Recent updates

Fates vary for Detroit’s Gruen shopping centers
by info, posted on Thursday, February 4, 2016
By Kim Silarski, Docomomo US/Michigan
 
As many of Detroit’s 1.8 million residents and their employers sprawled away from the city center in the early 1950s, the Motor City’s dominant downtown retailer, family-owned J.L. Hudson Company (known commonly as Hudson’s), did the same, albeit grudgingly. The region’s largest post-war development at the time, the modernist $30 million, two-million-square-foot Northland Center, opened in 1954. It was the brainchild of Austrian émigré architect Victor Gruen (b. 1903, d. 1980), the “father of the shopping mall” who convinced Hudson’s to follow its customers to the suburbs of Detroit, then the nation’s fifth largest city. Northland and its three sister “directional” malls initially thrived and expanded, but all suffered modifications, modernization, and additions that disguised their modernist bones over time.
REGISTER TODAY: 14th International Docomomo Conference 2016
by info, posted on Thursday, January 21, 2016

Every two years docomomo (the international committee for documentation and conservation of buildings, sites and neighbourhoods of the Modern Movement) organizes an international conference, bringing together docomomo members and friends from its 70 national Working Parties, as an opportunity for in-depth exploration of an important theme or aspect of the Modern Movement.

Picture: Alberto Pessoa, Pedro Cid, Ruy Athouguia, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon, Portugal, 1969. Gardens by Viana Barreto e Ribeiro Telles. © AFCG, Mário de Oliveira, 1969.

Update on Roche UN Plaza Ambassador Grill
by Liz Waytkus, posted on Thursday, January 21, 2016

It has been a busy few days since Docomomo US announced this past Monday the imminent demolition threats to Kevin Roche’s UN Plaza Ambassador Grill and Hotel Lobby. Considered by many to be Roche’s most important interiors and among the best modern public spaces in New York City, we have received numerous letters and emails of support to designate the spaces as an Interior Landmark.

Docomomo US Chapter Updates
by info, posted on Thursday, January 21, 2016

The year 2015 was a full of news worthy events surrounding modern architecture in the United States and abroad and 2016 is already looking to be just as exciting. In addition to the Docomomo US Enews Dispatch and Brief, many of our chapters and friend organizations send out their own newsletters and email updates on the issues affecting the significant modern architecture their neighborhoods and communities.

To stay informed and in the loop about what is taking place in the Docomomo US network, sign up for one or all of the newsletters below, and don't forget to follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Kevin Roche’s UN Plaza Ambassador Grill and Lobby Closed, Pending Demolition
by Liz Waytkus, posted on Thursday, January 21, 2016

Docomomo US has recently learned Kevin Roche’s distinctive and beloved late-modern interiors for the UN Plaza Ambassador Grill and Lounge, and Hotel Lobby are in the processing of being closed by its operators and now pending demolition. Located today in what is called ONE UN New York Hotel, the spaces are remarkably intact and highly acclaimed examples of New York City Late Modernism. In an effort to preserve these spaces, Docomomo US filed a Request for Evaluation (RFE) last week to the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) to designate the UN Plaza Ambassador Grill and Lounge, and Hotel Lobby a New York City Interior Landmark.

A New Year and a New Organization in Columbus, Indiana
by info, posted on Thursday, January 7, 2016

By Richard McCoy

I’m thrilled to start 2016 by announcing that we’ve created Landmark Columbus, a new organization in Columbus, Indiana, one whose mission is to care for and celebrate the world-renowned design heritage of this remarkable place. Landmark Columbus was created as a program of Heritage Fund -- The Community Foundation of Bartholomew County

Flashback: Learning to Love Brutalism
by info, posted on Thursday, January 7, 2016

Welcome to another installment of our Flashback series. This month we are highlighting a keynote lecture on Brutalism given by Anthony Vidler at the 12th Docomomom International Conference titled "Learning to Love Brutalism." The lecture was then included in the Docomomo Journal No.  47 - 2012/2: Global Design. The next Docomomo International Conference Adaptive Re-use. The Modern Movement Towards the Future will be taking place September 6-9, 2016 in Lisbon, Portugal. Visit the 2016 conference website for more information and to register.

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.

Restoration and Expansion of Eero Saarinens’s David S. Ingalls Rink at Yale University.
by info, posted on Thursday, January 21, 2016
Welcome to our third installment of in-depth articles featuring Modernism in America award winning projects. The Modernism in America Awards program, now accepting applications for a third year, seeks to acknowledge the substantial economic and cultural impact such projects had and continue to have on our local communities and to set a standard for how preserving modern architecture can be accomplished. The program seeks to bring attention to the many successful local, regional and national projects and thereby elevate an appreciation for the value of modern architecture to our cultural and architectural history.
 

Exterior of Ingalls Hockey Rink. Courtesy of Keven Roche John Dinkeloo and Associates, LLC.

Happy Holidays from Docomomo US
by info, posted on Thursday, December 17, 2015

Last Minute Holiday Gift List
by info, posted on Thursday, December 17, 2015
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
With the holidays just around the corner we've pulled together a few gift ideas that are now on our wish list and perfect for those last minute needs. Snuggle by the fire with Corbusier inspired socks, become a LEGO architect, or strap on a Denise Scott Brown duck apron to bake all those holiday treats. Don't forget, there is always the gift of a Docomomo US membership for the modern enthusiast in your life!
 
UPDATE: Save the Reactor
by info, posted on Thursday, December 17, 2015

By Docomomo US/WEWA

Since we last wrote in October about Docomomo US/WEWA's advocacy efforts to save the National Register-listed Nuclear Reactor Building at the University of Washington in Seattle, a lot has happened.

We launched our "Save the Reactor" advocacy campaign, collaborating with Historic Seattle and the Washington Trust for Historic Preservation, and created a great logo that appears on the website, buttons, and stickers.  To learn more about our collective efforts to save this important structure from the atomic era visit our NEW WEBSITE

Conserving Charles and Ray Eames' Mathematica
by info, posted on Thursday, December 17, 2015

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. 

Recap: 2015 Cuba Travel Tour
by info, posted on Wednesday, January 27, 2016

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.

Holiday Book List 2015
by info, posted on Friday, December 4, 2015
With the holiday season upon us, Docomomo US is pleased to present our annual list of notable books of 2015. This year's list features a number of must-have books, many written by Docomomo US members. Best yet, every purchase originating from the Docomomo US website is a small gift to us, via our partnership with Amazon Associates.
Restoration of the 1960 Santa Fe Federal Savings and Loan Building
by info, posted on Friday, December 11, 2015

Welcome to our second installment of in-depth articles featuring Modernism in America award winning projects. The Modernism in America Awards program, now accepting applications for a third year, seeks to acknowledge the substantial economic and cultural impact such projects had and continue to have on our local communities and to set a standard for how preserving modern architecture can be accomplished. The program seeks to bring attention to the many successful local, regional and national projects and thereby elevate an appreciation for the value of modern architecture to our cultural and architectural history.
 
Photo by David Glomb. Courtesy of Marmol Radziner.
Designate Aalto's Edgar J. Kaufmann Conference Center
by info, posted on Thursday, November 19, 2015

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. 

It's open season on Chicago modernism
by info, posted on Thursday, November 19, 2015

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.

The Case to Restore Portland’s Memorial Coliseum
by info, posted on Friday, November 20, 2015

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.

Architect Bhavnani Revisits Roosevelt Island
by info, posted on Thursday, November 19, 2015

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 WireDesigning Better Affordable Housing is part of a series of programs related to the exhibition: Affordable New York: A Housing Legacy.

2016 Membership Drive Winners
by info, posted on Thursday, November 5, 2015

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.

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