Wednesday, April 29, 2009

232. Lever House, New York

Dear Aldo,

This building is located directly across
Park Avenue from the Seagram Building
by Mies van der Rohe. It was one of the
first Curtain Wall modern office buildings
in the U.S. and architecturally and
programmatically a big revolution.
Needlessly to say that the Lever House
has been much copied elsewhere from
Buenos Aires to Copenhagen.

Best regards.

Monday, April 27, 2009

231. Buenos Aires. Teatro Colon y Edificio Fiat

Dear Claude,

The Torre Mirafiore (called Edificio Fiat when completed
back in 1964) made me to remember the wonderful Royal
Hotel where I stayed when I was in Copenhagen.

All the best.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

230.Copenhagen, Denmark, Hotel Royal

Dear Claude,

The Alberto K gourmet restaurant, on
the 20th floor of the Hotel Royal has besides
a marvelous menu a breathtaking view.
All Jacobsen details are preciousness too.
See you soon in Buenos Aires.

Take care

Thursday, April 23, 2009

229. Vista Aerea de la Ciudad Universitaria. Caracas, Venezuela

Dear Alexander,

The unquestionable reference of this magnificent covered
plaza designed by Villanueva, is Le Corbusier's lobby in
the Palace of the Soviets project of 1931. This plaza works
as a lobby for the theater and the rectory and it is decorated
with art works by Bloc, Calder, Pevsner etc. It has been an
inspiration for many architects, including Alvaro Siza when
designing the Portugal Pavilion for the Expo 98.


Tuesday, April 21, 2009

228. California Academy of Sciences

Dear Jan

“I try to get at the fundamental emotion of a site. The
roof design is like lifting up a piece of the park and putting
a building under it.” (Renzo Piano)
Now Jan you have another good reason to come back to
San Francisco.


Sunday, April 19, 2009

227. Barcelona. Parque Guell, Columnas del Teatro Griego.

Querido Alfonso,

Esta estructura de columnas levantada
por Gaudi me inspira pensar en conceptos
como solidez y belleza, ambos reunidos
aqui simultaneamente. Es tambien como las
amistades viejas, tal como la nuestra.

Un abrazo

Friday, April 17, 2009

226. Berlin (West) Internationale Bauaustellung

Querido Juan,

Segun Enric Miralles, la obra de Peter Eisenman es util
para pensar. Segun el, desde un pensamiento acerca de
ella podremos desplazarnos a los lugares donde es
posible preguntarse por el sentido de la arquitectura.
Siento no haber podido verte esta vez en Sevilla. La
proxima vez sera y quizas entonces podamos
preguntarnos juntos por el sentido de la arquitectura.

Un abrazo muy fuerte.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

225. Torino. Il Salone Internazionale delle Tecnica al Palazzo delle Esposizioni al Valentino


Durante algunos años de su vida Pier Luigi Nervi se
dedico al estudio de cubiertas de grandes dimensiones
construidas con elementos prefabricados de hormigon
armado. En este campo su indiscutible obra maestra
es la cúpula del Palacio de Exposiciones de Turín
(1948-49). Esta cubierta esta contituida por una celosia
ondulada de un espesor de 5 cm y una altura media de
1.5 m que es capaz de salvar una luz de 76 m. El inmenso
espacio es tan dramatico como el de las grandes catedrales


Monday, April 13, 2009

224. Markuskyrkan, Skarpnacks forsamling, Bjorkhagen, Stockholm

Dear Sven,

Lewerentz talked about ancient Persian masonry walls when
asked for the design process of his famous Church of St. Mark.
Indeed the archaic and closed walls of the building stand against
the light birch grove on the site and continue inside the building
with wonderful masonry vaults ceilings.
St. Mark's was completed in 1960 when Lewerentz was 75 and it
was the building that consolidated his position as the living
master amongst Swedish architects.

Best regards.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

223. Whitney Museum of American Art

Dear Arnt,

"Modern Architecture is not a style,
It's an attitude" (Marcel Breuer)


Thursday, April 9, 2009

222. San Francisco Store designed by Frank Lloyd Wright for V.C. Morris 140 Maiden Lane

Dear Bob,

When questioned by V.C. Morris
about the omission of storefront
windows on the facade, Frank Lloyd
Wright replied:
"We are not going to dump your
beautiful merchandise on the street,
but create an arch-tunnel of glass, into
which the passers-by may look and be
enticed. As they penetrate further into
the entrance, seeing the shop inside
with its spiral ramp and tables set with
fine china and crystal, they will suddenly
push open the door, and you've got

Nice mouse trap!


Tuesday, April 7, 2009

221. Rotterdam, Calandplein, Monument en Passage

Dear Louetta,

During the bombing of the city center of Rotterdam in
1940, the original Cafe de Unie (1925) built by J.J.P.
Oud was destroyed. It stood at the Coolsingel and it
shows here in this old postcard partially behind the
monument. In 1986 the façade was reproduced in a
different location. The design is a perfect example of
the Dutch artistic movement De Stijl with its use of
primary colours and simple abstract composition.


Sunday, April 5, 2009

220. Dudley Zoo

Dear Uncle Dudley,

British Dudley Zoo (1935-37) is a regrettable neglected
monument of national significance. Berthold Lubetkin,
the main architect, once said: “A society that openly
professes that the present is expendable and the future
unintelligible begets artists who have to scream to be
noticed and remembered for a quarter of an hour.”

Best regards.

Friday, April 3, 2009

219. New York World's Fair. The Brazilian Pavilion

Dear Lucia,

The Brazilian pavilion was one of the outstanding features
of the 1939 World's Fair. It was so, that the mayor of NY,
Fiorello La Guardia conferred the accolade of honorary
citizen of New York City on architect Niemeyer, a
declared communist.


Wednesday, April 1, 2009

218. Cantabria, Santander. Palacio de Festivales


Aun recuerdo cuando Don Francisco nos dijo que algo
importante en este edificio era penetrar en el ascendiendo
desde la escena como un Epidauro y anclarlo en la bahia
para dejarlo clavado ahi para siempre.