Beautiful Architect

The Invisible Architect of Invisible Architecture

At the height of his popularity, R. Buckminster Fuller,
the visionary inventor best known as the father of the
geodesic dome, was on a mission. Fuller repeatedly
referred to his great friend, the architect Knud Lonberg-Holm
—a “really great architect of the Nysky (New York skyscraper)
age”—whom Fuller said “has been completely unrecognized
and unsung,” and whose “scientific foresight and design
competence are largely responsible for the present world
around the state of advancement of the building arts.”
KLH_up_PR_MB2
Knud Lonberg-Holm (1895-1972),
an overlooked but highly influential
Modernist architect, photographer,
and pioneer of information design,
is the subject of an exhibition at the
Ubu Gallery in New York City,
through August 1, 2014.

I stumbled upon a fascinating article about
the architect Lonberg-Holm. He is one of the
most overlooked yet influential architects
of the 20th century.  Knud Lonberg-Holm
told Buckminster Fuller that “the really great
architect will be the architect who produces
the invisible house where you don’t see roofs
or walls,” Fuller explained in House & Garden.
“I’ve thought about this, thought about  it a lot,
the ultimately invisible house—doing more with
less and finally coming to nothingness.”
Lonberg-Holm’s modernity and exquisite
techniques were well ahead of his time.

Read the fascinating article here.

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Chicago Tribune Tower
This design of a side elevation for the 1922 Chicago

Tribune Tower competition, by Lonberg-Holm,
favored a functional composition that was devoid
of historical styles. It featured an abstract,
black-and-white pattern to articulate its frame and a
vertical sign spelling “Tribune” in large block letters,
flanked by two round lamps reminiscent of automobile
headlights. Lonberg-Holm never submitted his entry
for the competition, but it was published in a number
of books by avant-garde architects like Le Corbusier,
Walter Gropius, and J.P.P. Oud.

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Radio Broadcasting Station, Detroit
This design, ca. 1925, was included in the landmark

1927 Machine Age exhibition—advertised as “the
first International Exposition of Architecture to be
held in America.” The New Yorker critic Muriel Draper
reviewed the project and wrote: “The delicacy and
exquisite technique of execution shown in the plans may
have much to do with it, but a glass tower with a visibly
spiralling staircase took me straight up in the air while
the simple, solid proportions of the building itself kept
my feet on the earth. Pleasant sensation.”

 

Beautiful Chicago

Chicago has some of the best art and architecture.
Dare I say  Chicago has better architecture
than NYC in some ways. The modern movement is
more prominent and nobody did it better than FLW.

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