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Eero Saarinen- a 20th Century Architect

Eero Saarinen 1910-1961
Eero Saarinen 1910-1961

My blog posts will be focused on the work of Eero Saarinen (1910-1961), a 20th century, Finnish American architect and industrial designer. Saarinen is know for his neofuturistic style, an artistic and architectural movement that emphasized a desire to depart from post-modernism and move towards an idealistic and better future.

Saarinen found early recognition in furniture design before creating his architectural masterpieces. His pieces of furniture were said to be organic in design and he was widely praised for this unique and artistic approach to home furnishing.

Womb Chair
Womb Chair

That being said, his architectural genius makes the furniture design seem irrelevant. Saarinen is the architect behind dozens of projects that have dramatically changed the field of architecture and challenged the post-modernistic eye. A list of his works can be found here: List of works by Eero Saarinen.

The remainder of my blog posts will highlight a few of his more famous works including: the Gateway Arch, the Milwaukee County War Memorial, the TWA Terminal, the Ingalls Ice Rink, the John Deere World Headquarters, and the Bell Labs Holmdel Complex. Each of these buildings speaks to Saarinen’s neofuturistic style and his passion for exploration and experimentation in American architectural designs.

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Gateway Arch
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Bell Labs Holmdel Complex
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TWA Terminal
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Ingalls Ice Rink
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John Deere World Headquarters
Milwaukee County War Memorial
Milwaukee County War Memorial

Beyeler Museum, Switzerland – Renzo Piano

Beyeler Foundation Museum, Switzerland – Renzo Piano

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This building is one of the Piano work that can best green architecture of Piano. Indeed, without knowing the building history or background, when I saw the pictures of the museum, I though  that it was there before the plants. It seems like the plants are growing from the house. Also, the style of the house looks like a old fashioned European style.

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However,  the Beyeler Museum building, designed by the architect Renzo Piano, was completed in 1997 .  In order to make the building look like a very old building , Piano used material  to built the building is natural stone blended into lanscape. Also, as most green architect work, the building use mostly solar energy through the solar panels located on its top .

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Centre Georges Pompidou

exterior aerial   The Centre Georges Pompidou, Centre Pompidou for short, was designed by contest winners Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers. Pianoexterior walkway met Rogers at Expo ’70 in Osaka Japan. The realized they have a lot in common and then had an engineering firm suggest they compete to build the Centre Georges Pompidou, so they did.  The building was an overwhelming success — often described as “high-tech” by its spectators. Piano himself was displeased with this interpretation, however. His intention was not to create a “high-tech” structure, but a “joyful urban machine” that slightly resembles a “ship in dry dock.” According to the New York Times, Centre Interior walkwayPompidou “turned the architecture world upside-down.” All-in-all, its design was undeniably a huge success. Needless to say, Roger and Piano became recognizable names across the globe.

It houses the largest museum for modern art in Europe, as well as a vast public library. By 2006, the building had over 180 million visitors. Needless to say, Piano and Rogers names’ were recognized around the world.  Piano and Rogers went on to found an architect firm called Piano & Rogers.

Whitney Museum, New York – Renzo Piano

Whitney Museum, New York – Renzo Piano

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The Whitney Museum, design by the Italian architect Renzo Piano, was completed in 2015 and is located in the city of New York, New York. Through this work, the architect shows his capability of constructing a building minimizing space. Indeed, as the pictures show, the building looks like many small building blocks placed on the top of each other in a asymmetrical way . This is an appropriate design for urban areas where space one of the main issue.

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KIX

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One of Renzo Piano’s most notable works is the Kansai International Airport (KIX). This airport is located in the Osaka Bay in Japan, is an airport that was built entirely on a man-made island three miles off KIX phase 2shore. This means, in addition to the traditional challenges an architect faces such as creating a building that is functional, safe, beautiful, unique, and representative of the client’s imperatives, Piano also faced the challenge of constructing a manmade island that could withstand the forces of nature it is exposed to in the Osaka Bay, namely earthquakes and tsunamis. Shortly after being constructed, Mother Nature tested the structure with a powerful earthquake, and the airport was affected so little, that it didn’t even have to delay any flights.

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The airport was constructed to relieve the Osaka International Airport of its congestion and relieve the Osaka International Airport, it did. The main terminal is the longest terminal in the world, airport terminal exterioras of 2008, totaling 1.1 miles from end to end. The building is shaped like a airfoil and is equipped with giant air conditioning ducts that are strategically located in order to promote quality air circulation throughout the terminal. The second terminal is exclusive to Peach and focuses on low-cost carriers, charging a lower landing fee. The building turned out to be unique, beautiful, safe, and efficient. Renzo Piano won the Pritzker Prize in 1998 for its design.

 

Parco della Musica

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Located in northern Rome, Italy, Parco della Musica is a large, multifunctional music complex with three different concert halls, each a different size. The smallest concert hall has 7 hundred seats, the largest concert hall has 2,800 seats, and the third has 1,200 seats. Each hall is separated by an outdoor lobby to ensure

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soundproofing quality. Parco della Musica is open to the public, welcoming anyone and everyone to explore music culture. It was built from 1995-2002 where part of the 1960 Olympics took place. In 2014, just twelve years after completion, two million people visited Parco della Musica, making it the second most visited cultural music venue in the world, second only to the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York City. Personally, I do not like the planlook of this music center. All I can think is “hungry, hungry cockroaches” when I see the park from an aerial view. However, I can still appreciate the grandeur of this architecture.interior

The Shard – Renzo Piano

The Shard , London – Renzo Piano

 

 

 

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The Shard , also called as Shard of Glass is one of work of the international famous architect Renzo Piano. With a height of about 310 meter (about 1015 feet), Shard is the tallest building in the United Kingdom.

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This building is based on green architecture since the way it has been design minimize the use of non-renewable energy. However, in this writing, i will focus on the exterior design of the building.  It To me, the most attractive feature about is building is glass surrounding it.  It looks like a non-mature flower: the glasses representing the flower petals and the structure on the inside of the building representing the flower pistil. Is this building conveying the reborn of London?

 

Alexandra School, Neave Brown

Alexandra School

 

I wanted to add the school building of Alexandra Road, to show the concept and vision of architect Neave Brown.Brown designed Alexandra Road to be an entire community living for families. The Brown design consisted of housing, schools, and even grocery stores. Brown designed these communities to encompass all needs of the families that live there.

Run Run Shaw Creative Media Centre- Bashaw

This building was built in 2011 in Hong Kong.  It is an academic building on the campus of City University of Hong Kong. I is a crystalline design throughout the building including rough cut diamond inspired elements in the structural beams, lighting, windows and doors. It was designed to help spark creativity in the students and environmental research. It was designed to increase natural lighting throughout the building along with creating unique spaces to help produce collaboration and a feeling of free flowing. I enjoyed Lebeskind’s choice of colors and materials like the room above with the red walls which could have been overpowering except for the ceiling and dark flooring. I believe this would be a fun place to learn and could get a person out of their typical comfort zone allowing them to learn and interact more.

Diogene: The Micro House – Renzo Piano

 

Diogene: The Micro House – Renzo Piano

Italian architect Renzo Piano, famous for designing The Shard skyscraper in London, has created a micro-house called Diogene that is only 6 square metres big, yet comes with a kitchenette, shower and bedroom.  
Diogene is a 65 square feet green micro-house designed by Renzo Piano. Completed in 2013, the tiny house is installed at the Vitra Campus in Germany. This 17000 Euro house was mainly made of wood covered by aluminum. As most green houses, Piano’s  tiny house  has on its top some solar panels used to provide energy to the house. Under the house is located a rainwater collector which minimize the  water.

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The house composed tow part: the kitchen, located in the rear and the living room, in the front. The living room is composed many well organized funiture as shown in the picture above such as  a pull out sofa and folding table. The kitchen also contained well organized furniture such oven, a shower and a toilet.

 

 

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