English translations

The issue of architeciure today

(Page 6)

Architecture is changing today, and change is part of the philosophy of a new architecture. Tendencies which have been there from the beginning, but somewhat simmering, are now appearing on the surface with an accelerated speed and vigor. It is particularly interesting to see which of these changes are due to moody or fashionable terms, and which ones are due to developments of a creative and long-term drive behind our work.

Is there such a thing as a long-term direction ?

I believe there is,—with all allowances for individual waves, for the ups and downs, rights and lefts, forwards and backwards of thoughts and with allowances for our errors and for our weak hours,—our many desperate hours about progress. Still, I believe in progress. I am convinced that a factory worker of today with his five-day week and seven-hour day, with his automobile or bicycle, or bus, or even subway, with his children in schools, and with his bathroom, has better tools for happiness than a factory worker of two hundred or two thousand years ago. He probably does not know yet how to use those tools, to full advantage.

He may yet have to learn how to balance and coordinate the achievements of progress.

But in any case, the availability of the components is already a positive factor.

We are apt to romanticize the past periods.

We are apt to forget that mass production and a monotonous rhythm was a part of production in those days too, and much harder on the human spirit and body than it is today. Long before the invention of the Taylor System, a great part of the work which went into Greek temples, Roman roads, medieval cathedrals, Renaissance palaces and Chippendale furniture was tedious, monotonous and specialized mass production too. No beauty treatment of decoration or Architectural style can make a man prefer an old fashioned outhouse to his modern bathroom. Especially not, if this modern bathroom is beautiful, which, I admit, it not always is.

It is said that if a chair is beautiful it is also comfortable. This is just as questionable as to say : if it is comfortable, it is also beautiful. Speaking of the specific, I think that the chair of Mies Van der Rohe is a rather comfortable chair to begin with, and because it is beautifully designed too, it gains our enthusiasm and probably a less critical appreciation than it would otherwise.

But no beauty can make us forget that man needs something to sit on, and that he needs to sit comfortably, and that this something is the instrument which we call a chair.

In other terms, we should not create confusion in basic premises. I don’t believe such confusion will promote a better Architecture, or even another great style. If we assume, with good reason, that our most revealing, most important communications are through the eyes, let us not deny our other senses.

Similarly, we should not ram the walls of modern architecture in 1961 by denouncing its anti-symmetrical tendencies. These flourished a good thirty-five years ago : it is true that the revolutionary period of modern architecture, the Twenties, was against symmetry. Since then this has not been true, and already in the early Thirties, the notion of asymmetry at any price was considered a matter of the past. We referred then to the inherent symmetry of all elemental and geometric forms and referred to the fact that the center of a building is its most important zone because it is in equal distance from either of its ends. Old fashioned symmetry as a formal principle of composition was destroyed in the Twenties; and freedom to compose a building in a symmetrical or asymmetrical way, according to sense and to specific reasons, was established in the early Thirties. It is still a valid freedom in the present movement of Architecture.

Is individualism a priori against order or discipline? Do these two notions exclude each other? I do not believe so.

First, there is the order of an individuai, whether it serves monotonous routine in one case, or creative mastery in the other.

And second, 1 feel that only where individualism can be unified with discipline, may we expect real growth. It would be foolish, even unthinkable, as well as physically impossible to design each building of a city as a completely individual composition.

It makes good sense to find for similar problems similar solutions ; and there is certainly not a great deal of difference between the problems of one 1961 New York office and another 1961 office,—or between the problems of one 1961 eight-room house and another 1961 eight-room house of the same income class. There are variations, there are nuances, there are differences in character of owners and users, sites and local technology; but there is also a dominant general denominator in the synonymous solutions of each problem, at least to that degree that there are relatively few basically different real solutions possible and not one million. The individuality inherent in similar problems is, roughly speaking, non-existant.

Architecture has to create forms which stand repetition.

Probably the personality of the architect and not that of the user, probably his ambition and not that of Architecture, is the one which strives for individual expression. It seems that here we are nearer to the meaning of the word in our context ; and that the individual search of the designer, his experimentation with a seemingly solved problem is one of the factors of progress. The creative man acts where a need is neglected, whether physical or emotional. This experimentation is the controlling factor in the most disciplined work,—or it should be. The result may be commonplace, but in the process of conception, in the roots, it was at least tested.

Some architects, amongst them very capable ones, feel that today’s architecture needs a shot in the arm and that the glass wall is much overrated as a universal enclosure of space. I do not want to abandon some of my own children : the transparency of architecture; the interior space connected with the exterior one, visually speaking ; the flow of space through a structure and between its walls, the language of structural forces ; the physical and aesthetic sensations of a material which promotes these various phenomena: Glass. But there are many more potentialities in Architecture if it is not straight-jacketed into narrow rules.

There are also many human needs which our glass wall does not fulfill. We need a broader aspect of aesthetics. We have materials other than just metal and glass.

And we have needs other than just floating in space. The vocabulary of Architecture has to be considerably enlarged; the front of our work has to be widened, and very profoundly so. The drop of water which moves through space is broad in front and narrows towards the rear.

That a greater number of tendencies are emphasized today,—inventiveness, structure, plastic modulation, preoccupation with scale, and the all-is-permissible-to-thegenius tendency,—is partly due to the original emphasis of modern architecture on freedom, mainly on freedom from traditional precedence. The initial liberation process still has an active momentum which is actually increasing now as a reaction to that large section of "successful” modern architecture of a more and more narrowing path and demonstrating a discipline which excludes experimentation ; a rather tyrannic discipline, losing relation to true progress, to visual and human needs.

It should not worry us that a tendency towards chaos seems to appear in some quarters of Architecture; another quarter will see to it that the baby is not poured out with the bath. Forty years ago when I heard the first lecture about a not yet born modern architecture and an already born modern art I heard the word chaos, and I have heard it a hundred times since. Art critics in the days of the archaic Greeks already talked about chaos when their sculptors began to separate the arms of a figure from the torso, I am sure. Nothing is easier than to discover chaos everywhere and to have a bit of "Weltschmerz” about this. It is part of the cosmos; it is everywhere.

Genesis is a continuous thing; it is still going on.

The drop form as a condition of true progress applies not only to aesthetic problems. It is not only philosophy. There are many physical realities which can be quoted here, functional and structural difficulties. To mention one: the glass and panel façades of our office buildings, some of them quite beautiful, and some of them technically quite advanced, have, as a rule, no structural supports in the plane of the façade. According to one of our modern dogmas these are true curtain walls, rather independent from the vertical structure of the building which is at some distance behind the façade. All well and good if the office building has open spaces with no partitions. But if it is a modular type of building which has to be


sub-divided in varying ways, such interior columns are very much in the way. From many points of view, one comes to the conclusion that in a certain type of building the columns should not be apart from the façade inside or outside, but in the plane of the façade itself.

Functionalism? Should the needs and functions of this building rule the façades of architecture ? Whether so or not, these sober thoughts, discredited as they may be in these days of freestyle wrestling of architectural forms and structural acrobatics, may launch us into new thoughts and into a changed aesthetic, into further individual research, and, perhaps, into a more valid expression.

Individual expression, whether the result of analytical and functional approach or whether the result of imagination or rebellion, will have to follow the axial movement of architecture to be of value. I welcome these individual adventures as laboratory experiments, visual, technical, or social ones, for a better architecture, for an architecture which moves forward,—and this is the point at which individualism and discipline are one and the same.

Do we need or want a “style”? I don't believe we do; and even if our work occasionally appears to be a purely formal discipline, our aim at the conception of the design and in the process was not the creation of such a style.

A style of architecture is usually associated with a recognizable treatment, with form motifs which are independent from attitude, which are applied to house, store, church or factory in a recognizably similar way.

There probably couldn't be a more telling demonstration of this than Ernest Flagg's massive palazzo on Bleeker Street, which was built as a poorhouse, with rooms of about 5x7 feet, but with a grand stair marble flooring, panelled library, and monumental Renaissance façade.

Of course, the individual architect has his own preferred language, and he is subject to connecting influences and imitative overall forms. But architecture should set its aim, and this aim should be the bestpossible solution for each problem, not only as to aesthetics, not only as to functions, not only as to structural logic and inventiveness, not only as to sensitivity towards materials, as to human and social needs, but as a synthesis of all these aspects. Each of them will affect the other.

When we try to find the purest and most definite form of our aesthetic reflexions, we at the same time try to find the most definite form for structural conception. And it is not quite justified to speak of one of the components of architecture without speaking of the others. Here is the reason architectural criticism is so difficult,—it needs an overall and creative judgment in balance.

While I do not agree with a modern style, in a general sense, I think that caracteristic forms for each species of building are developing. Office buildings will probably develop to an architecture rather different from that of our apartment buildings or hospitals, or theaters, or laboratories. The landscape of our towns will be less dominated by an overall “motif”,—except that similar kinds of buildings will be combined

to continuous patterns,—see San Marco in Venice, or Rue de Rivoli in Paris.

It should be emphasized that functional needs are not only physical, but also human and spiritual. The house is not a “machine for living”, or the word machine must be interpreted much too remote from its recognized meaning.

While a factory may be to a large degree a production belt, a scientist's laboratory is not. While we may expect a warehouse to be most functional in an architectural sense, we should also say that the function of a church or a museum should extend beyond “function”. It is obvious that the thousand offices of a large administration will by their very nature be similar (their individuality, if any, is left to their users) ; while a chapel on a mountain top will by its very nature and "function” be an independent expression.

Individuality and discipline are not opposites in architecture. They are complementing traits of the same direction, perhaps of the same personality, perhaps of the same work.

Only a synthesis of the opposites, individuality and discipline, lends our thoughts a direction which moves forward in balance: otherwise one totters and reels from one side to the other, replacing one mask of architectural style with the mask of another.

It seems that architecture should have a rather universal foundation. Man comes and goes, the building, the street, the town remains. To build is, in final appraisal, not a role to play, not a vote to take, not an opinion ; it is a passion, basic... the bread we eat.

As far as the issue in architecture is concerned, it surely is beyond pure form, beyond just human sentiment, beyond just the product on the market.

Perhaps the previous sentences gave some inkling of my own point of view. Shall we attempt to condense the issue into one phrase? The art of space? The expression of modern technology? A glass-brick-steel diagram of necessities? Sculpture with a function? A structure built on economics and logic? An opportunity for brutalism, new or old ? The elegance of l’art pour I 'art ?

Frozen music? The atavistic instinct to be hidden? The reincarnation of historic images? A physical projection of social forces?

In the agony of search for a precise formulation of this issue in Architecture, once, quite a few years ago, I made my first and only poem of a sort : Colors which you can hear with ears ; Sounds to see with eyes ; The void you touch with your elbows ; The taste of space on your tongue ; The fragrance of dimensions The juice of stone.

Marcel Breuer

Architecture beyond the eye


How quickly can a photographer expose— and then lay before our eyes—a picture which becomes to us a substitute experience, not possibly to be communicated “even in ten thousand words”, as the Chinese say. And yet architecture can never be fully photographed. Its space-time is the physiological

space-time measured by moving limbs, and conducting nerves; and glands are secreting, activated and activating all the time, every moment one is in a building or faces it.

And then, architecture stands always not in a vacuum, but in a historical or geographical landscape, to be experienced together with it in tight context of a great deal of associations. None of this can be really photographed. It is somewhat like seeing quite real lions, elephants and giraffes—ordinarily known only from picture books—break out of the bushes, in front of our automobile, when one travels through "Kruger Park”, South Africa. Is it possible? Real Lions!

Here they are ! Suddenly it is clear again that no photograph can ever touch, let alone substitute for, the complex stimulation when we are faced with reality—the real thing. It makes us sway, sweat, feel happy or depressed and fearful or carefree.

And then reflective self-stimulation goes on.

At any rate, architecture is not only taken in by the eye ; far from it. The man made scene is always within a dynamic frame of nature, under changing clouds which the sun colors before it rises to run through the day, and have all things cast lengthened and shortened shadows. But then there, too, are scents and thermal impacts in the breeze of moving air, and sounds and noise reverberating or muffled.

Memories and ideas, hopes, happiness and anxieties or irritations adhere to the sensations which are modified and arranged in architecture, hang on it,—all of this will, in ever new and sometimes repetitive wrinkles, be attached to a life scene,—and so much of it is way beyond the scope of a photograph.

But, before even speaking of associations of every optical vista and its long reverberating emotive powers—Architecture is, we have already hinted at it, to start with, taken in by so many more senses than the five known to our grandfathers. We have millions of portals through which architectural composition can enter into us, and to appreciate it all we must know our organic being.

Leonardo da Vinci would have loved to thumb through the ninety-eight thousand first rate research reports on human biology, published only last year, between New York and Moscow. He was wonderfully curious.

Instead of speculating about life, about growing, maturing, withering and aging,— he would inquire.

He is now standing with his flying machine before the new airport of Rome. There is his statue—I photographed it, together with a big black arrow, a traffic sign, “Speed Limit 15 Miles", guiding a million cars a month to the parking area behind Leonardo.

But, he was not just a technologist inventer alone, and his flying machine is awfully superseded now. He was a humanist and naturalist rolled in one, when he sat in the ospedale of Santa Maria Novella in Forence, on the bed with the centenarian he interviewed about how he had lived so long.

Then, when the old man tipped over and died on the bed, the inquiry did not stop,— Leonardo wanted to known how a man could die “so sweetly” without much ado. He at once opened his body and drew and diagnosed the occlusion of the withered coronary. In his fusion of natural science with man as a measure and center of inquiry, he

is exemplary in midst of our specialistics and cleavages. A fullfledged architect must be a humanist, scientifically underbuilt like that artist was, and on present terms.

Of course, the soul of man, that responds to architecture, cannot be localized. This would not be science of this day. It does not sit in the heart, the spleen, the brain— and surely not alone in the young “frontal lobe”, the most recent addition to the brain where concepts and numbers are bred, strategically treated and shuffled. Here is perhaps where our “numerology of statistics" sits, the big figures of Dollars and Cents, Deutsche Marks, Rubels and Rupees.

Of course, millions of kilowatts and tons of square meters of floor area of housing, are very necessary, here, there and everywhere, while we proceed to populate the planet with ten billion people or more may be by the end of the century or a decade or two later.

It may be a very important phase of architectural progress to accommodate man in his ever greater masses and densities. But an architect, more loving and emphatic than just curious and clever, must continue to also individually accommodate sensitive man, after he has left paradise, and his most ancient physical milieu : nature. The denser packed together, the more his biology must be studied and subtly served. And biological individuality through a life span is very much part of what has to be regarded.

Each of us has dwelt nine months with himself alone and his own miraculous growing, in the best place on earth, his own mother's body.

It was a place admirably climate-controlled, even-tempered ; we were then floating gently without having our foot-soles pressed by gravity down on to hard floors. No upholstered chair has later done so well by us, as has this first floating. Sometimes a longing for it comes back to us in our dreams.

And it was so quiet; we heard only muffled the machinegun clatter of rushing motorcycles, the screeching brakes and the clash of automobiles, followed by the heated argument of their drivers. And our embryonic eyes were yet sweetly, peacefully, closed and not bothered by that other clash of colored neon signs.

Yes, it is quite a job to continue the fine accommodation, once in the maternity hospital we are born and delivered right into the hands of the architect. We open our young eyes for the first time, more eager than kittens,—who can wait a few days after birth.

And now the hospital nurse lays us in a crib under a nationally advertised "luminaire”, specified for hospital infant nurseries. Here we lie and stare into the light and listen to forty baby colleagues yelling their heads off. No other respectable mammal throws such a big litter into one nest.

But, why do they all yell ? Is it because they are „taken up” to be changed out of wet diapers, which means a “thermal shock” when the moisture on their sensitive skins evaporates? Never “in utero” have they experienced such horrible sudden temperature drops,—no little chick has ever broken out his egg-shell but into a feathered shockproof nest—with medicines stinking the air full.

Yes, the architect, and after him the city

planner—or is this one perhaps the one before the other ?—have together quite a job to continueto accommodate mankind.They are “applied naturalists”, prophylaxists, potentially profiting much from it how today, long after Aristotle, and better than he, one must known man, to serve him. Of course, he is the measure of all ourthings, Protagoras was right. Technology “per se”, traffic humming wheels “per se”, is transcendental ; it surely is not really realistic.

Man to all his humming wheels and to all of us must be an “entity”, not a mechanistically divided department store. No, his soul is not separated from his body, the problem is psychosomatic, or we misunderstand it.

No, his soul does not “sit" anywhere, not in the frontal lobe of the brain, but also not just in the occipital lobe, where vision is demonstrably first digested and made to "mean" something to us. Architecture is digested all over.

Surely, demarcation of form and shape, color, black, grey and brightness, distance and spacing,—a thousand things come from the eye sockets to that “department” in the rear brain, but this is only a smallish part of what happens to us, in front and within architecture, as we always have felt and experienced it, long before photography was invented and pictures, ratherthan buildings, are now being discussed.

My father, son of a physician who died in service more than a hundred years ago, was, by his widowed mother, given into apprenticeship to a caster of bronze bells. When I myself was four and once was sitting on his lap, my dad impressed me for a lifetime by telling me stories of bell casting. The cowherders were the customers of the shop and they were difficult customers. They had such fine ears, and they wanted the bells of the lead-cows neatly harmonized when they sounded over the evening meadows and when entering the village.

Now the sound and pitch of a beli naturally depended on its form, visible enough and shapely, pleasing to the eye, to be moulded well by craftmanship. But, pitch and sound were also due to its weight. How heavy the bell was one could notice by inner muscle senses when one tried and lifted it. The specific and total weight in turn was naturally due to the material, a certain alloy. It had a coloran apprentice learned to distinguish by a glance. Color, sound, weight and form, all are molten into one, inseparable.

Here now was what I never forgot: impressions from a lot of senses, a grand medley of information taken in by our many senses like if we chew, tonguetouch, taste and smell a bite of food, melt together. All this in ultimate fusion, activates the “intellect” and emotion, never just one or the other.

Shape, resiliency, tiny sounds, smell, temperature and the texture of a surface, all become one appealing or a repelling experience.

This holds true also and especially for architecture around us. But, architecture is consumed not in any static position, like perhaps that of a camera, screwed to a tripod. We are not fixed and actually lured by the designer into motion, in fact whole patterns of motion. We perform as the architect stimulates us to do. We lift our head, turn our eyes and meanwhile walk down the nave,

follow it to the far and axially conspicious altar piece of that admired cathedral. Our steps on the pavement reverberate from masonry walls and vaults, which are acoustically illuminated by chanting and by organ play, just as they are optically illuminated by candles. The same cathedral interior imitated on a Hollywood studio lot, made of prestboard nailed over a wooden frame, may look quite like the original, but acoustically it is dark and dead—far from true to life.

While we walk through an architectural scene, “Parallactic” shifts keep near-by columns and arches moving fast, make distant ones move slowly. This is a most telling space indicator and experience.

Architecture came here to life through our locomotion, our turnings and bending backward.

But, when we watch a painted out barocco ceiling by Balthazar Neumann or Fischer von Erlach with our head turned up, while we go promenading, the effect becomes most mysterious, almost intoxicating, by what befogs our judgment of space and, at the same time, deeply penetrates our dizzy being, it is amazing how much architects and their fellow artists knew and worked on with care long before we came. We have learned most we now care for, too lopsidedly, just from photographs. This is our trouble. They are brought to us from distant places. We love that, but in turn we loose immediate stimulation. We have in our rush come to depend on impoverishing and impoverished second-hand capsuled for “canned” sensefood, handed down from the magazine rack and library shelf.

And how often can we truly experience from pictures a building in its setting, in its microclimate, in its subtle relations to nature, with foliage swaying in the breeze,—which all has been recaptured for us, inhabitants of interiors, by the invention of crystal clear transparent enclosures of glass.

These pictures we must, if we can, supplement by our memories,—“mneme" is these days the newest terminus technique. Once it was the goddess of memory. A million senses, nerves, muscles, all our organic cells, are divinely memory laden,—and the architect must know it, care for them.

How can one illustrate such things between the covers of a book?

If you want to photograph an interior with a view window into the most magnificent landscape, you can try to do it with a wide angle lens, to see at the same time also the interior from which you enjoy that panorama. But, then this panorama itself is at once reduced to a tiny scale,—the Alps, over the Lago di Como, or the Vesuvius, look just like molehills, compared with an armchair in the foreground.

In despair you turn to a narrow angle lens and photograph again. Now you have just a landscape picture with no synopsis of an interior, framing the pleasure. The chair at the window had to be left out. You might just as well be altogether outdoors. The architecture does no longer count together with the outer scene. There is no reference from one to the other, nor any reference comparable with that you have in your soul, every second !

Architecture well composed into the landscape does count so much. It is a magic


“psychotope", a soulanchorage place, with an outlook on the universe. And the universe we can love and cherish best from a very human vantage point.

Any building built by man, a temple to worship, a kindergarten, a school to learn, a dwelling to live in, must be felt to remain a part of the dynamic universal scene. This scene of nature has for millions of years been the matrix moulding organic beings such as we are ourselves. We will never escape it nor do we even want to escape.

Our ears to hear, our eyes to see, are the same as they were a hundred thousand years ago. We still shiver the same way when we feel cold and sweat when it is sultry and our hearts and pulses must keep beating the same rhythm, even if we are shot in a rocket to the moon. There is nothing modish about it, but on the contrary, to make us respond happily, architecture, a long range investment, always has had to it atouch of eternity.

I have striven for it these last forty years, not to have my clients frustrated and disappointed by obsolescence. I have kept my respect for an architecture which is not easily dated and superseded.

Everything has a time dimension ; even a good joke told long enough becomes boring and tiresome. One may even become ashamed that once one laughed about it.

Architecture, I have always believed, is not static, but a dynamic performance. We must rather grow in it, because we are alive.

Living on with all vitality is what we come to buy when we lay on the table all the money we have saved, all the credit we can strain, and beg the architect to make us happy ever after,—or at least happier than we ever were before.

The would-be homeowner is the prototype of all clients who ever come to trust an architect. He of all is the most personal, the most “of flesh and blood". From him also the most of individual clinical experience can be gleaned by the young architect. It can be gained also by the old practitioner who has worked so long with “boards of directors", “committees”, city councils, public works officers and politicians.

It is for this refreshing reason that i have— inmidst of planning towns and university campuses, municipal theaters and embassies, insurance companies and swim stadiums :—in spite of losing funds and sustenance—always again and again returned to the individual domestic project.

I long to see human faces, moved and smiling for their personal sake, explain their personal fears and hopes.

Evidently a dentist, too, has to look into an individual open mouth, see individually a tooth inmidst its setting, examine it, file an individual hole in it and ask “does it hurt?”.

A personal voice will answer. He diagnoses and solves a problem as a healer and a conservator. No one could be more a conservator, a healer and a benefactor of fellowbeings than the one who builds the setting for all their activities and their leisure.

If he is called to a zoo and builds a cage for a polar bear, he must first know polar bears —and he must even love polar bears.

Empathy, sympathy and insight all will make him serve endearingly also man, woman and child—the generation of tomorrow, which our eyes cannot yet behold. Richard Neutra

New Look in Embassies

(Page 32)

The United States is currently engaged in a long-range embassy-building program in more than thirty countries. The new embassies are noteworthy because they themselves are good ambassadors, representing the United States while respecting the host countries’ architectural traditions.

The Department of State directs the program, with the assistance of an Advisory Panel of outstanding architects and diplomats. The Panel has given commissions to such internationally-known American architects as Walter Gropius, Richard Neutra, Eero Saarinen, Jose Luis Sert and Edward Stone, as well as to several younger men.

The Panel requires each architect to visit the embassy site and invites them “to give serious study to local conditions, to understand and sympathize with local customs and people, and to grasp the historical meaning of the particular environment in which the new building must be set.” These visits give architects the opportunity to look for design ideas in every expression of the local culture.

Edward Stone went to the Taj Mahal for inspiration before designing the Embassy at New Delhi, then studied Indian fabrics for detail and color. An African chieftain's house suggested to Chicago architect Harry Weese the motif for the embassy at Accra.

While staying in Ghana, Weese saw a picture of the house and copied the spear-like mud finials in the lines of the columns supporting the Embassy platform and roof.

John Carl Warnecke, architect of the U.S.

Embassy in Bangkok, travelled extensively in the Far East to study Asian art forms.

While visiting in Bangkok, he witnessed an ancient Thai eremony. He tells how all the participants were given baskets filled with jasmine, wild orchids and gardenias —a candle and an incense stick in the center of each one. They sent the baskets drifting slowly down the klong, or canal, which was bright with the reflection of the full moon.

This ceremony so impressed Warnecke that he tried to re-create its mood in his design for a structure which seems to float upon the surface of a lotus-shaped lake.

On-the-spot research has not only produced ideas, it has also insured that the buildings will blend harmoniously with their surroundings. Francis Lethbridge, of the Washington firm of Keyes, Lethbridgeand Condon,found that color was one key to a successful relationship between the Embassy and its neighborhood. He planned an office building for Lima, Peru, in tones which echo the warm, muted earth colors of the city and surrounding desert.

Eero Saarinen was faced with the problem of producing a contemporary design which would harmonize with the Georgian spirit of London's Grosvenor Square. He solved it with a grille-work facade of pre-cast concrete frames which hook into the concrete floor.

In rhythm, symmetry and scale, the facade relates to the Eighteenth Century; in forthright expression of structure, it follows the precepts of modern architecture. The London “Times” has called it “a welcome acquisition to the rapidly changing face of Mayfair.” While drawing inspiration from local traditions, the architects have not allowed themselves to be bound by them. Walter Gropius, in designing the embassy in Athens, was conscious of this possible pitfall. He writes, “Built in Athens on the slope of the Lykabettos Mountain, the building must abide by the classical spiritus loci, however expressed in a contemporary architectural vocabulary. In spite of using the ancient form of a patio plan and rows of structural columns for the exterior as well as interior elevations, the building elements themselves are contemporary in character.” Richard Neutra, who is designing the Embassy in Karachi, returned from Pakistan with the conviction that an architect could best show his true appreciation of a new country with “the most contemporary design he was capable of... Nevertheless,” he continues, “we strove for shapes which at least to us, who admire the Orient, would have associative and sentimental ties with the region...

The vaulting... and the whiteness of the heat-reflecting building under the blue sky...

add to the Islamic flavor.” The commissioning of official buildings always presents problems. Happily, the U.S.

Department of State has proved to be a stimulating client. By giving the architects maximum freedom, it has sponsored buildings which represent the gamut of presentday opinions about architecture. Neutra’s embassy expresses his belief in functional design. For Kobe, Detroit architect Minoru Yamasaki has designed a consulate which expresses his conviction that architects must be concerned with beauty for beauty's sake.

He gave the buildings and grounds the visual unity which marks the best in Japanese architecture. The eye travels through corridors across a slatted deck to the water and shrubbery of the garden created by Japanese landscape artist Ken Nakajima. Natural textures contrast with the translucent walls and crisp bronze accents of the office building.

By insisting that embassy architects become familiar with the local idiom, the Department of State has become an indirect benefactor of American architecture. Building design in the United States has already been enriched by the ideas which these architects have brought back with them. Americans can expect to see more new architectural beauty around them, beauty which stems from many cultural traditions.

Jean Tschumi

(1904-1962) (Page 44)

In 1934 Jean Tschumi opened his office in Paris, where he had studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. After several years of work on interior design, Jean Tschumi approached the problems of city planning.

In 1937 he received a honorary reward for a study of underground traffic in Paris.

He entered for several competitions, gave some lectures, and wrote articles devoted to city planning. At the age of 44, one can say that this architect had as yet built nothing.

However in building the Sandoz laboratories at Orléans (1949-1952), Tschumi revealed himself to be an architect of considerable stature—strongly influenced by Perret. The conception is clear, the composition clas sical, the materials are used logically, the form expresses the function.

The building of the “Mutuelle Vaudolse Accidents" in Lausanne confirmed the qualities shown in Orléans, showing yet more freedom and elegance. The relation to the site, and the inclusion of mature trees in the composition were meticulously studied.

It was in 1951 that Jean Tschumi won first prize in the competition forthe "Mutuelle Vaudoise Accidents”. A year later, again after a competition, he was entrusted with the "Hôpital Suisse de Paris".

But it is the Nestlé building in Vevey that confirmed Jean Tschumi as one of the leading architects of his time. He strove for perfection, and not just originality.

Although considering plastic espression to be essential, he never obtained it at the expense of function. With the Nestlé building, Jean Tschumi attained full maturity. Here again, he was served by a magnificent site, but in no way does this diminish the merit ot an architect who knew how to make full use of all potentials.

1960 was a happy year for Jean Tschumi.

He was awarded the International Reynolds Metal Prize (25.000 $) for his building at Vevey, and obtained 1st prize in the international competition organized by the World Health Organization for the design of a new headquarters building.

It was in his prime, at the height of his success that Jean Tschumi left us. Besides the W.H.O. building several other projects were under way: the most important probably being the building of the S.O.P.A.D.

in Paris, and the famous tower of Lausanne which revealed Jean Tschumi in a new light.

Jean Tschumi never forgot the great principle that he proclaimed at the International Union of Architects over which he presided from 1953 to 1957, that the first duty of the architect is his social duty, the consciousness of his responsibilities towards mankind and the city which he must serve.

Pierre Vago The Work of Le Ricolais

(Page 68)

For a long time Le Ricolais was a solitary man known only by his writings, and he found in the U.S.A.the cultural climate in which his work could develop experimentally. He deals essentially with the notion of form and space. But in order to understand his work, it is necessary to get rid of the approximation so familiar to architects, which though not decrying its value, belongs to an aesthetic where the intuitive notion of form is basic. As soon as the form becomes adventurous, the architect requires from the engineer a safety factor which is obtained by method that develop slowly, our industrial structures being tied down by economic considerations.

For the student of structures, much can be learned from nature and Le Ricolais carefully studied natural forms. His method of teaching is based on the use of models—the object being to build models of structures based or stretched steel wire which present a continuity of form. This shows a considerable advantage over assembled structures ni which joints are always expensive. An

example of its application : the building of an enormous radar aerial. Such work requires a high level of industrial development and can only be accomplished in such industrial nations as the U.S.A. where the science of steel is backed by a research programme.

The work of Le Ricolais questions the accepted theory of form and of space.

By means of a mere technical device this work arrives at the very essence of nature.

There is no doubt that there can be an aesthetic of structure, but it is secondary to research, and in no case the starting point. His is a completely new approach to architecture, and therein lies his genius.

Léon Prébandier The training of the architect

(Page 74)

The mission: In discussing the training of an architect, one supposes a proper understanding of his mission, that of moulding the environment of mankind.

This goes far: the preoccupations of the architect are necessarily closely allied to those of the engineer and town planner.

To arrive at a true result in the dynamic conditions of a rapidly developing world, one must first get to know man : his ideas, his aspirations, his spiritual and material needs.

The method: In spite of some evolution in the teaching of architecture, the influence of the “Bauhaus" of Dessau is still everywhere present. The fundamental thought of Gropius has not been surpassed.

A system: The aim of this study is not to revolutionize the teaching of architecture, but rather to clarify some processes of thought by viewing them in the light of renewed discussions on teaching methods in need of reform. Thus simplified, it would be possible to begin the debate straight away, and clarify the differences, the exceptions and the nuances of conception.

It is a means of facilitating and accelerating the exchange of ideas in comparative studies. The architect's final objective is homo sapiens (fig. 1) whose activities necessarily bear the stamp (fig. 2). The same preoccupations manifest themselves in the fields of architecture, town planning, and land development (fig. 3).

The timetable of the courses given by various schools gives an idea of the architectural tuition, without allowing any conclusions as to the fundamental character of the tuition which is communicated by the personality of the teachers (fig. 4).

Tripartition of the objectives: This concerns the predominance of objective; every section is intimately bound to the others. Their interdependence is total. At every stage of study, the results from one section are in some way determined by those of the two others (fig. 5).

General principles of discrimination: A reminder of some fundamental principles of tuition, discriminating: — the view of the whole and the search for detail ; — what belongs to the field of objective rational knowledge, and what belongs to the more subjective field of art ;

— what can be considered as practically stable, and what is movable, evolutionary.

Parallelism of the studies of town planning with those of architecture: The tuition of architecture concentrates today on the art of composition, which is a necessary condition for the training of the city planner.

Proposal of a solution for a standard academic organization: The school of city planning will be preferably integrated with the school of architecture. This latter is divided in three closely related sections: I. Institute for city planning and land development.

II. The studio of architecture.

III. Institute for the rationalization of the techniques in building and engineering.

Whatever the importance of the course of studies may be, the institutes will devote themselves mainly to the study of the following elements : I. Function: physical and spiritual needs of man in his environment.

II. Form : study of the architectural character, of space and volume.

III. Building: choice of materials and their correct combination for durability and economy.

Tearn work : Every studio chief in the school of architecture would be assisted by three specialized assistants, respectively attached to one of the three sections. This tripartite structure will give the students a clear idea of the sections of preoccupation involved in their formation.

After a distinct segregation of the elements, their synthesis will become clearer to the student, supported by the studio chief who will direct their co-ordination.

Mechanic workshops: The workshoplaboratories of the institute of research for the development of techniques are necessary for the creation of prototype building elements for the benefit of industry.

The students will have here the opportunity to live in close contact with qualified workers. The old "Werkhof” of the "Bauhaus" would thus be replaced.

Proposal of a scheme of standard training of town and country planning: This training is foreseen in three stages (fig. 6) : At the first stage of academic studies, general subjects will be taught, some specialization will be introduced but only in the two terms preceeding the diploma and depending on each student individually.

At the second stage, after a period of work in an office, postgraduate studies are organized by the respective institutes. At the third stage, the city planner finds himself confronted by real problems, and it is then that the qualities necessary for the leader of a team of specialists will assert themselves.

Vision of the future: The first condition of every development is faith in the future —hope in a better world, constant adaptation to increased knowledge and a social evolution aimed at a greater sense of justice.

Education: The formation of the student’s character exceeds the acquisition of a necessarily limited academic knowledge.

One must impress a sense of responsibility at the elaboration of the programme on the students themselves, with a view to developing their powers of criticism.

Praise of the power of creation: The art of composition, that marvellous ability, will prevail over all others and somehow dim them. Architectural creation consists of that search for the synthesis of function, space, form and construction. The school must teach the means of expression, not the way to express one's thoughts. In effect men are not so different from one another when they have pulled off the mask.

When everyone becomes himself again, we shall get closer to that unity in diversity for which the world is craving.

Paul Waltenspuhl The expansion of European cities (Page 80)

War damage, social advance, the drift of population to the towns and the increase in motor traffic have severely overtaxed the European town. Many theories have been formulated to meet the new demands, but few experiments on a sufficiently large scale have been undertaken.

As the construction of new towns and the re-construction of existing ones present problems of exceptional complexity, the inevitable first step was an effort to meet emergency needs—particularly in housing.

This approach tended to result in the creation of a conglomeration of unrelated groupings which hamper the attempts of an architect or planner to ameliorate the situation at a later date. With the expansion of existing cities, implying as it does the delicate but essential marriage between the traditional and the modern, there is a tendency to substitute new for old.

From this springs the defect in so many weil intentioned schemes : the lack of integration with the original town which has the inevitable paralyzing effects on every aspect of the towns function. Instead of regenerating old areas by interpenetration and continuity in the manner of the remarkable example of Rosetti in 16th century Ferrare, a purely peripheral connection of the old and new towns immediately tangible creates a rift with the past. The conception scale of the new part make it appear as some monstruous excrescence on the flank of the other.

The ability to create a feeling of urban space has yet to be achieved : what is needed is not a last minute corrective, but a fundamental reorientation.

André Corboz Renovation of town centers

(Page 100)

In this contrasting world, in spite of technical achievements and world wide communications, one half of the planet is starving while the other half crams itself.

In spite of the unlimited means at the disposal of town planners, no town has yet been conceived that has not eventually become uninhabitable.

Man’s condition remains, as in early days, one of misery and distress.

A thousand remedies are proposed by the most eminent of town planners. Bold innovators, they excite the passions by their promises of a more beautiful life in the future, when human needs will be satisfied, the community happier, and mankind better off. But events foil the most elaborate calculations.

It is precisely at the moment when town life is in jeopardy, that town planning has come into fashion. At a time when organized cities, in the medieval sense of the word, have ceased to exist (built up areas are spreading unchecked), mankind dreams of new capital cities rising in the desert by the will of some Demiurge.

Research concerning the problems of town planning on a world wide scale is due to the International Congress of Modern Architecture which took the initiative at the congress of Athens in 1933 of analysing a number of cities in their essential functions. Sert drew up his conclusions in a book entitled “Can our cities survive?”.

In order to regenerate our towns, the congress suggested the creation of new centers in the heart of the city. But there again, the medieval notion of the city forming a well-defined entity has misled the most persistant researchers. The ideal was the piazza San Marco in Venice, the market place in Priene, Pompei or Rome, the right angle public places of Vigevano, Salamanca or Nancy, or even Cuzco.

However, modern cities exceed by far those of former times. How can one center be conceived for the boundless urban areas of London, the Ruhr, Tokyo where the number of inhabitants exceeds 10 millions?

Who knows how towns with millions of inhabitants in China are spreading? How can a civic center be created in such overpopulated areas?

There have been some successful attempts in medium-sized towns : at the time of Mussolini the replanning of the large public square in Brescia, right in the center of a crowded built up area. And there were the excellent projects of the architect Vetter in Switzerland to provide Lausanne, a particularly hilly town, with a grouping of the commercial, administrative and public buildings around well proportioned promenades: then the scheme of the late Jean Tschumi for a new quarter in the neighbourhood of the Lausanne Fair, overlooked by a tower of 682 feet, with office and apartment buildings enclosing vast public squares, the whole integrated with the Olympic stadium.

The remodelling of the center does not, however, ameliorate in any way the traffic congestion in a town as it aims to be purely decorative, as opposed to resolving a functional defect.

Town planners, on the other hand, have envisaged the erection of urban cores at the periphery of the centers. Now these satellite towns do not diminish the density of the traffic, moreover the space between the center itself and the satellite towns is soon choked with buildings until finally the town finds itself enlarged by a vast concentric ring. The problems have merely spread.

Much different is the idea of autonomous towns, a form of decentralization such as has been undertaken in Paris by the creation in various places in the country of new towns, among which the scheme for a

town of 100.000 inhabitants nearToulouse by the architect Candilis is the most remarkable. In America, the Welfare Island in the East River is going to be developed to lodge 70.000 people and will consist of a vast platform under which the traffic will circulate, leaving the upper spaces free for 9 to 30 storied blocks.

The Columbia school of architecture has studied a scheme for Dallas, comprising simultaneously a new center and autonomous town. Today we know that every urban settlement creates a swelling In the organization of the country. It is expedient then to envisage each undertaking in a study exceeding mere regional limits.

Neither railway, airplane or motorcar can limit communications to one region, without international repercussions : town planning alone allows itself to work by small sections.

Every architect endeavours to compose schemes that are closer to the fine arts than to the complex research, necessary to a development which needs a host of skills in many spheres.

But there is one tragic aspect: the problem of enormous towns such as London, Tokyo, Paris, New York and many others seems to be insoluble in spite of the partial solutions set forth by a few experts of integrity.

Our capital cities risk going to ruin as a result of their own overexpansion.

Are towns still pleasant places for people to live in, or have they become the afflicted and anonymous home of a new biological species? H R Von def Müh„ The old continent in search of its road structure (Page108) Europe, rightly named the old continent, has vanquished many fears and prejudices before entering with a considerable delay into the era of highways. Italy, soon followed by Germany, started building motorways during the period between the two world wars. When peace returned these two countries went back to work without delay.

Today, Germany, with more than 3.000 km of highways, occupies the first place in Europe and the second in the world (after the U.S.A.). Italy is third with a total of 1.600 km, but one cannot consider this country without mentionning its future projects. In fact, the construction of 1.016 km has been urgently decreed. Motorists as well as official associations have been demanding highways for decades. Many arguments were put forth, irrefutable and unrefuted, but administrative apathy won the day and while in Germany it was strategic considerations that counted and in Italy a question of prestige, in other countries a start was never made. The flow and safety of the ever increasing traffic, while constantly adding to public funds, became acute problems. Alas, the most convincing arguments remained without effects and it was tourism that provided the initial impulse in all countries at about the same time. Tourism offers the enormous advantage of bringing foreign currency into a country without any corresponding outgoings.

To attract tourists to unknown countryside, one needs modern roads and adequate hotels.

The example of Germany and Italy proved that the enterprise was paying. Now poor and wealthy countries alike are building highways. A new era opens for the motorized traffic.

France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Great Britain, Yougoslavia, Austria, even Switzerland are completing rational programs.

Even Hungary and Bulgaria associate to this effort. Soon the motor car will have the motorways it has been waiting for during more than fifty years. Henri-F. Berchet The classical Islamic architecture (Page 134)

In the classical period of Islamic art, spreading over the eighth and ninth centuries of our era, an architectural idiom appropriate to the Moslem world takes shape under the aegis of the Omeyyade and Abasside caliphs. The most original example from this era is probably the Omeyyade mosque, which was composed of three principal elements : (1) The sanctuary proper, or hall of prayers, formed of a rectangular hypostyle hall of which one side was usually longer than the other; (2) The central yard ; (3) The portico edging that yard on three sides facing the hall of prayers.

The source of these various elements are situated in the Romano-Sassanide art, yet neither the influence of previous architectural styles nor the use of salvaged Roman materials are sufficient to explain the new shapes. An original way of handling relating volumes characterizes the classical mosque.

The study of buildings as far back as the Hegira, such as the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, then the Great Mosque of Damas, the Amr Mosque on Fostat, the mosques of Cordova, of Kairouan, of Samarra, of Ibn Touloun in Fostat, enable us to follow the progress of an architecture that begins to find in the 9th century a full appreciation of its value. Built in 876, the mosque bearing the name of the governor of Egypt Ahmed Ibn Touloun, is built in the form of a quadrilateral of 490 feet of side, and comprises 160 columns surmounted by slightly overhanging broken arches.

Here the practice of reusing salvaged materials has disappeared, and the use of brick reveals a return to the Iraqui tradition.

The mosques of classical type are subdivided in two types: Those in which the hall of prayers is constructed in wide bays, as in the prototype of Medina, and at Damas and Ibn Touloun, and the other comprising a series of naves at right angles to the Kibla.

as in Amr, Kairouan, Cordova and Abou Dolaf.

Some slight variations are found within these groups—sometimes the bay is conceived as a whole, whereas in a mosque with several naves, the forest of columns gives the impression of a more cluttered space. But in both cases one finds a multidirectional space, in which the eye can roam easily. This total freedom resulting from a hypostyle room expresses perfectly the nomadic soul.

An expression of the infinite is sought after, as one cannot see the limits of the hall of prayers through the maze of columns. Thus the mosque is the perfect expression of a dynamic and flowing space, so characteristic of the nomadic Arab civilization.

As the limits of the space are not defined, the significance of the façade is somewhat diminished. The main façade of the hall of prayers is reabsorbed in a combination of arcades accentuating the horizontal lines in such a way that there is no real demarcation between the inside and the outside. This spatial continuity is typical of all the classical mosques. At the undefined point between the open and covered areas, one finds an interpenetration of the volumes which bears comparison with the most advanced ideas in contemporary architecture.

The horizontal lines and frequent use of rooms with one side longer than the other are characteristics of the Arab soul : the nomads travelling in groups in the desert do not walk on roads and instead of walking in file, form a line by walking side by side.

This habit of spreading out over a large area is translated into a desire for width in their architecture and also influences the disposition of the worshippers during prayer.

The best proof of the existence of parallels between the idea of space and the survival of the nomad spirit is the disappearance of these elements in later Islamic architecture, with the Fatimides, the Mamlouks and the Seldjoukides.

Henri Stierlin Connexions between the plastic arts (Page 146)

An insufficiency of aesthetic refinement has led many cultured people to think that little of any worth could be expected from our epoch.

Apart from their historic value, the ancient styles make us sharply aware that we have not been able to realize anything of comparative value. The weaknesses seem to lie rather in the conception than in the proper value of a building. Our century disposes of an unprecedented technology. Admirable

new materials are available and methods of production are steadily advancing. One knows how to build quickly, one has the means of handling huge elements. This technological progress has allowed a total revolution in architectural expression, but the evolution continues so fast that architecture no longer has the stability of style that was the case in ancient times.

Yet the increase in possible means of expression has seldom stimulated the plastic qualities of architectural design.

All the great civilizations have known how to harmonize their works with their surroundings—it is probably more its position on the Acropolis than the Parthenon itself that has contributed to the glory of Greek civilization. The great cities of Antiquity took advantage of very beautiful sites. No epoch has so much discussed the problems of city planning as has our own, though with such poor results.

An exception must be made, however, of the bold experiments of Chandigarh, Brasilia and a few others.

Who are the artists who by team work could contribute to the creation of a true contemporary civilization? Besides planners and architects, there should be painters and sculptors, who have for so long been relegated to taking a secondary limited place. Painters produce paintings of various sizes, but remain without sociological influence. Their works, sought after by museums when they are of exceptional value, do not contribute to the beauty of a city. As for sculptors, their activity is on the wane, though fortunately the disastrous era of commemorative sculptures commissioned from the worst parasites of art is past. But even the best are compelled to produce perfectly useless sculptures.

In order to improve on this state of affairs, it should be possible to modify the method of commissioning painters and sculptors, by inviting them to take part in the conception of all important projects. The city planners and architects should be themselves artists with a complete plastic appreciation.

Founded in 1950 in Paris, the “Groupe Espace” uniting town planners, architects, painters, sculptors, and creative artists in furniture design and the graphic arts aimed at developing a new approach to enrich contemporary life with works of value.

Among the experiments undertaken since the creation of the “Groupe Espace”, let us mention the Del Marie's works of polychromy for industry; the bold attempt of the architect Villanueva for the university city of Caracas, the buildings erected in Switzerland by the architect Jean Tschumi, and finally some experiments in Iran by

two architects who are promoters of modern architecture in that country.

Every attempt to invite artists to co-operate to an architectural work assumes the standard of this architecture. Up to now Le Corbusier made his own experiments of a synthesis of arts. At the “Pavilion Suisse", at the "Cité Universitaire”, at the dwelling unit of Marseille, the church of Ronchamp, at the Capitol in Chandigarh, the architect himself designed the colour schemes, the frescos, the sculpted elements. But there may be an unevenness of creative spirit between Le Corbusier the architect and Le Corbusier the artist. Oscar Niemeyer, Walter Gropius, Eero Saarinen, and the Japanese architect Tange all realize the importance of co-operation with artists though one has to admit that contemporary architects and artists have seldom collaborated really successfully. André Bloc The first International Biennial of Tapestry, Lausanne 1962 (Pagei52) Twenty countries were represented at the first Biennial of Tapestry, which took place in Lausanne from the 15th June to the 17th September under the presidency of Jean Lurçat. It is the first important exhibition of an art that has been revived brilliantly after a disappearance of 20 years.

It was the initiative of the CITAM (International Center of Ancient and Modern Tapestry) created last year in Lausanne that made it possible to organize this panoramic exhibition of tapestry. Twenty countries were assembled and this display proved most exciting for artists, art critics and historians.

The distinguished works exhibited in Lausanne included one of the latest tapestries of Le Corbusier measuring 90 sq. feet, a work of Jean Lurçat (one fragment of his “Song of the World”, the greatest tapestry of modern times), "La Poésie”, and a Japanese tapestry woven with the finger nails instead of combs. Among the remarkable works received were those sent by Poland, a black and white tapestry by Henri Georges Adam, and the works of Prassinos, Tourlière (France) and Denise Volta (Switzerland). This first Biennial was essentially centered on mural and monumental tapestry, it being intended to present the smaller pieces at the next Biennial. It has enabled us to establish a balance sheet that is all in favour of tapestry and the organization of this great exhibition.


Form and the jewels of Irene Brynner (Page 158)

The idea of form seems to be very important and changes rapidly. It presents today two

primordial faces: the one bound to mathematical abstraction, the other attached to the intuitive world. Both make different demands and we should like to define them briefly.

In architecture the idea of form remains inseparable from the study of structures.

This calls for a mathematical knowledge of which most constructors are ignorant.

Construction methods are old and as a result forms evolve slowly. The real architecture belongs at present to the laboratory, and the society of tomorrow will master it eagerly, as it will have to resolve problems of such amplitude that traditional methods will have to be abandoned.

The intuitive appreciation of form must be developed to meet the new demands on it as our senses no longer tolerate decoration for its own sake. We cannot accept a form that no longer fulfils a definite need, and mustseekdeepwithin ourselves to recognize this need. The jewels of Irene Brynner demonstrate this admirably.

During the lifetime of a human being adornment can become essential, not as a simple decoration, but rather as a sort of homage to life.

The non-utilitarian object also has its reason for existence. To adorn oneself can be a passion, a loving passion, and a means emerging from within oneself to find a new life symbolized by a spot of gold on the skin, a pierced spot of gold giving to the hand or the neck an impression that is not purely sensual. In this case the jewel enhances the skin; it is a magnificat.

In her workshop in New York, the sculptor Irene Brynner makes her jewels entirely herself. They are lost and cast gold, waxe When there are stones, the settings are devised by following the shape of the jewel, a method that is far from the traditional mounting. The stones are sometimes sculptured instead of being cut in the classical manner. Often the gold, dull from the mould is polished on its raised edges only.

The jewel so conceived becomes a real play of light and attempts nothing more than to be an object mingling with life, thus finding its scale. The intuitive shape, spontaneously born from the fingers, reveals a long analysis of mankind by the creator, be that analysis conscious or not, and it is from here that the depth of expression has sprung.

The musician is able to define the note A and thence deduct the other notes of the scale. It is even possible to explain how classical harmony is giving way to other forms of composition, forms born from a need of expression. But how a musical composition transforms itself into emotion for the listener remains a mystery as our

knowledge of the sense of hearing and its sublimation is vague. The same goes for the visual sensation and the sense of touch.

Having made a very deep analysis of mankind, Irene Brynner has succeeded, in a purely intuitive manner, in identifying the jewel with the individual.

Léon Prébandier News from France


The study of an architectural programme in France seems to encounter more difficulties than in any other European country.

The urban regulations established by civil servants practically dictate the architectural forms and leave no room for artistic emotion or creativeness.

The sluggishness and delays in administration, the interference from political quarters, the lack of taste of the French client lead to a conservative and unimaginative architecture.

In spite of these facts, many French architects are conscious of the need for a progressive architecture and several recent events prove it: The International Congress of City Planning held last September at the headquarters of Unesco, completed by an exhibition of architecture at the “Musée d'Art Moderne” among others, provoked keen interest and much constructive criLionel Mirabaud News from Paris

(Page 226)

The exhibition “L’Objet” last Spring was definitely an exceptional event for the plastic arts. It will be remembered that this exhibition used to be seen at the "Musée des Arts Décoratifs” in the cycle of the “Antagonismes” inaugurated two years ago with the presentation of the most advanced tendencies in modern painting. This year painting has given way to “L’Objet". For this purpose artists and sculptors, were invited and given a complete freedom of expression within the limits dictated by utility.

At the exhibition "L'Objet", the jeweflery was particularly worthy of notice, displaying a freshness of approach to which Picasso, Laurens, Ernst, Mathieu contributed with a series of broaches. Claire Falkenstein experimented in modern necklace forms as did Coulentianos, while Jean Dubuffet sticks to coarser materials such as iron wire and silver paper. It must be said, however, that in this large collection, few of the objects fulfilled the basic requirement of fitness for purpose, and confirmed the impression that many artists live in a romantic and idealistic cloud.

S. Gille-Delafon

News from Italy

(Page 229)

The Biennial of Modern Art of Venice and the Biennial of Ancient Art of Bologna were the great events of Italian artistic life during the year 1962. Between these two exhibitions inaugurated in Spring (Venice) and in Autumn (Bologna), many national exhibitions took place in most regions of Italy. The enthusiastic and generous participation of museums and collectors, Italians and foreigners alike, made available a collection of incomparable value: from abroad alone, 164 pieces (94 paintings and 70 drawings) have been lent, among 234 works exhibited, of which 82 came from Great Britain and 48 from the Louvre.

Giulia Veronesi

News from Spain

(Page 232)

The new ‘‘College of architecture” of Barcelona is set in the ancient quarter of the town, in front of the Roman wall and the cathedral. (Architect : Xavier Busquets).

The tower is seven storied, and consists of a library, the editing offices of the review “Cuadernos”, the management of the exhibition, information offices, and the secretariat. The two upper floors are occupied by the club bar and restaurant.

A terrace with a panoramic view over the town completes the building.

Picasso, who spent his youth and obtained his first recognition in Barcelona, accepted with enthusiasm an invitation to collaborate in its construction. The themes that he chose for his decoration are based on Catalan festivals which had made an unforgettable impression on him.

News from Denmark

(Page 235)

In early April a campaign was started in Denmark for the modernization of play grounds. The prevailing opinion is that the present stereotype arrangement, of play grounds does not sufficiently develop childrens minds and activities. Some psychologists have created “places of bric-àbrac" where the children can build their house or igloo under the supervision of a teacher. During the whole summer, order is maintained by the children, who elect their own government. When winter comes, the houses are demolished and the materials stocked. The problem of children's games is taken very seriously by the Danish community and in the gardens of Tivoli, in Copenhagen, a happy mixture of art and

buffoonery specially adopted to children's needs have led to the creation of similar parks throughout the world.

News from Mexico

(Page 236)

The confering of the Auguste Perret Prize on Felix Candela at the International Congress of Architecture in London was very significant—particularly in view of his influence on Mexican architecture for many years previously.

A few months ago, Carlos Obregon Santaciiia, one of the founders of modern Mexican architecture, at once builder and eager polemist, died suddenly. Yet the fight about modern architecture as it is or as it ought to be continues, principally animated by the old master Jose Villagran Garcia. A special issue of the review “Artes de Mexico" dedicated to Mexican architecture did not succeed in clearing up the general confusion, in spite of a brilliant treatise by Mauricio Gomez Mayorga.

In the meantime, building continues steadily.

The enormous planning scheme entrusted to the architect Mario Pani by the Mexican government has not yet been completed.

Mexico is one of the few remaining countries in the world which has boundless possibilities.

Ida Rodriguez P.

Summary of the Swiss exhibitions (Page 239)

Four exhibitions took place this year in Lausanne. The retrospective of R. Th. Bosshard showed all the aspects of an intensely poetic pictorial work. Marius Borgeaud was a revelation, in the great sensitivity and geometric discipline of his work. Abraham Hermanjat (1862-1932) remains one of the purest poets of colour. Henry Bischoff, an exceptional engraver on wood as well as a delicate painter has adorned the poems of C.-F. Ramuz, the prose of Henry Pourrat, Daisy Ashford and Edmond Gilliard.

In Bienne, the Third Open Air Exhibition of Swiss Sculpture revealed considerable talent in the field of monolithic sculpture (Aesbacher) and also in the mobile or transparent sculpture. Worthy of mention also were: Gigon, Koch, Meister, Wyss, Roviller, Ramseyer, Katharina Sallenbach, Schorderet, Luginbühl, Kemeny, Vögeli, Linck, Tinguely, Hafelfinger, Fischer, Latour, Condé, Poncet, Bodmer, Witschi.

In Pully, the “Maison Pulliérane” assembled in May 200 lithographs of Daumier.

In Geneva, the “Musée Rath” presented last summer an exciting exhibition : "Chagall and the Bible".

In Basle, the Kunsthalle organized two vast exhibitions of primitive art: "2,000 years of Nigerian sculpture” and "The art of New Guinea”. Basle also did homage to the great Spanish sculptor Eduardo Chillida.

In Zurich, the Kunsthaus attracted the crowds with “7,000 years of art in Iran” and the “Chant du Monde” of Jean Lurçat, the greatest tapestry of modern times.

In Bern the Kunsthalle presented a retrospective of Charles Lapicque and of Francis Picabia accompanied by three young American artists: Alfred Leslie, Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg.

Vevey showed a gala of watercolours: “de Cézanne à Picasso" with two or three masterpieces signed by Cézanne and Dufy.

The Castle of Coppet celebrated the 3 centuries of the Gobelins. At this occasion, the most beautiful 17th, 18th and 19th century tapestries were on show.

André Kuenzi The National Exhibition of 1964 in Lausanne (Page 249) The objective of the National Exhibition to be held on the shores of Lake Geneva will be to present a lively nation, active and aware of its problems.

The exhibition will be divided in two main parts : — a general part, the real backbone of the exhibition, which will illustrate Swiss life past, present and future; — a special part devoted to various regional activities of the country, presented with the co-operation of the exhibitors.

It is obviously upon the former that the prestige and eventual success or failure of the Exhibition rests.

G. Cocchi The importance of the trees in planning future development of countries, regions and towns (Page 253) Planning aims to develop the soil in such a way that generations to come may be assured of adequate living space. In regions of dense population, this can only be achieved if forests, an important factor in the struggle against pollution and noise, can be protected in the areas around important centers. It is essential that the clearing of forests should be authorized only in exceptional cases. The forest is a source of prosperity and it is in the general interest that it should be safeguarded.

Dr. R. Stiideli