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Post Modernism and Sustainable Design

--- Post-Modern --- Sustainable Architecture

I.M.Pei --- Louvre Pyramid--- Hancock--- other

Arthur Erickson ------Canadian Embassy ---- Residence---

Frank Gehry ---- Guggenheim Bilbao--- Band Shell-- AGO

Norman Foster ----- Cologne-- Fosterino--- Gherkin- - More London - - Nimes- - Toronto

-- Alsop--- Dubai --- other

Post Modern

The intent and philosophy of Post - Modernist architecture is very similar to the Baroque. Where Baroque architects were finding the Classical vocabulary stifling, the Post Modern architects were finding the minimalism of the Modernist movement similarly oppressive. They maintained that less is just less and is suffocatingly boring. Many applications of Post Modernist architecture are simply dandyish afterthoughts or Mannerist jokes on architecture, and it was difficult for many to comprehend the point of it, particularly when public money was being spent, but the fact remains that over the past 30 years Post Modernism has provided some stunning visual effects. In many cases the attitude seems to be to set up one sort of geometric structure and then superimpose another structure on it that is consciously meant to clash. Sometimes the results are quite spectacular.

Sustainable

The earliest dwellings seen in the Mediterranean area and the Fertile Crescent were built with passive solar energy and wind in mind. The first permanent houses were large openings in the side of cliffs. The caves dug out by early troglodytes were facing south so that the cave would be heated during the cold winter months. The stone would absorb the sun's heat during the day and maintain much of it throughout the night. During the summer deciduous trees grown on the south side of the cave would have provided shade from the hot sun. Breezes coming up from the valleys would have helped in the cooling process. Water conservation was also an issue. Troughs for rainwater and large storage tanks are found in buildings up to 5000 years old.

Most farmsteads throughout Europe and North America were similarly placed. The large windows would be on the south side and deciduous trees would be planted to provide shade in summer.

The Industrial Revolution and the rapid advancements in technology over the 19th and 20th centuries somehow allowed man to forget the good building practices of thousands of years. The idea of buildings being in harmony with the environment was thought to be naive, even counter-culture. By 1950, western architecture had become so completely removed from the natural world that north arrows are not even found on most drawings. Surveys and housing developments were situated to provide maximum return on investment for the developer with no consideration of the home owner's commitments to power usage or water conservation. Now, in the twenty-first century, most

 

developments and many large buildings are still being constructed in the 1950s manner. Large buildings are not much better. But things are changing.

Prior to 1970, very little consideration was given to either the cost or the impact of gas and electric power. In Europe, on demand water heating and contained heating were standard practices due to the hardships of the early 20th century. In North America no thought was given to energy consumption at all. The oil crisis of the 1970s got people's attention. Suddenly people were confronted with the possibility of having to pay much more than they had traditionally paid, and designers and architects started to consider what steps could be taken to cut down on energy consumption. A small group of people in those years were also studying the effects of energy consumption on the planet. The 1970s predictions for global warming and pollution are chillingly accurate. The smart people started taking some action. By 1990, most intelligent architects had started designing socially responsible buildings that would be less expensive in the long run.

By the twenty-first century, sustainable design had moved from the sidelines to the mainstream. Governments and institutional buildings had become largely "green" due to pressure from the public. Private developers are now beginning to see that there is a measurable market advantage in being perceived to be supporting sustainable architecture, and they are also incorporating green principles in their designs, however slowly. Green building principles are a part of every responsible design program in colleges and universities, and architects and engineers receive sustainable design training as part of their professional development programs.

Several independent rating systems have been implemented in Europe and North America. The British Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) was conceived in Britain in the 1990s and adapted in parts of North America shortly thereafter. The LEED Green Building Rating System rating system has been much more successful in North America. It is a measurable and verifiable tool used by designers and architects to rate the performance of buildings with regard to sustainable site design, water and energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality. The LEED rating system sets the standard for sustainable design and also offers platinum, gold, and silver awards for excellence in design. This provides the competitive edge needed to push the private sector towards accepting the initially higher cost of buildings for the long term gain in lower energy costs and more socially conscious construction.

I.M.Pei

 

I.M. Pei

photo by Grufnik

Louvrepyramid

Pei Paris

I.M. Pei

 

Pei Boston

I.M. Pei

 

Hancock Building Boston

I.M. Pei

 

Pei refelcting Richardson

 

Arthur Erickson (1924 - )

 

http://www.arthurerickson.com/building.html

 

Canadian Embassy 1962

 

Erickson

Frank Gehry (1929 - )

 

 

 

Bilbao Guggenheim
Frank Gehry 1997

The building has a steel frame with titanium sheathing. The administrative offices are brick. Many large windows add light in unexpected places. A large sculpture of a spider greets pedestrians along the river side.

Frank Gehry

Bilbao Guggenheim
Frank Gehry 1997

Gehry's work is Post-Modern. The shapes seem to be thrust together in space creating, in this case, the feeling of being under water.

Frank Gehry

Bilbao Guggenheim
Frank Gehry 1997

Water is used to good effect in reflecting pools.

 

Frank Gehry

Pritsker Bandshell Frank Gehry 2004

Once they see the Guggenheim in Bilbao, every city planning group must have one. This extraordinary design is a bandshell.

Frank Gehry

Pritzker Bandshell Front

 

 

 

Pritzker Bandshell

Frank Gehry Art Gallery of Ontario

The AGO has had as many face lifts as Joan Rivers. The first exhibitions were held in a Georgian style building, the Grange, an 1817 property willed to the city in 1910. The original building is still found on the south facade of the AGO.

By 1919, new galleries were built in the then-current Beaux-Arts style by Pearson and Darling. Various new wings and galleries were added, bit by bit, generally in the style of the time. The last gallery was the Post-Modernist wing finished in 1992 by Barton Myers and Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects (KPMB).

 

AGO

Frank Gehry AGO

Critics of Post-Modern designs often said that the appeal of these buildings would be short lived. This proved to be the case for the AGO. In 2004, Toronto born Frank Gehry was coaxed back to Canada to work on a revitalization project called Transformation AGO which virtually eliminated the Postmodern entrance.

Gehry's signature material is titanium, as can be seen in the Bilbao in Spain, the Pritzker Concert hall in Chicago, the Disney Concert Hall, and a variety of other buildings.

The blue Titanium provides a wonderful complement to the white and gray of winter, but is even more magnificent contrasting with the orange and gold of the fall leaves on the trees in the Grange Park.

The main design feature of the AGO is the magnificent staircase that winds in and around, and outside the main building. From the outside, the staircase looks as if it is oozing out of a tear in the metal, pushed out, like so much tooth paste. From the inside, the visitors have a spectacular view of the surrounding park and downtown core buildings.

AGO Staircase

Inside the staircase looking out.

Frank Gehry AGO

On the inside, the curving shape is similar, but the material is a sensuous golden wood. Escaping from the roof and flowing into the round-headed arches of the Renaissance style gallery, the staircase provides a visual focus as well as an interesting ascent from one floor to the next.

The mastery of this design is in the way it weaves in and out of the existing building, uniting the once disparate galleries into a whole. Out of one gallery, into the next, opening up views in each direction, but keeping a flow. This flow is found in ramps and passageways from the main entrance right through the building.

AGO Staircase

Staircase flowing like a ribbon of toothpaste into the Classical gallery

Frank Gehry AGO

Visitors are lead through the gallery in twists and curves, Walking through spaces that, ten years ago, would have been inaccessable.

Here the stairway leading up goes through the top of a Renaissance arch.

AGO Stair Inside

Staircase up.

Frank Gehry AGO

The staircase provides an opportunity for the visitor to move around the gallery and get acquainted with the different floors. But the actual viewing space part of the addition, it is an art gallery after all, is the large Galleria Italia on the Dundas Street facade.

Sitting in the galleria you get the feeling you are in a very large ship. The ribs supporting the glass roof are curved like a ship's bow, The room is certainly organic, few straight lines, everything opening up to the north - the constant light preferred by painters.

AGO Upper Lobby

Galleria Italia

 

Norman Foster

 

 

 

Norman Foster - Cologne

This was one of the first green buildings in Europe.

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Fosterino

The city of Bilbao commissioned Foster to design the entranceways to their subway system. these are affectionately refered to as Fosterinos.

Fosterino

Norman Foster - Cologne

 

 

 

Fosterino Inside

Norman Foster - Gherkin

 

 

 

Gherkin

Norman Foster - Gherkin

 

 

 

Gherkin Diagrid

Norman Foster - London

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Norman Foster - London

 

 

 

London

London City Hall
Norman Foster 2002

"it expresses the transparency and accessibility of the democratic process and demonstrates the potential for a sustainable, virtually non-polluting public building."


http://www.fosterandpartners.com

London City Hall

London City Hall
Norman Foster

This is

London City Hall

Norman Foster - Nimes

This was one of the first green buildings in Europe.

 

 

Norman Foster Nimes

Norman Foster - Nimes

This was one of the first greenbuildings in Europe.

 

 

Nimes

Leslie L. Dan Pharmacy Building 2006

Moffat Kinoshita Architects in co-operation with Foster and partners.

Part of the University of Toronto, the Faculty of Pharmacy on College Street provides state-of-the-art facilities for more than 1000 undergraduate and postgraduate students. The facility boasts teaching laboratories, a new student services centre, faculty and support staff offices, and a virtual doubling of the pharmacy student body. It is the largest pharmacy faculty in Canada.

 



Neo-Classical

Dublin

Moffat research needed.

 



Neo-Classical

 

Dubai and the rest of the World

 

 

 

Chicago 1984

150 North Michigan A.Epstein and Sons

1984

Half Timber

OCAD 2004 - to be continued

This brilliant new addition, instead of adding to the existing building, simply has it floating above it. The Sharp Centre for Design, by acclaimed British Architect Will Alsop, of Alsop Architects, in a joint venture with Toronto-based Robbie/Young + Wright Architects Inc, was completed in September 2004.

Neo-Classical

The Sail

This is a brilliant use of a non-structural material to engulf a standard building core. The rectangular core of the building has an additional partial building envelope separate from the structure of the building, used to protect part of the building from environmental factors. The shape of the building and the use of these materials is radically imaginative.

forms a visual entity that is extremely pleasing and

Frank Gehry

Pritzker Bandshell Front

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

The Sail

Seen from the marine bar at the Jumerah Beach Hotel, the Sail changes colour with accent lighting all night.

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Downtown Dubai

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Dubai

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Dubai

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Dubai

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Dubai

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Dubai

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Dubai

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Dubai

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Communications Building Dubai

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Amsterdam - residence

 

 

 

Art Moderne Lobby

Movies

 

 

Books

Boorstin, Daniel J., The Creators, Vintage Books, New York, 1993

 

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