Modern architecture would come to dominant architectural design after the destruction of WW2. It would later, largely, give way to postmodernism in the 1980’s.
Modernism or Modern Architecture is an architectural style that emerged in the early years of the 20th Century. Modernism would become the dominant architectural form in the aftermath and devastation of the Second World War across Europe.
It is characterized by its heavy use of new technologies with particular emphasis on the use of glass, steel and, of course, reinforced concrete. Many also define it as being the rejection of the old traditional neoclassical style and Beaux-Arts that were popularised during the previous century.
Modern Architecture would remain the dominant architectural form throughout most the 20th Century until it was deposed in the 1980’s by, the appropriately termed, postmodernist style.
Famous Modernist Architects
There have been many prominent Modernist architects throughout the years but the most notable include:-
Masterpiece or monstrosity? From Le Corbusier’s big housing project through to crumbling castles. Get to know this divisive design style.
What is Brutalist Architecture?
You may have heard of the term Brutalist architecture and thought, that sounds a bit harsh.. But the rough and aggressive name is the perfect moniker for this love-it-or-hate-it style of architecture. The word ‘brutal’ comes from the French béton brut, referring to the ‘raw cement’ used in many of these buildings. In Brutalist architecture this rawness refers to the stripped back and glaringly conspicuous concrete that composes the designs. Arguably the most controversial design movement of the 20th century, here is everything you wanted to know about Brutalist architecture.
Where and When
World War Two put an end to the frivolity of previous decades’ design styles. With determination and optimism, areas destroyed by enemy bombs were rebuilt across Europe. The post-war population boom exaggerated the need for housing around the world. To meet demand for affordable homes, architects moved to concrete as an inexpensive material that allowed for quick construction.
His concrete monoliths still divide opinion today, yet Le Corbusier is undoubtedly the most influential architect of the 20th century. Ulrike Lemmin-Woolfrey investigates.
Father of modern architecture, Le Corbusier was a true trailblazer. He was a contemporary and friend of Picasso and Dalí, who met Einstein and became infatuated with Josephine Baker. A man who travelled the globe, crossed the Atlantic in the Graf Zeppelin, and flew across South America with Saint-Exupéry. A man who once skinned his dead pet dog and then covered one of his books in its fur. A prolific painter and sculptor, an author of 34 books, a polemicist, a public speaker and lecturer. An architect who was called upon to design an entire city from scratch. A divisive urban planner who dreamed of razing central Paris to the ground to make space for concrete skyscrapers.
Le Corbusier’s work is now studied and debated by scholars and architects the world over.
A statement from the organization underscores the importance of UNESCO’s preservation efforts.
Last week, the State Department announced that the U.S. will withdraw from UNESCO—the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, which, among other activities, designates World Heritage Sites of architectural and cultural significance.
The Trump administration’s stated reasons for leaving the organization include UNESCO’s “anti-Israel bias” and past-due debts of more than $500 million. The U.S. would, however, remain as a non-member observer still contributing “views, perspectives and expertise on some of the important issues undertaken by the organization.”
This week, the professional organization American Institute of Architects (AIA), has a response.
AIA President Thomas Vonier calls for continued support of architecture and preservation efforts.
As news broke last week of the Trump administration’s plan for a U.S. departure from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), many were left fearful about potential ramifications on the group’s efforts domestically and abroad. For architecture and preservation, this was particularly poignant with regards to UNESCO’s World Heritage List, which legally protects sites—natural and man-made—bearing cultural, scientific, or historic significance (including many architectural gems). On Tuesday, one such voice, the American Institute of Architects (AIA), issued a statement in support of UNESCO’s work and underlining the importance of cultural preservation.
World Heritage Corb: next up in our series on the 17 buildings by Le Corbusier that have been added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List is the architect’s Notre Dame du Haut, the small chapel in Ronchamp, France, that has become one of his most iconic designs.
Completed in 1954, the Ronchamp chapel was built for a Catholic church on a pre-existing pilgrimage site. The previous stone building had been largely destroyed during the second world war.
It is considered one of the most important buildings of the 20th century, and represents a key shift away from the sparse, functionalist form of Modernism that Le Corbusier displayed in his earlier projects.
The main structure consists of thick masonry walls, which are curved to improve stability and provide structural support.