum's press office he learned that the exhibit was being refurbished. Despite repeated attempts to learn more about and advise on the treatment of the exhibit, no successful contact was made.
Go tropical, go modern. Go now. Be lucky enough to travel with Eduardo and Monty, who are eager to share mid-century Cuban modernism and mojitos with you. – Modern Cuba traveler October 2015
In what could only be described as a once-in-a-lifetime trip, twenty-five architects, art conservators and architectural thrill seekers took part in the first Docomomo US educational travel tour to Havana, Cuba this past October. The tour, which was led by architect Belmont Freeman and architectural historian and Docomomo Cuba President Eduardo Luis Rodriguez, zigzagged the narrow cobblestone streets and expansive Havana suburbs taking in the innovative Cuban architecture, charming vintage cars and its vibrant culture.
Photo by David Glomb. Courtesy of Marmol Radziner.
In an attempt to deal with the enormous backlog of properties awaiting designation, the New York Landmarks Preservation Commission has created the "Backlog 95 Initiative." As part of that initiative, the Commission is hearing testimony and public comments on whether to designate or remove 95 calendared buildings, interiors and sites that were placed on the Commission's calendar prior to 2010, some which have been on the docket over 20 years. The Edgar J. Kaufmann Conference Center designed by Alvar and Elissa Aalto is one of the 95 properties being considered and support is needed as time is running out.
Last month we featured an update on potential threats to Chicago's late modern architecture. The following Op-Ed was submitted to the Chicago Tribune on October 16, 2015 by Bonnie McDonald, president and CEO of Landmarks Illinois and Gunny Harboe, preservation architect and president of Docomomo US/Chicago. The Op-Ed was never published.
By: Docomomo US/Oregon
It’s been six years since Portland’s Veterans Memorial Coliseum was saved from demolition and three years since plans to restore the building were stalled by city council. This past August, The Veterans Memorial Coliseum Option Study was released by the Mayor’s office which found that the building still provided a viable civic purpose and its restoration would contribute to economic growth and development. Despite these findings and the City Council’s rejection of Commissioner Steve Novick’s most recent proposal to redevelop the site for affordable housing, the building’s future still remains uncertain.
It is with great sadness that Docomomo US acknowledges the passing earlier this year of Ashok Bhavnani, architect and artist, and former partner of John M. Johansen. Co-designer of Island House and Rivercross on Roosevelt Island, Ashok graciously led a number of walking tours of Roosevelt Island for Docomomo US and other organizations over the years. As Docomomo US prepares for our upcoming symposia, Designing Better Affordable Housing taking place at the Museum of the City of New York on Tuesday, December 1st, we thought it would be appropriate to share this interview with Ashok revisiting his work on Roosevelt Island. The article was originally published in the September 13, 2014 issue of The Mainstreet Wire. Designing Better Affordable Housing is part of a series of programs related to the exhibition: Affordable New York: A Housing Legacy.
Thank you to everyone who participated in this year's membership drive. As promised, those who renewed or became a member before October 31st, were entered to receive one of five complimentary registrations to the 2016 National Symposium, set to take place in Detroit, Michigan May 5-8th.
Your membership support allows our community to organize, speak out and advocate for a significant site that is threatened with demolition. Thank you to everyone for participating and for renewing your support.
Welcome to another installment of our Flashback series. This month we are highlighting an article on post war mass housing titled "Ennobling the Oridinary: Postwar Mass Housing and the Challenge of Change" first published in the Docomomo Journal No. 39 - September 2008: Public Housing. Docomomo US is co-sponsoring and moderating the upcoming symposia Designing Better Affordable Housing taking place at the Museum of the City of New York on Tuesday, December 1st. The lecture is part of a series of programs related to the exhibition: Affordable New York: A Housing Legacy.
The Docomomo Journal is published twice a year and is a benefit to Docomomo US International members. To renew or join as an International member, click JOIN.