Cover image for Architecture and cubism
Architecture and cubism
Blau, Eve.
Publication Information:
Montréal : Centre canadien d'architecture/Canadian Centre for Architecture ; Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, [1997]

Physical Description:
xi, 264 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
General Note:
"Many of the essays in this book were originally presented at a colloquium organized by the Canadian Centre for Architecture"--Pref.
The Maison Cubiste and the meaning of modernism in pre-1914 France / David Cottington -- The burden of Cubism : the French imprint on Czech architecture, 1910-1914 / Irene Z̧antovská Murray -- Cubism and the Gothic tradition / Kevin D. Murphy -- "Architecture" in Léger's essays, 1913-1933 / Robert L. Herbert -- Architecture of the Cubist poem / Jay Bochner -- The cell in the city / Paul Overy -- Where are we? / Beatriz Colomina -- Unnatural acts : propositions for a new French garden, 1920-1930 / Dorothée Imbert -- Cubistic, Cubic, and Cubist / Yve-Alain Bois -- Jeanneret-Le Corbusier, painter-architect / Bruno Reichlin -- Anything but literal : Sigfried Giedion and the reception of Cubism in Germany / Detlef Mertins.
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Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
NA958.5.C83 A73 1997 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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A fundamental tenet of the historiography of modern architecture holds that cubism forged a vital link between avant-garde practices in early twentieth-century painting and architecture. This collection of essays, commissioned by the Canadian Centre for Architecture, takes a close look at that widely accepted but little scrutinized belief. In the first historically focused examination of the issue, the volume returns to the original site of cubist art in pre-World War I Europe and proceeds to examine the historical, theoretical, and socio-political relationships between avant-garde practices in painting, architecture, and other cultural forms, including poetry, landscape, and the decorative arts. The essays look at works produced in France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Czechoslovakia during the early decades of the twentieth century. Together, the essays show that although there were many points of intersection -- historical, metaphorical, theoretical, and ideological -- between cubism and architecture, there was no simple, direct link between them. Most often the connections between cubist painting and modern architecture were construed analogically, by reference to shared formal qualities such as fragmentation, spatial ambiguity, transparency, and multiplicity; or to techniques used in other media such as film, poetry, and photomontage. Cubist space itself remained two-dimensional; with the exception of Le Cobusiers work, it was never translated into the three dimensions of architecture. Cubism's significance for architecture also remained two-dimensional -- a method of representing modern spatial experience through the ordering impulses of art. Copublished with the Canadian Centre for Architecture/Centre Canadien d'Architecture.

Author Notes

Eve Blau is Lecturer in Architecture at the Graduate School of Design, Harvard University.