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Old November 3rd, 2009, 08:49 PM   #1
TomTack
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50's & 60's architecture

The architecture of the 1950s and 1960s is today reaching a critical point. Little by little, the buildings are deteriorating or disappearing. The new materials, reputed at the time to be permanent, have poor resistance to the passage of time. However, this architecture’s worst enemy still remains the indifference, indeed the contempt, that it continues to arouse among the public. This is due, in particular, to the banality of a large part of the production of the period, in which the examples of quality become lost.

As elsewhere in Europe, a policy for the protection of the major works of the post-war period is being organised in the Brussels region. The goodwill of owners who are aware of the quality of their asset also constitutes an effective driver for the protection of the architecture. The development of a realisation of the value of these constructions is urgently needed in order to preserve the fragile balance on which their appeal rests.
Brussels:

Le Corbusier & Yannis Xenakis: Philips Pavilion, Brussels, 1958. The Philips Pavilion was demolished on January 30, 1959. Like most world's fair buildings, it was a temporary structure never meant to remain standing beyond the duration of the fair:









The Atomium is a monument built for Expo '58, the 1958 Brussels World's Fair. Designed by André Waterkeyn, it is 102-metres (335 ft) tall, with nine steel spheres connected so that the whole forms the shape of a unit cell of an iron crystal magnified 165 billion times, The monument was originally planned to remain standing only six months. However, it soon became a symbol not only of the World's Fair, but of modern architecture and Brussels:









Headquarters of the CBR cement works, architects Constantin L. Brodzki and Marcel Lambrichs, designed between 1967-1968, built in 1970:





Longchamp Swimming Pool, architects Charles De Meutter and Jean Koning, designed between 1965 and 1967, built between 1969 and 1971:



Headquarters of the former Parti social chrétien, architects René Aerts and Paul Ramon, 1964:



Apartment building Brussels, architect Paul-Amaury Michel, 1955:



Everaert villa, a masterpiece of the architect Jacques Dupuis. Nevertheless, in 1951, its building permit was obtained with a hard struggle:









Brussels, architects Léon Stynen and Paul De Meyer, designed from 1956 to 1960, built from 1958 to 1965.:





Demolished in 2001, the Rogier International Centre gathered together an impressive number of functions: apartments, offices, theatre, exhibition rooms, commercial galleries, bank, general clinic, car parking, bus station, service station and panoramic restaurant, architect Jacques Cuisinier, designed in 1957, built from 1958 to 1960:





At the foot of the housing unit that he designs for the Ieder Zijn Huis cooperative, Willy Van Der Meeren builds another revolutionary unit in 1962: small strips of housing for pensioners, established in surroundings planted with trees recalling those of garden cities:







family house, architect Leo De Vos, 1960:



family house, architects Walter Bade and J. Rouvez, 1961-1962:



apartment building, architects Willy Van Der Meeren and Léon Palm, 1959:



If the Notre-Dame de Stockel church were not topped by a concrete cross, it would probably be thought to be a sports hall. The initial project, with its more explicit mystical references such as a pyramid roof, could not be created because of a calculation error by the engineer, architects René Aerts and Paul Ramon, designed in 1957-1958, built between 1962 and 1967:



Style 58 appears several years before the Brussels world exhibition to which it gives its name, as attested to by this amazing house designed in 1955 by the architect Jacques Dupuis:







Built between party walls, the Mirano stands out with an enormous concrete canopy topped with a tall sign. Lines of neon converge towards the entrance, as if to show the spectator the path to follow, architect René Ajoux, 1950:





From the beginning of the 1960s, voices rise against the robbing of the curtain wall's originality which has lost its revolutionary novelty and whose uniform extension to buildings for all purposes constitutes a danger for genuine creators (La Maison, issue 6, 1964). The exposed skeleton technique then establishes itself: the building's load-bearing system is displayed in the façade, in front of recessed walls of glass, architect Gordon Bunshaft (Skidmore, Owings and Merrill office of architects), designed in 1959, built from 1961 to 1965:



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Old November 3rd, 2009, 10:21 PM   #2
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Shalom Meir Tower, Tel Aviv, 1959-1965 by Yitzhak Pearlstein, Gideon Ziv, Meir Levy. It used to be the tallest building in the Middle East:







Tel Aviv's municipality building, 1965-1965, by Menahem Cohen (one of the ugliest buildings in the world IMO):



El-Al building, 1958-1963:



Hilton Tel-Aviv, 1965:

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Old November 3rd, 2009, 10:36 PM   #3
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so cool, got inspired for a overcast work i have to do :P
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Old November 4th, 2009, 03:40 AM   #4
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I really hate all that crap.
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Old November 4th, 2009, 11:17 AM   #5
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The Gallery Ravenstein is a typical example of monumental modernism, an architecture stream very popular post-war (WW2). It was designed by the architects Alexis and Phillipe Dumont in 1954 and it was finished in 1958.
Like the Brussels Central Station it was a part of the North-South Junction project.
Since 2009 the gallery is a protected monument.
It holds some shops and an interesting glass dome ceiling.




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Old November 4th, 2009, 11:39 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JmB & Co. View Post
I really hate all that crap.
"this architecture’s worst enemy still remains the indifference, indeed the contempt, that it continues to arouse among the public. This is due, in particular, to the banality of a large part of the production of the period, in which the examples of quality become lost"

SO LET'S SHOW 50's & 60's QUALITY ARCHITECTURE HERE!!!!
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Old November 4th, 2009, 03:39 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TomTack View Post
"this architecture’s worst enemy still remains the indifference, indeed the contempt, that it continues to arouse among the public. This is due, in particular, to the banality of a large part of the production of the period, in which the examples of quality become lost"

SO LET'S SHOW 50's & 60's QUALITY ARCHITECTURE HERE!!!!
I think the problem is that a lot of what you've put down as quality is actually pretty awful. I agree that there are some amazing examples of 50's & 60's architecture. But so much of it is so bad that people don't really notice or appreciate the good stuff.
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Old November 5th, 2009, 03:21 AM   #8
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Tom, that architecture is awful. I admit that there were some "interesting" designs by that time, but the average architecture by then was really ugly.
From the buildings you show in this thread, the 90% depress me.

One of the worst influences was Lecorbusier. He created the crap architecture we see nowadays.
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Old November 5th, 2009, 03:34 AM   #9
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interesting façade
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Old November 5th, 2009, 06:14 PM   #10
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Mid-century modern can be quite beautiful. And remember that the experimentation in new materials was advanced to new hights in this era.

At its best, the style highlights sleek, clean lines, a wonderful sense of setting, and a wonderful use of light.

A lovely domestic example in the Chicago area:




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Old November 5th, 2009, 06:17 PM   #11
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Many Midwestern gems in the US, to be sure. This one is in Des Moines, Iowa, about 5 hours drive west of Chicago.





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Old November 5th, 2009, 06:31 PM   #12
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Some amazing architecture in this thread. My personal favourite building of the time is Birmingham's Central Library. Most people recoil in horror when they first see it as I did but over the years it has grown on me an awful lot. There is a certain strength and power to it. Unfortunately despite presently being considered for "listing" as a building of architectural importance the local council seem determined to have it destroyed.

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Old November 5th, 2009, 06:55 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Telfordboy View Post
Some amazing architecture in this thread. My personal favourite building of the time is Birmingham's Central Library. Most people recoil in horror when they first see it as I did but over the years it has grown on me an awful lot. There is a certain strength and power to it. Unfortunately despite presently being considered for "listing" as a building ar architectural importance the local council seem determined to have it destroyed.
This is an unfortunate and common occurence.

Recently, the same fate fell on one of the 8 Walter Gropius buildings in Chicago. There are now only 7.

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Old November 5th, 2009, 07:17 PM   #14
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The Seagram Building is a skyscraper in New York City, located at 375 Park Avenue, between 52nd Street and 53rd Street in Midtown Manhattan. It was designed by the German architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, in collaboration with the American Philip Johnson and was completed in 1958. It is 515 feet tall with 38 stories. Severud Associates were the structural engineering consultants. It stands as one of the finest examples of the functionalist aesthetic and a masterpiece of corporate modernism. It was designed as the headquarters for the Canadian distillers Joseph E. Seagram's & Sons.





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Old November 5th, 2009, 07:19 PM   #15
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the last one is cool
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Old November 5th, 2009, 07:24 PM   #16
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Informally known as "Ronchamp", the chapel of Notre Dame du Haut in Ronchamp (French: Chapelle Notre-Dame-du-Haut de Ronchamp), completed in 1954, is one of the finest examples of the architecture of Franco-Swiss architect Le Corbusier and one of the most important examples of twentieth-century religious architecture.









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Old November 5th, 2009, 07:31 PM   #17
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Floating above Creole cottages and Victorian shotgun houses of the Tremé/Lafitte neighborhood of New Orleans is the glass-and-steel Phillis Wheatley Elementary School. In 1954, the architect Charles Colbert constructed an elevated cantilevered steel truss structure to provide an expansive shaded playground area, protecting the schoolchildren from the tropical climate. Progressive for a school facility at the time, the building was critically acclaimed and its design was exhibited internationally. The building is a valuable example of regional modernism in a city most noted for its 18th- and 19th-century architecture.

More than 50 years later, the elevated form proved highly effective in protecting the Phillis Wheatley Elementary School from the floods of Hurricane Katrina. Since the hurricane, the Orleans Parish School Board has shuttered the building, and decay and vandalism have taken their toll on this striking statement of modern design. Demolition of the edifice to construct a new school has been proposed, and Docomomo-Louisiana has countered this proposal by suggesting an adaptive reuse of the building as a community center. This alternative to demolition would raise public awareness of an architectural gem unique to New Orleans and encourage community building in an area still recovering from disaster.





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Old November 5th, 2009, 07:40 PM   #18
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Brasilia, Brazil, 1956

The competition for the urban master plan was won by Brazilian architect and urban planner, Lucio Costa. The major government buildings were designed by the Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer. Landscape designer Roberto Burle Marx planned the layout and selection of plant varieties to add a vivid green backdrop to the otherwise dry, yellow landscape of the savanna vegetation.
On April 21, 1960, Brasilia was officially inaugurated and started functioning as the new capital of Brazil.















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Old November 5th, 2009, 08:00 PM   #19
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Trellick Tower is a 31-storey block of flats in North Kensington, London, W10. It was designed in the Brutalist style by architect Ernő Goldfinger [1], after a commission from the Greater London Council in 1966, and completed in 1972. It is a Grade II* listed building and is 98 metres (322 ft) tall (120 metres (394 ft) including the communications mast).









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Old November 5th, 2009, 08:05 PM   #20
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Tour Initiale (previously known as tour Nobel) is an office building located in La Défense business district just west of Paris, France. The 105 m (344 ft) Tour Initiale was the first office tower built in the La Défense district with its construction being completed in 1966. In 1988, the tower was given an internal renovation, and the new name of Tour Initiale.

The Tour Initiale was designed by architects Jean de Mailly and Jacques Depussé and engineer Jean Prouvé who designed the building's glass facade. The tower uses curved glass on the building's corners, which, at the time of construction, was generally unknown in France and the glass had to be imported from the United States.

This highrise should be completely renovated in the upcoming years in the frame of the first stage of the large-scale redevelopment of La Défense business district which is planned from 2006 to 2013.





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