fixler - Nicole Chan 22 November 2010 Amanda Dietz David...

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Nicole Chan 22 November 2010 Amanda Dietz David Fixler Extra Credit David Fixler is the president of DOCOMOM-US/New England, the international organization dedicated to preserving the modern movement. In his lecture he expressed his concern for the fading efforts of preserving modern architecture and design. The history behind architecture nowadays has not been the priority of designers, which in turn has infuriated historic preservationists. There has been an ongoing battle between these groups over what is more important, designing new aesthetically pleasing building structures, or maintaining the history/ educating the public about a structure’s historical significance. Fixler’s main points about the problems of modernist preservation in Massachusetts are funding, education, and the importance of design vs. preservation. Fixler proceeds to support his argument by giving examples of modern buildings that have lost its historical meaning through restoration and redesign. Fixler reminds us the origin of modernism; it was a movement that revolved around the construction of mass housing which would highlight the key design features for light, space, and air. The debate at hand is if the definition of modernism is history or is it constantly evolving and becoming modern everyday. The ongoing debate has caused a new way of looking at history from multiple perspectives. However, it is not always entirely the designer’s/architect’s fault for not producing a plan that is consistent with the historical values. For example, when the Barcelona Pavilion was demolished in 1930, and rebuilt in 1986, architects did not have the resources to determine Mies Van der Rhoe’s
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vision and plan for the Barcelona Pavilion. Thus, it is difficult to rebuild according to the architect’s original plan and have it portray the same original meanings. Due to the lack of information in this scenario, the plan took more of a reconstruction, rather than a preservation approach for the Barcelona Pavilion. The Barcelona City Council did its best to predict what Mies would have done in terms of materials used, structural design, and location. Large mirror-like windows were installed to allow as much light in as
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This note was uploaded on 10/21/2011 for the course ART-HIST 343 taught by Professor Jeffbeaulieu during the Spring '11 term at UMass (Amherst).

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fixler - Nicole Chan 22 November 2010 Amanda Dietz David...

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