Iconic Figures in Modern Architecture

Ask any graduating architecture student and for sure you will find out that his or her dream is to have the design and architecture genius of Frank Lloyd Wright. But wait, while Mr. Wright may have the distinction of being a budding architect’s idol, there are others who should be right about where Frank is in that podium. Let’s digest 5 big shots in the architectural world, including Frank Lloyd Wright.

Modern Architecture

Image by: Wonderlane


Ludwig Mies van der Rohe

Famously for the saying “Less is More,” Mies was born in Germany and trained with his father. His architectural studies made him famous locally until his 1927 design of the German Pavilion at the International; Exposition in Barcelona, Spain made him known worldwide. He created a concept of having internal walls made from glass and marble which could be repositioned since they did not support any weight. His favourite material for highlighting interior walls was industrial steel and plated glass.

Notable works of Mies are the Crown Hall in Chicago, the National Gallery in Berlin and the Farnsworth House.

Walter Gropius

This German architect isthe founder of the Bauhaus School and regarded as one of the pioneers of modern architecture. Gropius is well-known for his transformation of the Bauhaus – an art school that combined fine arts and crafts. In 1937, Walter Gropius was invited to teach at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Later he founded The Architects’ Collaborative (TAC) with the idea of teamwork as its driving force. There is a borough in Berlin named after Gropius named Gropiusstadt. Among his notable works include the Harvard Graduate Center and the John F. Kennedy Federal Office Building both in Massachusetts and the Pan Am Building in New York.

Charles-Édouard Jeanneret-Gris

Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier was also a designer, painter, urban planner and writer. This multi-talented wonder was one of those who coined and pioneered what is now known as Modern Architecture. You can see his prominence in his works spanning two continents – Europe and America and in India. His design concepts are known to be of minimal concrete columns and slabs. Le Corbusier became famous for the French Villas he built together with his cousin Pierre Jeanneret. He was also known for his “Contemporary City” that is composed of skyscraper office buildings made of steel frames and glass curtains. A few other notable designs of Le Corbusier are the government buildings in India like the Governor’s Palace in Chandigarh and the Palace of the Soviets in Moscow.

Leonardo da Vinci

Who wouldn’t include Leonardo da Vinci in his many favourites as an architect or designer? You name it, Da Vinci WAS it! You could say he was a jack of all trades. He was a painter, sculptor, inventor, cartographer, mathematician and best of all, architect. He is probably the most talented man ever to have come out of the Renaissance period and is your ideal Renaissance Man. But before we talk about his architectural prowess, we must emphasise that Leonardo was first and foremost a painter, with his most famous Mona Lisa. His designs as an architect were quite interesting with big domes, a four-way staircase and even double spiral staircases. As an urban planner, he presented a plan for an “ideal city” for the city of Milan

Frank Lloyd Wright

Probably concurred by many as being the greatest architect in history, Frank Lloyd Wright had sights that were way beyond his era. His main idea in his designs is called organic architecture and is described as having harmony with humanity and the environment. This mantra is best exemplified in his Fallingwater design and is hailed as the best work in American architecture. Who doesn’t know about the Guggenheim Museum in New York? What is probably unknown is that it took Wright 16 years to do this building. His other works include the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church and the Unity Temple in Illinois.

Other notable architects include Jorn Utzon who designed the Sydney Opera House and Frank Gehry who is known for the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain.

Building a new home or remodelling an existing one takes a little bit of effort on your part. If you are in Australia, find quality drafting services in Sydney and other major cities and who knows, these iconic men’s designs can be channelled to your very own wonderful home.

Erin Emanuel