It’s ironic that MoMA presented one of the finest architectural exhibitions in years just as Barry Bergdoll, its widely admired curator of architecture, was stepping down, and its director was threatening to demolish the American Folk Art Museum—an architectural gem. Clearly, the gulf between the suits and the creatives yawns wide. If you missed the exhibition (and who wants to suffer New York in summer) you can catch it in Barcelona and Madrid next year. However, this companion book may prove more rewarding. A major reappraisal of a 20th-century master demands patient study of pictures, drawings and text, rather than abbreviated glimpses in a crowded gallery. From the seductive images of Richard Pare to the many essays that chart Corbu’s travels and his response to landscapes, this is a compelling, beautifully produced study that far outshines most books on the architect.
Entries in Le Corbusier (4)
Save the date for a very exciting upcoming exhibition in New York. For the first time in its history, MoMA will presents a major exhibition on the work of the influential and revered Le Corbusier (Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, 1887–1965). The exhibit, titled Le Corbusier: An Atlas of Modern Landscapes, will encompass his work as architect, interior designer, artist, city planner, writer, and photographer. And don’t forget the superlatives: according to the MoMA’s website, the presentation will be the “largest exhibition ever produced in New York of his prodigious oeuvre.” Running from June 9–September 23, 2013, the exhibition will be organized by guest curator Jean-Louis Cohen with Barry Bergdoll, the MoMA’s Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture and Design.
From Medici to Marx, how patronage drives architecture and what we can learn from it today.
By John Gendall
Historians position the Renaissance’s birth in Florence, Italy around the year 1400. They give it this coordinate in place and time because of a perfect storm of conditions: a wealth of talent pouring out from several accomplished workshops (Lorenzo Ghiberti, Fra Angelico, and Filipo Brunelleschi), a thriving economy owing to bustling trade, and, importantly, an ambitious and tasteful patron of the arts, the Medici family, willing to invest in provocative new art and architecture. In the midst of the Bubonic Plague, the revelation of the Florentine patrons served as a guiding light, paving they way for the exquisite work of the high renaissance. In other words, without the Medicis, there would have been no Michelangelo.
The same relationship between patron and architect carries through architectural history, with nobility, religious leaders, business owners tapping