Saturday, July 16, 2011

ARCHITECTURE-ARQUITECTURA TODAY: Charles Gwathmey’s Modernist Masterpieces

In 1965, Charles Gwathmey, just three years out of the master’s program in architecture at Yale University and fresh off a European trip where he’d immersed himself in the works of Le Corbusier, designed a house for his parents in Amagansett, New York. It wasn’t his first project, but the modest structure—1,200 square feet in size, costing $35,000 to build—instantly altered the landscape of American architecture. It also turned him into a modernist superstar. But for Gwathmey, who died in 2009, what made his practice fulfilling was designing homes for private clients, among them actress Faye Dunaway, actor Jerry Seinfeld, and director Steven Spielberg. He also produced astounding public projects, such as Astor Place condominiums and an addition to the Guggenheim Museum (both in New York City) and the Yale Arts Complex (New Haven, Connecticut)

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