US Modernist Radio - Architecture You Love

US Modernist Radio - Architecture You Love

Join Mr. Modernism George Smart and crew as they talk and laugh with people who enjoy, own, create, dream about, preserve, love, and hate Modernist architecture, the most exciting and controversial buildings in the world. USModernist Radio is backed by the nonprofit educational archive USModernist, the largest open digital archive for Modernist residential architecture in America. www.usmodernist.org

Episodes

May 10, 2021 61 min

From an author who’s created a worldwide book of mostly Modernist buildings to a master Modernist who created beautiful buildings across the world, we’ve got a great show today. Joining us first is Adam Štěch, author of the new book Modern Architecture and Interiors, an atlas of more than one thousand Modernist architectural masterpieces;  next a true master, architect Victor Lundy, along with Lundy author Donna Kacmar, and later o...

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Way before there was an internet, the way people learned about buildings outside of their city was in architecture magazines. Initially in black and white, which still has a certain allure, and later in color, magazines such as Architectural Record, Progressive Architecture, Art and Architecture, Architecture Forum, House and Home, and Architecture Plus chronicled new construction.  All of these publications, sadly, are gone – exce...

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We love visiting great architecture and Modernist architecture does get visited – a lot – but nothing compares to the number of people who enjoy it through photography.? Especially this last year, when we’ve all been hunkered down awaiting vaccinations, we’re reading and streaming visions of amazing homes, offices, and urban planning.? Join us today is Wayne Thom, a photographer famous for capturing Late Modern architecture in the ...

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Researching Modernist architecture hasn't always been easy, particularly before the internet, if anyone remembers back that far. Before our phones were full of Cardi B, Tik Tok, and $32 million inheritance offers, pending a $1200 processing fee, of course, researching Modernism meant spending time in real life deep in a major library. Fortunately, the web brings incredible research resources and tools without leaving the comfor...

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2020 was the fourth year USModernist Radio has been part of the New York Architecture and Design Film Festival, if by festival you mean online and by New York you mean anywhere on earth. Every fall, the authors, producers, experts, stars, and creators gather to premiere their latest architecture and design documentaries.  Today we talk with Rikke Selin Fokdal and Kaspar Astrup Schröde, producers of the new documentary Making A Moun...

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Everybody’s got some niche they are into, right?  There are cat people, NASCAR people, golfing people, escape room people, and even after 55 years, Star Trek people. Today we welcome leaders in two special niches of Modernism, Beth Lennon, aka Mod Betty, of Retro Roadmap, and Howard and Gaby Morris of GreyScape, a London website dedicated to Brutalism, Modernism, and Constructivist design. Later on, jazz with the wonderful Melissa ...

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Whenever our friends the Classicists want to troll Modernism, they claim it's Communist-inspired and therefore no good. Since we have never known any building to determine economic policy, joining us are two people who dive deep into this "concrete" issue in the former Eastern Bloc: Haruna Honcoop, director of the film Built to Last: Relics of Communist Era Architecture, and Marie Kordovska, granddaughter of of Věra and...

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Harriet Pattison met renowned architect Louis Kahn in 1953 at Yale, but the real sparks flew years later in Philadelphia where she and Lou Kahn had a romantic relationship and a son, Nathaniel. It was, um, complicated. Pattison is an accomplished landscape architect, working in the Vermont office of the famous Dan Kiley and studied landscape architecture under Ian McHarg at the University of Pennsylvania School of Fine Arts. She co...

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It’s one thing when neighbors don’t like that butterfly mother in law shed in your backyard.  It’s another when thousands of people in a city are without housing and neighborhoods don’t want them anywhere close.  Over the decades, architecture has proclaimed the solution to this and other social problems can be solved through design, but as Dr. Phil might ask, “how’d that work out?”  Not so well, as large mid-century public housing...

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Well-known Modernist architects came to fame in a time before computers, a time where getting published in magazines was the mid-century equivalent of going viral.  Even if an architect lived in a large metro such as Los Angeles, world of mouth and house tours wouldn’t get you the big commissions.  Blowing up meant having photos of your work in major publications of the era. To get those photos, you had to have a great photographer...

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If you’re a longtime listener, you know we have a special place in our hearts for Palm Springs, the mecca of Modernism, the home of the international film festival, the bedroom for concerts in Indio, and the cruising town that Sonny Bono cleaned up in the late 1980’s before he ran for Governor.  It’s our home away from home, but even Paris has reinvent itself from time to time.  Today’s guests are looking to 2030, 2040, and beyond,...

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This is the fourth year USModernist Radio has been part of the New York Architecture and Design Film Festival, if by festival you mean online and by New York you mean anywhere on earth.  Every fall, the authors, producers, experts, stars, and creators gather to premiere their latest architecture and design documentaries, and this year because of COVID Executive Director Kyle Bergman completely re-engineered a wildly successful in-p...

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Architect Charles Dubois was famous for designing houses in California which earned the nickname Swiss Miss.  Designer Leonora Mahle takes us inside.  Later on, for something completely different, we’ll visit with Lady Carnarvon, the owner of Downton Abbey, aka Highclere Castle.  Set on 5000 acres, it’s the most famous house in Britain, except perhaps for an adorable little London starter home, by comparison, called Buckingham Pala...

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Like the Supremes, or Destiny’s Child, today’s guests have been rocking with the greatest hits of Modernist design for decades as the daughters or granddaughters of its most iconic architects and designers, Charles and Ray Eames, Eero Saarinen, and Harry Bertoia.  Carla Hartman, Susan Saarinen, and Celia Bertoia are the best of friends and speak around the country as the Daughters of Design. 

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Before Bjarke Ingels, before Tom Kundig, before Charlie Gwathmey, even before Richard Neutra, two brothers rocked the architecture scene in southern California in the early 1900’s. Funded by the family behind Ivory Soap, Proctor and Gamble’s first product, Charles and Henry Greene perfected the modern bungalow in Pasadena and influenced a giant in Modernist architecture, Harwell Hamilton Harris.  Joining us is Ted Bosley, Executive...

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In 1959, the US had 48 states and a population of 177 million, Frank Sinatra won his first Grammy for Come Dance with Me, DH Lawrence’s Lady Chatterly’s Lover, which had been banned for decades, became OK to print, and a certain exciting and controversial architect died in his 90’s.  Frank Lloyd Wright left an incredible legacy of innovative and beautiful buildings, one of which just changed hands last year in Phoenix, Arizona.  We...

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In 1978, Australia decided to replace their old Congress, or Parliament House, in the capitol of Canberra. The competition drew 329 entries from 29 countries.  The winner was a Modernist design from the Philadelphia firm of Mitchell/Giurgola. Today we meet project architect Hal Guida, plus Felicity Abbott, the production designer for Secret City, a Australian TV political thriller starring Anna Torv filmed extensively at Parliament...

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Some Classicists are so passionate about Modernist architecture they create a well-financed, highly effective organization to point out the flaws of Modernist buildings and actively discourage new Modernist projects. Every Classicist we talk to mentions today’s guest, Catesby Leigh, who has written about architecture for over 30 years. He co-founded the National Classical Art Society, headed by past podcast guest Justin Shubow, whi...

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Architect Maria Ludwig Michael Mies changed his name.  He added his mother's maiden name Rohe and the Dutch “van der” to become, drum roll please, Mies van der Rohe. Most of his fans just refer to him as Mies – like Cher or Moby or Beyonce, he’s still one of the most famous architects in the world some 50 years after his death.  Today we talk about his greatest house – the Farnsworth House – with Alex Beam, author of the new bo...

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In 1966 the first episode of Gene Roddenberry's Star Trek launched a franchise still going strong over fifty years later.  Sequels, movies, toys, fan films - there’s just no end to Star Trek’s bright, progressive, optimistic future where Earth has transcended national and international politics. Something architecture fans may have missed, and we certainly did, is that Star Trek adapted midcentury Modern furniture for the set d...

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