May, 7, 2012,
4:13 PM

Visiting Vienna, Bon vivanting in Brno

Several Mies Society members have joined Director Justine Jentes on a tour of great modern (and not-so-modern) architecture in Czech Republic and Germany.

Here are up-to-the-minute snapshots from Day Two of our trip: we ventured through Vienna, Austria and Brno, Czech Republic.

Above: here’s part of the campus at the technical university in Vienna.

Above: our hotel’s lobby could be characterized as… well, you fill in the blank… and Mies Society Director Justine Jentes takes a breather on this silver sofa…

Shabby chic versus modern sleek: So why is this dirty facade considered distinguished (admire that chiaroscuro) but old Mies buildings can’t get away with a scrubby appearance?

Here’s a thought:

"With great simplicity comes great maintenance" (apologies to Voltaire)

Above: an architectural juxtaposition at the historic center of Brno. This city has lots of well-preserved old buildings painted in yellows, light blues, and pale greens. The glass and steel structure at left stands out in its simplicity.

That’s all for now, folks.

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May, 7, 2012,
3:48 PM
May, 3, 2012,
1:12 PM

We’re off to Czech it out

TO SEE PICTURES FROM ALMOST EVERY DAY OF OUR TRIP, CLICK “BLOG” IN THE TOP RIGHT CORNER OF THIS PAGE AND VIEW ENTRIES PRECEDING MAY 15, 2012.

The Mies van der Rohe Society is about to leave for its much-anticipated trip to Europe, with stops at Villa Tugendhat in Brno, Czech Republic and sundry hot spots in Berlin.

For a taste of what we’ll see at the newly restored Villa Tugendhat, a breakthrough Mies home, read this insightful review. And stay tuned for our updates from Europe.

A view of Mies’ recently restored Villa Tugendhat in Brno, Czech Republic

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Apr, 13, 2012,
4:27 PM

Lafayette Park comes to Chicago

CHICAGO: This summer, Crown Hall will host an exhibition about one of Mies’ breakthrough buildings. (Imagine, a Mies building hosting an exhibition about a Mies building, how meta!)

From June 7 to July 27, “Lafayette Park: The Settlement Shape: An Exhibition of Mies’ Detroit-based Urban Renewal Project,” will be on display and free to the public.

Lafayette Park was the first urban renewal project in the United States and remains a model of efficient, community-minded living. It is a simplistic building that embodies apparent contraditions. It was designed for car owners, but parking spaces are discreet. It was built across the street from an elementary school, but children don’t need to cross the street to get there.

The exhibition is free and open to the public Mondays through Fridays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

See photos of Lafayette Park residents here and here.

Photo by Werner Blaser

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