Paul Rudolph: An International Modernist

Paul Rodolph left his architectural mark on not only America, but the world from 1947 until his death in 1997. Born on October 23, 1918 in Elkton, Kentucky, Rudolph studied architecture and graduated with a Bachelor's Degree from Alabama Polytechnic Institute (presently Auburn University) in 1947. (1)

                                Source: http://prudolph.lib.umassd.edu/node/14949

After a stint in the US Navy during World War II, he studied "under famed Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius" at Harvard University. Following graduation, he began a five year partnership with Ralph Twitchell in Sarasota, Florida.  “Rudolph was a leader and a “major figure of the ‘Sarasota School of Architecture,' which gained international attention for innovative solutions to the modern American home."  In 1951 Rudolph began practicing individually in Boston, New Haven and New York.  "He was Dean of the Yale School of Architecture from 1958-1965, during which his best known work, the Yale Art & Architecture Building, was completed and became both a Modernist icon and a topic of controversy.”(1)

Rudolph and Renewal: Paul Rudolph and the Architecture of the Model City TRAILER from steve taylor on Vimeo.

Many of his International Style and Brutalist designed buildings are considered ahead of their time in terms of construction and design; however, many of his works remain controversial, and quite a few have been demolished. Unfortunately, his legacy like many other notable architects is always in jeopardy.

Sources, and further information:
The Paul Rudolph Foundation: http://www.paulrudolph.org/
Paul Rudolph and his Architecture: http://prudolph.lib.umassd.edu/
Paul Rudolph on Archiplanet: http://www.archiplanet.org/wiki/Paul_Rudolph


Pierre Koenig: Ahead of His Time

Without a doubt, Pierre Koenig was a great American modern architect.  Anyone who has even a passing interest in modern architecture has undoubtedly seen photographs of his ultra-modern Stahl House courtesy of the all encompassing lens of Jules Shulman.

Pierre Koenig was born in San Francisco, California on October 17, 1925, and later moved with his family to Los Angeles.   For nine years beginning in 1943, he attended Pasadena City College in Pasadena, California, the University of Utah's Department of Engineering in Salt Lake City, worked for architect Raphael Soriano (designed Koenig House #1 in 1950), and graduated from The university of Southern California in 1952 with a Bachelor in Architecture (1).

During his career, he designed and assisted in designing many unique homes.  Nevertheless, he will forever be known for his futuristic and extremely hip designs of two famous Case Study Houses: the Bailey House (1958), and the Stahl House (1960).  Somewhat less known, but no less important is the Bailey House or Case Study House # 21.  The Bailey House was constructed with revolutionary new materials and processes such as, the residential use of steel combined with arc welding.  Many architects consider it to be Koenig's best design (1).  The Stahl House was built for aerospace executive C. H. "Buck" Stahl on unsuitable terrain above Sunset Drive in Hollywood Hills.  Its cantilevered design combined with location offers visitors a breathtaking view of Los Angeles.  Also known as Case Study House #22, it has been used as a set for more than a few movies, commercials, and music videos (2).

Pierre Koenig passed away in 2004, but he left an enduring legacy that helped define post war modern architecture in California.

Sources for further viewing:
1.  Koenig, by Neil Jackson: Taschen 2007
2.  The Most Photographed Home in The World: IAMNOTASTALKER.COM
3.  Pierre Koenig: A Futurist For Today, Jetset Modern


Jules Shulman's Birthday

Famous photographer Jules Shulman would have been 100 today.  His classy photographs of modern architecture set a bar that others try to emulate.  Sadly, he passed away in 2009.  The following is a video done in 2007 for KCET's webstories.  Please enjoy!

Rest in peace, Mr. Shulman!