Docomomo US is pleased to welcome Modern-STL as an official Friend Organization. Led by local architectural enthusiasts and historic preservationists, Modern-STL was formed in 2010 as a membership-based non-profit seeking to protect and foster a deeper appreciation for the St. Louis region’s mid-century modern heritage. The organization fulfills this mission through events, tours, and lectures, and serves as St. Louis’ leading advocate for the preservation of local modern architecture.
As contemporary architects continue to deal with the delicacies of creatively intervening in existing buildings, designing alongside iconic modern buildings has specifically proven to be a challenge (as seen in the struggle of adapting Eero Saarinen’s TWA terminal or in the controversial addition to Corbusier’s “Ronchamp” chapel by Renzo Piano). The most recent announcement in October of The Bacardi headquarters in Miami, Florida, now under its new owners (the National YoungArts Foundation), has hired Frank Gehry to convert the corporate complex into an art campus.
As we reflect on the impact and legacies of John Johansen and Oscar Niemeyer, we thought we share some of the published work for the Docomomo International Journal and the Docomomo US E-News related to both architects.
A number of preservation advocates, including the North Texas (NTX) chapter of Docomomo US, are concerned about the future of the iconic Braniff Operations and Maintenance Building (OMB), located at Love Field in Dallas, Texas. Recent briefings to the Dallas City Council by City of Dallas Aviation Department have included recommendations for demolition of the OMB to allow construction of an automobile showroom dealership.
Docomomo International Specialist Committee on Education and Theory (ISC E+T) is one of the four committees of Docomomo International. It concentrates on the fundamental relationship between education, theoretical approaches, and the preservation of the modern movement.
The Headquarters of the Central Bank of Ireland on Dame Street in Dublin, designed by Stephenson & Gibney Associates, in 1980, may soon be vacated by its current occupants. What will become of this iconic building? Docomomo Ireland presents Central Bank in the 21st Century: an open design competition to develop ideas for what the building might become.
Its membership renewal time in the Docomomo US office. Because of your participation and membership, our organization continues to lead local and national discussions on the preservation of modern architecture and promote public awareness of the significance of modernist works. Modern architecture and design is featured more prominently as evidenced in the increased coverage in publications such as the New York Times and television shows like Mad Men and Pan Am. As a member-based organization, your Docomomo US membership is essential in promoting that public awareness and interest. As the end of the year approaches, please consider renewing your membership or become a first-time member.
Many do not know that Southern Illinois University, Carbondale (SIUC) was a hotbed of modernism in the 1960’s. Academics, artists, writers, poets, doers and thinkers found shelter and conversation in the complex landscape of southern Illinois where the hills and forest mediate the confluence of the farming plains and the Mississippi delta. The area is defined by its railroads and river boats, the New Madrid fault and where coal, timber, salt and the river trade developing our country long before the city of Chicago emerged. As a professor for 12 years at SIUC, R. Buckminster Fuller was one of those visionaries that made Carbondale his home base to connect with the world.
Last month, Michael Kimmelman, the current architectural critic for the New York Times, wrote an article regarding Chicago’s landmark battle over Bertrand Goldberg’s Prentice Women’s Hospital entitled, “A Vision to Avoid Demolition for a 70’s Pioneer.” The vision was Kimmelman’s own invention, preservation with a twist. Northwestern University wants to demolish Goldberg’s Prentice in order to build a new structure designed to accommodate scientific researchers. Kimmelman’s response: “So here is a suggestion: Build a research tower on top of Prentice.” (NYT, Oct 15, 2012) He solicited architect Jeanne Gang to draw a mockup of what such a structure might look like, the results being a 31-story tower precariously perching over Goldberg’s cloverleaf cantilevered core. Ironically the solution is one very much in vogue in the 1970s a a preservation option for important low-rise structures as evidenced by the hotel behind New York's Villard Houses.
With 33 events in 21 states, the sixth annual Tour Day 2012 saw a number of advances in the evolution of the event. In addition to Docomomo US chapters and partner organizations, we were thrilled to have eight new organizations participating in the event including: Historic New England, The Harry Ransom Center: University of Texas at Austin, Mid Century Modern RI, Schweikher House Preservation Trust, 2020 Omaha, First Presbyterian Church of Stamford, and the prospective Docomomo US chapter in Hawaii. A special thanks to all our partners for making this year a great success.
It opened in November 1963 as Gabe's Motor Inn --- but everybody who knows this building calls it Gabe's Tower.
With its groovy cylindrical form, its pastel-paneled façade, its 12th-floor restaurant and cocktail lounge, and its heated roof garden with swimming pool and retractable glass roof, this Owensboro, Ky., hotel — designed by local architect R. Ben Johnson (1921-2009) for restaurateur and local legend Gabe Fiorella, Sr. (1900-1977) — was the hippest place in town in the 1960s and ‘70s.
To celebrate the holiday season, Docomomo US has assembled its annual Holiday Book List. It is a compilation featuring all the books reviewed this year, plus a few bonus items that we recommend for the architecture and design enthusiasts on your gift list or for your own personal enjoyment! Best yet, every purchase originating from the Docomomo US website is a small gift to us, via our partnership with Amazon Associates.
Olivetti began as an Italian office machine manufacturer and grew into an international corporation, transforming into the leader of modern industrial design. Today, there is not only a renewed interest in reexamining the products they produced, but also a new movement, among contemporary industrial designers, in emulating Olivetti’s groundbreaking corporate philosophy that revolutionized the industrial design of the post-World War II era.
Oregon’s Modern Movement legacy spans the spectrum from the exquisite Memorial Coliseum, to the benign Drive-in Restaurants, and world renowned structures such as the Michael Graves Portland Building that push the edges of its modern architecture inventory. As we welcome our fourteenth chapter, Docomomo US/Oregon, chapter President Peter Meijer discusses the state's modern resources and its unique interpretation of modernism defined as the Northwest Regional Style.
The 2012 World Monuments Fund/Knoll Modernism Prizehas been awarded to the Architectural Consortium for Hizuchi Elementary School for its restoration of Hizuchi Elementary School in Hizuchi, Yawatahama City, Ehime Prefecture on Shikoku Island, Japan. Designed by the Japanese municipal architect Masatsune Matsumura, the school was nominated by a consortium of Japanese architects and professors including Docomomo Japan Chair Hiroyuki Suzuki.
The Association of Preservation Technology, Northeast Chapter invites the submission of presentations for the February 1, 2013 Symposium to be held at a venue in Stamford, Connecticut. There will be 1 Keynote Speaker, approximately 8 presentations, and 2 student presentations. The focus of the Symposium will be Historic Concrete Restoration.
Join the Modern League this Sunday, September 16th and bask in the last moments of NYC summer glory with a Pocket Park Tour. The event begins at 3:30 pm at the Greenacre Park (located on 51th Street between 2nd and 3rd Aves) and will conclude at the outdoor seating of Blockheads on 50th Street.
Let’s enjoy some crisp air and urban foliage this Sunday with The Modern League!
In early August, roughly thirty Americans joined our Docomomo colleagues inFinland for the 12th annual Docomomo International Conference entitled The Survival of Modern, From Coffee Cup to General Plan. The week-long event took place in Tapiola, the lush garden city neighborhood ofEspoo, and included a number of evening receptions in Helsinki and more in-depth Doco Tours throughout the area. With delightful temperatures in the low 70s and long days where the sun hovered at the horizon during the evenings, Docomomo US members were treated to stimulating discussions of the challenges facing architecture and conservation professionals across the globe.