Monday, June 29, 2009

262. University of East Anglia


Dear Peter

Denys Lasdun's fascination with geology, with
the "lie of the land" (which he himself maintained
learnt from Frank Lloyd Wright), becomes
somehow overwelming in the glazed residential
quarters shaped like ziggurats at the University of
East Anglia. In any rate they stand as a fascinating
counterpoint of the High-Tech Sainsbury Centre for
Visual Arts by Norman Foster located also on this
campus.

Sincerely.
R

Saturday, June 27, 2009

261. Museo Nacional de Arte Romano, Merida, España


Querida Patricia,

El Museo Nacional de Arte Romano
de Merida, obra de Rafael Moneo esta
organizado en su cuerpo principal a
traves de una serie de muros de fabrica
de ladrillo paralelos entre si. La apertura
de grandes arcos contiguos iguales en estos
muros ademas de conformar el espacio de la
nave principal, sugieren las dimensiones que
en su dia tuviera la Merida romana al estar
dimensionados en base a las proporciones del
Arco de Trajano. El sistema de muros paralelos
se manifiesta en la fachada sur como un sistema
de contrafuertes que hacen referencia formal al
Acueducto de los Milagros.

Besos.
R

Thursday, June 25, 2009

260. Vyborg. The Central Library building 1927-35


Dear Mark

"When I designed the Viipuri City Library (and
I had plenty of time, a whole five years), I spent
long periods getting my range, as it were, with naive
drawings. I drew all kinds of fantastic mountain
landscapes, with slopes lit by many suns in different
positions, which gradually gave rise to the main idea
of the building. The architectural framework of the
library comprises several reading and lending areas
stepped at different levels, with the administrative
and supervisory centre at the peak. My childlike
drawings were only indirectly linked with architectural
thinking, but they eventually led to an interweaving of
the section and ground plan, and to a kind of unity of
horizontal and vertical construction."
(Alvar Aalto, "The Trout and the Stream", 1947)

Regards
R

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

259. Enskede Parti av Skogskyrkogarden


Dear Graziella,

This Stockholm cemetery was created between 1917
and 1920 by architects Asplund and Lewerentz. The
design blends vegetation and architectural elements
creating a landscape that is finely adapted to its function.
Greta Garbo and Gunnar Asplund are two among many
notable people buried here.

Cordially
R

Sunday, June 21, 2009

258. San Francisco Store designed by Frank Lloyd Wright for V.C. Morris


Cristina,

Has conseguido comprar por fin el pasaje del que me
hablaste? Este es una de los sitios a los que he pensado
llevarte. Se que te gustara.

Mil besos.
R

Friday, June 19, 2009

257. Avenida Paulista. Sao Paulo, Brazil



Dear Auntie Dorothy

In Sao Paulo I stayed in a beautiful hotel located
at the famous Avenida Paulista. Very close to it
the fantastic Sao Paulo Museum of Art was built
in 1968. Half underground and half suspended
from a structure, the visible building stand 25 feet
above the floor by means of four pillars connected
by two huge concrete beams. This way the original
and historic plot, the Belvedere Trianon, remains
open to the city keeping at the same time the
magnificent view of the Serra da Cantareira, the
largest native urban forest in the world.

Love.
R

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

256. Kouvola Suomi Finland-. he Town Hall


Querida Cristina,

En Finlandia visito este ayuntamiento obra de Leiviska.
Disfrutandolo he recordado la reflexion de Reima Pietila
sobre la magnifica calidad de la arquitectura finlandesa.
Pietila decia que esa calidad respondia al efecto de la tipica
tarjeta navideña: un metro de nieve en el suelo, un metro
de nieve en la cubierta, y en la estrecha banda intermedia
las ventanas como unica referencia de la presencia de un
edificio. Por esa razon esas ventanas tienen que estar tan
bien diseñadas.

Mil besos como siempre.
R

Monday, June 15, 2009

255. Amsterdam De Beurs



Querido Manolo,

Hoy, por fin he estado en el edificio de la Bolsa. Por
supuesto me he acordado de tu consejo y he recorrido
la galeria alta que atraviesa las grandes salas. Gracias
una vez mas por todo.

Un abrazo.
R

Saturday, June 13, 2009

254. Suomi. Finlandia talon konserttisali


Querida Sybille,

Hoy he podido revivir el dia que nos llevastes a la
Opera de Essen y nos quedamos apabullados ante
tanta arquitectura sublime. La Sala de conciertos del
complejo Finlandia en Helsinki es tan elocuente como
Essen. Tanto aun que aprender...!

Besos
R

Thursday, June 11, 2009

253. Netherlands Dance Theatre. The Hague


Dear Zoe,

In my opinion Madelon should have worked in this
space to add more of her "circular thinking". I know
her largest painting is on the stage tower, but that is
outside. When I was in there last night and saw the
wonderful dancers performing I couldn't stop myself
imagining the scene of the "Flagrant Delit". Then the
famous buildings were also dancing in the walls...

Regards.
R

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

252. Caracas. Aula Magna de la Universidad Central


Dear Alvar,

I enjoyed very much Ciudad Universitaria with its
ingenious interpretation of concepts and spaces of
colonial traditions, its splendid modern architecture
and its memorable open and ventilated solutions so
appropriate for the tropical environment. After seen
the real clouds walking through the covered plaza I
went in the Aula Magna and found the other "Clouds"
of Alexander Calder. An overall magical experience!

Sincerely
R

Sunday, June 7, 2009

251. Brasil Turistico. Aspecto interno da Catedral



Mary Kate,

En Brasilia he entrado en la Catedral Metropolitana
Nossa Senhora Aparecida, famosa obra de Niemeyer.
Los angeles de Bruno Giorgi que parecen sobrevolar
el espacio son una forma de subrayar el concepto de
cielo tan hermosamente representado en los colores
y el diseño de los inmensos vitrales.
Todo parece indicar aqui un movimiento vertical
ascendente que se contrapone brutalmente con la
horizontalidad imperante en esta increible ciudad.

Tuyo siempre.
R

Friday, June 5, 2009

250. South Bank Exhibition



Manolo,

Otro bicho gigante! un Skylon posado en Londres!
Este desgraciadamente lo mato ya hace mucho, y
de un fuerte manotazo Sir Winston (Churchill, of
course) ...por feo y comunista.

Abrazos.
R

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

249. Barcelona. Torre de Collcerola


Querido Manolo,

De esta estructura podriamos hablar
de la sinergia entre tension y
compresion de sus partes
(tu me dirias eso es tensegridad,
tu sabes no?). Sin embargo a mi me
apetece mas dejarme llevar por la
fantasia de pensar esto como un
gigantesco mosquito. Sus finisimas
patas son los 9 cables de acero que
la anclan a la montaña y su aguijon,
ya clavado en la tierra, el mastil
central; su diminuto cuerpo las
plantas colgadas a la mitad que van
hinchandose lentamente de la
sangre robada.

Un abrazo.
R

Monday, June 1, 2009

248. The Casino Pleasure Beach. Blackpool


Dear Sarah,

Joseph Emberton designed this building in 1937 that
was opened in May 1939. Although a very different
building, the Casino inevitably draws comparison with
the De la Warr Pavilion designed by Erich Mendelsohn.
Its main staircase, however, owes something to
Gropius’s model factory for the 1914 Werkbund
Exhibition at Cologne.

Best regards.
R