Recent updates

Minnesota's 2016 Mod Mixer
by info, posted on Thursday, June 30, 2016

Docomomo US MN’s annual spring Mod Mixer brings together Modernism enthusiasts from across the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro at a local Modern furniture store. The Mixer is just one of the many events Docomomo US MN hosts throughout the year to stimulate an interest in and educate the public about Modern design in Minnesota and to advocate for its preservation.

The Nuclear Reactor Building Saga Continues
by info, posted on Tuesday, August 16, 2016

By Eugenia Woo, Docomomo US/WEWA

The National Register-listed Nuclear Reactor Building isn't looking too good these days. The University of Washington (UW) erected a chain link fence around the site in May to prepare for demolition. On June 20, the University began deconstructing the building—WITHOUT a demolition permit. The UW submitted a demolition application in early May but evidently just could not wait to start destroying this significant structure.

An Affair to Remember
by info, posted on Thursday, June 30, 2016

By Docomomo US/New York - Tristate

On Wednesday, June 15th, the Docomomo US New York/Tri-State chapter celebrated the legacy of the iconic, Philip Johnson-designed Four Seasons Restaurant in Manhattan with their second biannual fundraising event, A Modern Affair. This event was designed to build on the success of the chapter’s first fundraiser, held in 2014 at the Alvar Aalto Rooms of the Edgar J. Kaufmann Conference Center, and to benefit the preservation education and advocacy efforts of the chapter. A Modern Affair also offered an opportunity to honor Phyllis Lambert, whose vision enabled the creation of the landmark interior space.

Preservation of Mid-Century Modern Building Materials Workshop
by info, posted on Thursday, July 21, 2016

By Docomomo US/Oregon

On May 21, 2016 Docomomo US/Oregon co-sponsored a joint workshop with the Association of Preservation Technology Northwest Chapter titled Preservation of Mid-Century Modern Building Materials. The full day event venue was held at the mid-century Pietro Belluschi designed Central Lutheran Church in Portland, Oregon.

Announcing the Winners of the 2016 Modernism in America Awards
by info, posted on Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Docomomo US is pleased to announce ten winners of the 2016 Modernism in America Awards program. These projects are exemplary of the efforts going on all over the country as the awareness of the importance to advocate, restore and celebrate the architecture, landscapes and typologies of postwar society in the United States continues to expand.

GE part of a national move away from big, suburban office parks
by info, posted on Tuesday, June 21, 2016
By Tom Condon
This article was originally published in the CT Mirror on May 26, 2016
 
When General Electric first suggested that it might pull its corporate headquarters out of Connecticut, in June of 2015, the company’s rationale appeared to be taxes and the business climate. But when it made the actual announcement in January that it would move to Boston, the message had changed.
A Short History of Pepsi’s Architecture
by info, posted on Thursday, June 16, 2016

By Jimmy Stamp

The corporate campus for PepsiCo, designed by Edward Durell Stone, has served as the company's world headquarters since their move to the suburbs in 1967. After an estimated $243 million dollar renovation beginning in 2013, and despite company-wide downsizing, the campus continues to exist as it was originally designed despite the national trend of corporations moving back to city-centers. 

The article below examines the events surrounding Pepsi's decision to move from its New York City headquarters and the influences that defined Stone's iconic design. A version of this article originally appeared on Smithsonian.com (September 2013)

Update: Bell Labs reopened and reimagined
by info, posted on Tuesday, June 21, 2016

By Gwendolyn Horton

After being abandoned in 2007, the preservation and use for Saarinen's Bell Labs in Holmdel, New Jersey has been a reoccuring topic of discussion over recent years. Purchased by Somerset Development in 2013, the vision of Ralph Zucker, President of Somerset Development to reinvent the space as a "New Urbanist Hub" has begun to be realized.

Mayor Hinds, 230 students and 50 companies participated in the recent job fair hosted by Bell Works 
General Motors Technical Center
by info, posted on Tuesday, June 21, 2016

During the Docomomo US National Symposium in Detroit this past week, attendees had the unique opportunity to visit the General Motors Technical Center in Warren, Michigan. Hosted by General Motors and the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office, the tour not only allowed us to see the incredible architecture and design of Saarinen's corporate masterpiece but also showed the care and stewardship as the complex continues to age.

The excerpt below takes a look back at the vision that both Eero Saarinen and Harley Earl had for General Motors and how it redefined the image and perception of what the corporate campus could and should be.

Paul Rudolph buildings in Buffalo and Boston under threat
by info, posted on Thursday, May 26, 2016

Docomomo US has been made aware of a looming threat to Paul Rudolph's Blue Cross/Blue Shield building (1960) in Boston. The city is considering five proposals from firms to develop a prominant site next to the Blue Cross/Blue Shield building. Four out of the five proposals pose no threat to the Rudolph designed building and one proposal is unclear of its effects on the building. The proposal from developer Trans National plans to demolish the building during the second phase of construction. Candidates will be interviewed in the beginning of June. Docomomo US and Docomomo US/New England are monitoring the situation as it unfolds.

 

Well attended Docomomo US/Chicago lecture on Cuban Modernism at IIT and first Chicago chapter meeting for 2016
by info, posted on Thursday, May 26, 2016

By Serge Ambrose, Chair, Docomomo US/Chicago

The Docomomo US/Chicago chapter is being reenergized and kicked off the spring season with a chapter meeting and lecture on the conservation of Mid-Century Modernism in Cuba. 

Future use of Breuer Library is unclear
by info, posted on Thursday, May 26, 2016

By Docomomo US/Georgia

For several years members of the Atlanta/Fulton County Library Authority, the agency responsible for area library service, have proposed abandoning its Central Library, Marcel Breuer’s last built project before his death, for a new “iconic” library. The structure is similar in character to the recently restored and adapted Met Breuer, the former Whitney Museum in Manhattan. The stated justification for this proposal is one part criticism of Brutalist architecture and one part failure to maintain the relevancy of the library system in a time when the primacy of the printed book is being called in to question by a plethora of digital offerings.

New York State Pavilion Ideas Competition
by info, posted on Thursday, May 26, 2016

On March 1, People for the Pavilion and the National Trust for Historic Preservation launched the New York State Pavilion Ideas Competition, an “anything goes” approach to radically reimagine one of New York City’s most iconic buildings and a defining landmark of Queens.

Modern Sculpture in the Garden State
by Liz Waytkus, posted on Thursday, May 5, 2016

Text and Images By: Meredith Arms Bzdak

Public sculpture in New Jersey is plentiful (numbering over seven hundred pieces statewide), with works by significant artists that tell many fascinating stories about our history, our values, and our aspirations. Generally, the sculpture created for placement in the public realm in New Jersey and beyond during the 19th and 20th centuries was always more stylistically conservative than sculpture created for broad artistic purposes, even within the oeuvre of a single artist. During the Modern era, this continued to be the case, with most works produced in a representational rather than abstract style.

What is it? Modernism and public art at Baltimore’s public schools
by info, posted on Thursday, May 5, 2016

By Eli Pousson, Director of Preservation and Outreach for Baltimore Heritage, with contributions from Ryan Patterson, Public Art Administration for the Baltimore Office of Promotion & the Arts.

Baltimore’s public schools are home to over 120 public art commissions—most of these works tied to a local boom in school building construction during the 1960s and 1970s. While some are the work of nationally known modern artists and designers, like Michio Ihara, Gyorgy Kepes, and Harry Bertoia, others are the work of artists, architects and designers with a regional practice or local following; some of whom had few commissions outside of Baltimore, or no public work outside of these midcentury school buildings.

Docomomo US welcomes two new Directors
by info, posted on Thursday, May 5, 2016

The Docomomo US Board of Directors is pleased to welcome two new members to the board: Todd Grover and Christopher Barley.

Mural Art in Quito: The implementation of mural art in the works of the Modern Movement
by info, posted on Thursday, May 5, 2016

Text and photographs by Glenda Puente

The context in which modern architecture developed in Quito was one that not only fostered a reinvention in the building realm but also throughout the arts.

Musings on Isamu Noguchi’s Hart Plaza
by info, posted on Thursday, May 5, 2016

By Jenny Dixon, Director
The Noguchi Museum

Detroit’s first ideas for a vast urban plaza at the terminus of Woodward Avenue and fronting on the Detroit River were laid in 1924, when the Detroit branch of the American Institute of Architects commissioned Eliel Saarinen to design it. The project was never fully realized. Perhaps Isamu Noguchi knew of this history when he responded to the invitation by the City of Detroit to submit plans for the Horace E. Dodge & Son Fountain at that same location just shy of fifty years later.

Upgrading the Mechanical Systems in Louis Kahn’s Richards Building
by info, posted on Thursday, April 21, 2016

By Matthew S. Chalifoux, AIA, Principal
EYP Architecture and Engineering, Washington, DC

Louis I. Kahn’s Alfred Newton Richards Medical Research Laboratory (Richards Building) at the University of Pennsylvania holds a unique place in the history of 20th century culture as one of the most influential buildings of the post-war era. Designed 1957-58 and completed in 1961, the Richards Building received international attention for its design before it was even completed, garnering a solo exhibition of the design at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, but its considerable functional shortcomings have been the target of much venom for over fifty years.

Post Modern Architecture: Documentation and Conservation
by info, posted on Thursday, April 21, 2016

By Peter Meijer, Docomomo US/Oregon

At the Docomomo US, Modern Matters, conference April 2013 in Sarasota, Florida, Docomomo US/Oregon presented a debate on the merits of Michael Graves Portland Building and on the larger context of Post Modernism in general. A lively debate at the end of the presentation centered on the merits of Docomomo incorporating Post Modern under the mission of the organization. In general, the support, or lack of support, for an expanded interpretation separated into two distinct viewpoints.

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