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Thread: Richard Meier - Modernist in White Armour

  1. #61


    Fabrizio, you're's so commonplace for modernist ideologues to live in classical buildings... That said, I don't see Meier as a hertless modernist idelogue. For what it matters, I think Meier is better than most modernists, by a damn sight. All that white: looks nice. And I've see modernsit homes with exquisite period pieces. They look great. Similarly, I don't see the problem with classical building and a modern piece of furniture.

  2. #62


    Absolutely. These buildings are beautiful. It's 2008... these are valid, as is 15CPW and Julian Schnabel's Palazzo Chupi.

    What is not modern is Meier's quote posted by Zephyr in the 15CPW thread.

    It is though, perfectly understandable that he chooses instead to live in an Upper East Side pre-war.

    Interesting how philosophy can be quietly set aside when the crown mouldings are in your digs.
    Last edited by Fabrizio; June 17th, 2008 at 05:23 AM. Reason: spelling

  3. #63

    Default On the Beach at Ackerberg House in Malibu California - House and Addition

    Ackerberg House and Addition
    (in Malibu)

    When does a house become a "compound"?

    This house started as a complex house, between mountains and sea, in southern California. But an addition was commissioned to the same Architect to expand and improve the lot - making it into effect a compound.

    Ackerberg House, as it is still referred, has such complexity now as to not even look like a house to those that pass by it. Maybe an office building, not a house. But you would be mistaken in so assuming.

    Richard Meier & Partners’
    Norman and Lisette Ackerberg House
    1984-1986, Addition 1992-1994
    Malibu, California USA

    Courtesy geocities / Erika Esquer


    Courtesy geocities

    Courtesy geocities / Erika Esquer


    Courtesy geocities / Erika Esquer

    Last edited by Zephyr; December 25th, 2008 at 08:11 AM.

  4. #64


    Richard Meier’s Model Museum.
    Richard Meier & Partners Architects

    Richard Meier’s Model Museum in Long Island City
    Offering a glimpse into the process behind his 40-year career, architect Richard Meier, FAIA, is once again unveiling his Long Island City model warehouse to the public. The 3,600-square-foot exhibition space includes the first model for the Smith House in Connecticut. Most prominent in the studio are large-scale presentation and study models of the Getty Center. Also of interest are the selection of unbuilt projects, such as a 1981 design for the Renault Headquarters in France and prototypes for furniture and product design as well as sculptures composed of wax elements, architectural model pieces, and stainless steel. Visitors are welcome by appointment on Fridays beginning May 2, from 10am to 5pm. Tours of the gallery are self-guided and last approximately 45 minutes.

    For further information contact:
    Mary Lou Bunn
    Richard Meier & Partners Architects
    Tel: 212.967.6060

    Published in About Town, On View on April 29th, 2008

  5. #65


    OK, when I become a billionaire and start my walkable/pedestrian friendly Bauhaus/modernist development somewhere tropical I'm either hiring Meier or ripping his stuff off mercislessly.

  6. #66

    Default Meier Designed Southern California Beach House, Exact Location Reserved - Exteriors

    Southern California Beach House

    Situated along a densely built section of the Pacific Coast Highway, this house fronts the Pacific Ocean to the south, a courtyard to the west, and the highway to the north. The courtyard provides a visual and spatial link between the entry, the highway and the ocean beyond. Like many courtyard building types endemic to Southern California, the open space creates an exterior living room.

    The succession through the house begins at the glazed translucent north entry wall and into the courtyard between the Main House and Guest House. The two-story entrance provides a framed view through the living room to the ocean beyond, and is transected by a second level glazed bridge and walkway.

    On the east side of the entry and walkway are the private living areas. To the west, the public areas open onto the courtyard. The double-height living room links the enclosed spaces with the deck and ocean via a full-height wall of glass and sliding doors. Sunscreens and louvers are integral to the facade providing both transitional space between the house and terrace, and passively shading the glazed surfaces from the sunlight.

    The beams at the roof, located above the horizontal framing, express the structural rhythm and layering of components. This cadence is repeated with the joinery of the painted aluminum exterior wall panels and modular windows. The mass of the exterior plaster walls are juxtaposed to the transparent glazed facades, creating a mosaic of layered materials. It is through this use of the layered materials combined with the enclosure walls as planes intersected by transparent surfaces, that the separation between inside and outside is blurred and the spaces are linked.

    Richard Meier & Partners, Architects LLP

    Richard Meier & Partners’
    Southern California Beach House
    1998 – 2001
    Exact Location Reserved,
    California USA

    Exterior Views
    Architectural Digest (AD)

    Photography by Scott Frances

    “The design challenge,” says Meier, “was to create privacy for interior and exterior living spaces
    while taking advantage of the southern exposure and clear views.” A break in the front façade
    —made of gridded and patterned glass—provides a glimpse into the courtyard.
    - AD

    Photography by Scott Frances

    In the study, Philip Taaffe’s 1999–2000 mixed-media work Devonian Landscape
    hangs near a Richard Meier & Partners–designed desk and early-20th-century Josef Hoffmann chairs.
    - AD

    Photography by Scott Frances

    Seemingly independent planes and volumes are assembled to create the elegantly ordered
    4,280-square-foot beachfront house. Its sharp white exterior,
    transparent features and sculptural elements are intended to
    capture and enhance an interplay of light and form.
    - AD

    Last edited by Zephyr; December 25th, 2008 at 08:14 AM.

  7. #67

    Default Meier Designed Southern California Beach House, Exact Location Reserved - AD Review

    Southern California Beach House
    Architectural Digest Review

    Of Light and Lines
    Richard Meier’s Take On The Traditional Beach House

    Architecture by Richard Meier & Partners/Interior Design by Rose Tarlow
    Text by Joseph Giovannini/Photography by Scott Frances Published

    Many Southern California beach houses despite the glamorous connotations, ar limited in size by their sliver lots, and their root trace back to intimate wood-frame cottage charming for their modesty. Native Angelenos, if they are seasoned enough, recal from their barefoot childhoods small bungalows and even shacks where resident lived principally on the sandy front porch, facing the crashing Pacific and thos blood-orange sunsets on their way to Japan

    Some of these fragile houses still exist, hanging on for dear life because of unsettling land values, and many have been upgraded and enlarged. The tradition of these informal houses—a few built without foundations, just surfing the sand—seems diametrically opposed to the magnificent white structures by Richard Meier, as spanking crisp as starched dress shirts. The architect, who has offices in Los Angeles as well as in New York, belongs to the tradition of modernist architecture that derives from the sculptural buildings of Le Corbusier, who said that architecture is the magnificent play of volume in light.

    Two expectations, intimate and grand, informal and formal, intersected in the design of a beach house for an art collector, one with an architectural avocation: He has long been active on the boards that have selected museum architects, including The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, and, most recently, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

    In a time-honored Southern California custom as old as the automobile, the client and his wife wanted an intown weekend house, just a short drive away from their main house but at the beach. They asked Meier, fresh from building the Getty Center, who had no hesitation about building a house. “I’ve always done houses and always plan to do them,” he says. The owner adds, “I’ve loved Richard’s architecture, especially the small-scale work and especially the buildings on the ocean.” Meier would have distinguished company: Over the last decade Southern California beaches have seen a new tide of architect-designed houses come in, turning beachfronts into showcases of modernism ... .

    Meier’s client bought one property and the adjacent tear-down house but declined a third when it, too, coincidentally came on the market: Three merged lots would have encouraged overbuilding, but one extra lot eased the 4,280-square-foot house, allowing for a real yard rather than a pair of sideyards each the width of a bowling alley. “I didn’t want to brag about the size of our house,” says the client. “Four bedrooms is more than enough. We’ve used every square inch of the site intelligently.”

    To maximize outdoor space and sun exposure, Meier placed the house along the eastern edge of the yard and counterbalanced the volume with a small guest apartment over a garage on the west side. That left room for a lawn, which he closed off with a high white wall that turns the yard into an outdoor room. “The garden allows us to hold outdoor events for 100 or 200 people,” the client says. “It’s a perfect place to entertain.” Meier, like his spiritual mentor Le Corbusier, believes in the promenade architecturale, the formal procession through the house that in Meier’s buildings is almost ceremonial. He often leads his visitors into the house through a densely packed set of bed bedrooms and service rooms with low ceilings and releases them into a tall space that opens onto a view, but the tight dimensions of the lot blocked the prospect of a long promenade. Working with partner Michael Palladino, Meier determined that the best place for the bedrooms was along the east edge, not across the beachfront. As a result, he changed the spatial details of his approach while keeping the principles.

    Like a storyteller capturing his audience from the initial words, Meier takes hold of visitors from the first step across the property line. At the street he indents a gridded glass wall to create an alcove that envelops the guest in white. The entrance really inaugurates the promenade, which starts with a tease: The door opens to another door at the end of a short walkway. The visitor starts again, with another front door that opens to a straight shot to the ocean. As in many traditional center hall houses, a corridor bisects the house and allows views to the garden out back, only in this case, the garden is blue and expansive, and it moves and shines.

    First-time visitors, entranced by the view, almost sleepwalk past the kitchen on the right and the staircase on the left into a two-story living area, whose two glass walls look out onto the lawn and a long deck facing the ocean. A circa 1945 Calder turns in the double-height space, an airy piece that rotates slowly in the breeze. The house delivers intense color fields: pure green, pure blue, pure white.

    The dramatic formal moment is reserved for the study on the second floor over the kitchen and dining area, where a curvilinear wall wraps the room like a ribbon and pierces the edge of the house to form an outdoor balcony. Meier has composed a highly porous structure built of equal parts solid and void. With Palladino, he achieves an almost Shaker-like simplicity. “We wanted to keep it open and free, with nothing extraneous,” Meier says. Generous volumes of space and white surfaces incandescing in the sun are the only luxuries. Interior designer Rose Tarlow, in her first collaboration with Meier, complemented the sumptuous austerity with straight, simple sofas and club chairs with early-modernist pedigrees.

    Outside, the abundant California sun sculpts every member in shadow. Meier multiplies the shadow lines on the façade with a trellised sunscreen; the curvilinear form of the balcony plays against the strict orthogonal structure. Unlike many overinflated houses that have disregarded the example of older California beach houses, the dimensions are sensible and almost delicate; the house is confident but not overbearing.

    In this context, Meier is a geometric Romantic, playing the rational, manmade order against the natural one. The rigid line, a corollary of the distant horizon, measures the ocean’s movement like a straight edge. As in the great Neoclassical French structures, the house doesn’t try to be grand by being big. Meier succeeds both in being himself and in carrying on the nearly forgotten California tradition of reticence at the beach.

    Copyright © 2008 CondéNet. All rights reserved.

  8. #68

    Default Meier Designed Southern California Beach House, Exact Location Reserved - Interiors

    Southern California Beach House
    Interiors with External Entrance Bridge

    Interior Views
    Architectural Digest (AD)

    Photography by Scott Frances; Michael Moran;
    Courtesy Alfred Lim; Courtesy Richard Meier and Partners;
    Timothy Hursle

    The walkway leads to the study, right, and the guest rooms
    and the master bedroom, left.
    “The glass flooring physically and spatially isolates the study
    within the overall composition,” says partner Palladino
    of the Southern California Beach House.
    - AD

    Photography by Scott Frances

    Untitled, a circa 1945 painted-metal-sheet-and-wire mobile by Alexander Calder,
    hangs in the living area. The interiors were sparingly furnished
    by designer Rose Tarlow. “My objective was to be sure the furnishings
    wouldn’t interfere with the architecture,” she says. Stark carpet.
    - AD

    Photography by Scott Frances

    A glass-floored walkway, above left, and a curved wall, above right,
    create opposing but balanced elements in the entrance hall.
    In typical Meier fashion, the narrow hall ends in a dramatic gesture,
    with the introduction of the dining area,
    two-story living area and expansive view.
    - AD

    Photography by Scott Frances

    Cantilevered over the dining area is the study,
    its sweeping wall acting as a counterpoint
    to the space’s predominantly rigid angles.
    The dining table is a Richard Meier & Partners design.
    - AD

    Photography by Scott Frances

    Two nearly identical master bedrooms are laid out in the house.
    One is on the first floor; the other is directly above it and
    features a private balcony and a leather-upholstered Eero Saarinen
    Womb chair and ottoman. Both rooms have maple beds and tables.
    - AD

    Photography by Scott Frances

    The room is acoustically segregated from the rest of the house. Stark carpet.
    - AD

  9. #69


    Richard Meier's Residential Beach Structures:

    Houses, Compounds and

    What you have seen in these last several posts, is a significant sampling of Richard Meier's residential beach structures. One of the illustrations here, and one that is not, are sources of embarrassment.

    As for the one that is in this thread - Ackerberg House with Addition - it lacks interior shots, because I could not find any on the Internet. Moreover, I was unable to find any overall view of the layout of the compound. But even with these major limitations, at least there are pictures to peruse. House in Palm Beach (Florida) with Addition, is apparently without pictures, except for a few on Richard Meier’s website. The latter cannot be reproduced here.

    House in Palm Beach with Addition, happens to be a personal favourite of mine. That residence spans late 1970s through mid 1990s, and touches on another transitional period in Meier’s thinking about low rise structures – what I count as his third major transition (others see it differently). His website offers small photographs for a glimpse of this beautiful house, I hope you will take a look at those.

    The use of sun screens, breezeways created by bridges, off angles on sun sides, and window bands on private sides, are all very predictable in several of these beach structures. But the curiously named “Beach House in Miami” (which is really a condominium not a house), does not neatly fit these facile descriptions in several key areas. There is no public/private sides as we have come to expect from Richard Meier; the sunscreens are positioned in different ways, and the planar orientation is completely absent. Arguably, the box-like Beach House in Miami is one of his least interesting examples of Meierian form, despite its great attention to detail, both inside and out. One Architectural critic went so far as to describe it as “chunky and … ordinary” for Meier.

    Perhaps the most mainstream of Meier's creations is the Southern California Beach House. It has that cubist dimension in going from one elevation to the next, but beautifully composed and proportioned. It suffers from being too close to the road on one side, and too close to the Ocean on the other. I've read that noise does invade the upper level and tides sometimes lap into the property as a consequence on the Ocean side.
    (I cannot confirm either as being true, but the pictures suggest it.)

    Before we pass on to other aspects of Richard Meier, I need to comment briefly on Neugebauer House in Naples Florida. This is one of the more modest efforts by Meier, but what intrigues me about it is the roof/drainage solution, which borders on the elegant. If you review the article included, the butterfly roof is a great deal more functional than one might expect, given its obvious aesthetic flourish. Water is drained into the structure then redirected, rather than being redirected immediately on the outside.

    One aspect I was unable to show on the Neugebauer House concerned the round garage that is just out of view in these images. You will get a glimpse of it on the site plan / cross-section, however, and what is most interesting is its storage and grass covered driveway.

    - Zephyr

  10. #70


    It is interesting to me that all of these homes are furnished exactly the same way. Was there a fire sale on Barcelona sofas and Calder ceiling sculptures?

  11. #71


    Video Interlude

    Richard Meier at 63
    looks back on the completion of
    Getty Center
    15 January 1998

    One month after the official opening of the Getty Center, Richard Meier was asked to do a retrospective interview with Charlie Rose.

    Fourteen years of work, with major competition to get there, and high-visibility while creating the individual buildings that continued through a number of phases. In fact, Mr. Meier had to endure an earthquake while parts of it were being built, that damaged some of the work. In those cases the work had to be redone.

    In a thread like this, it is not a good idea to spend too much time on one project, even one of this size and interest. You may have noticed that this project was given the least space at the outset. Yes, it was a bit of a tease, and so it will be again here. That is because we had hoped to return to this project repeatedly, but in different ways, as the entire thread unfolds. Upon each return, you will have experienced more of Richard Meier, and become more familiar with his style.

    This is not dry, lecture-like and uninteresting. It is a warm, inviting, and fascinating conversation with a great Architect – a tribute to both Charlie Rose and Richard Meier.

    Set a time aside to view this at your leisure.

    Charlie Rose Interviews Richard Meier 15/01/1998

    To Access YouTube Video

    Courtesy arcspace

    Runtime: 57:14

    Last edited by Zephyr; July 12th, 2008 at 01:48 PM.

  12. #72

    Default Frankfurt Museum of Decorative Arts - Villa Metzler / Richard Meier Addition

    Frankfurt Museum of Decorative Art

    In the late 1970s and on through the 1980s, the German city of Frankfurt, renovated sixteen (16) museums. All were located on the Sachsenhausen stretch of the River Main's embankment. Richard Meier was commissioned to work on one of the sixteen – the Museum für Kunsthandwerk or Museum of Applied Arts. This was essentially an estate, Villa Metzler, that was converted into a museum in the 1960s. Because of its historical significance that goes back to the beginning of the nineteenth century, and its capacity to still house a large portion of an expanding collection to which it longer needed to carry the full burden, there was every reason to retain it in a new configuration.

    When completed in 1985, the Meier addition now meant the reformed Museum consisted of two main structures. Collectively, these two structures were renamed the Museum für Angewandte Kunst or Museum of Decorative Arts. Many people used the simpler MAK, an acronym formed from the name, to refer to this re-configurated museum.

    Below is a visual overview of the relationship between the two main structures:

    Richard Meier & Partners’
    Addition to
    Museum für Angewandte Kunst aka MAK

    (formerly known as
    Museum für Kunsthandwerk)

    Frankfurt-am-Main, Deutschland

    Villa Metzler / Meier Addition

    Above three are courtesy Wikipedia / dontworry

    Connection to Existing Building (Villa Metzler)
    via skybridge

    Courtesy flickr / rick ligthelm © All rights reserved.

    flickr / MARCITECT © All rights reserved.

    Reflection of Villa Metzler in window
    of Richard Meier's addition

    Courtesy flickr / rick ligthelm © All rights reserved.

    Last edited by Zephyr; December 25th, 2008 at 08:17 AM.

  13. #73

    Default Frankfurt Museum of Decorative Arts - Exterior Views and Orientation to Addition

    Richard Meier's
    Addition to
    Frankfurt Museum of Decorative Art

    Exterior Views and Orientation

    Urban form evolved between type and incident, fabric and discontinuity, history and the moment of design. This dialogue strongly influenced the design of the Museum for the Decorative Arts. The museum is emphatically a public and an urban institution, a rejection of modernist isolation of the building as a free-standing object distanced from its surroundings. The scheme connects, responds to, enlarges, and reinforces the public context and the urban fabric.

    The site on the south edge of the Main River is in proximity to several other museum buildings, which together form the Museumsufer, a venerable embankment of buildings fronting the water. The organizational grid of the new complex is derived primarily from two geometries: that of the existing Villa Metzler, a near-perfect cubic volume, and that of the slightly skewed angle of the site's river frontage. The superimposition of these two basic grids generates the design.

    Within, the building is dedicated to the Enlightenment concept that the museum is a place of education as much as of display. The architecture frames the exhibits in multiple ways, allowing the possibility of discovery and surprise as one views objects through different apertures. At the same time the architecture defers to the objects, permitting them to create their own environments and not overwhelming them. While the vocabulary and technology of the building are decisively modern, history is a constant presence in the dialogue between the architecture and its context.

    Richard Meier & Partners Architects LLP

    Front Entrance

    Courtesy e-architect

    East Elevation, Left and Centre

    East Elevation, Centre

    Last two images are from flickr / rick ligthelm © All rights reserved.

    East Elevation, Right - Upper-Storey Detail

    A progression of images:

    West to Garden Fountain from Museum's East Elevation,
    and back again toward East Elevation's right side:

    Last seven images are courtesy e-architect

    Last edited by Zephyr; December 25th, 2008 at 08:19 AM.

  14. #74

    Default Frankfurt Museum of Decorative Arts - Extended Exterior Detail to Addition

    Richard Meier's
    Addition to
    Frankfurt Museum of Decorative Art

    Extended Exterior Detail

    Courtyard Detail

    From the top of this grouping: first image - Courtesy Wikipedia / dontworry; second, third and fourth images - Courtesy e-architect

    Window Detail

    Last two images are courtesy flickr / rick ligthelm © All rights reserved

    Last two images are courtesy e-architect

    Collage of three images are courtesy flickr / rick ligthelm © All rights reserved.

    Last edited by Zephyr; December 25th, 2008 at 08:21 AM.

  15. #75

    Default Frankfurt Museum of Decorative Arts - Interior Views (1 of 2) in Addition

    Richard Meier's
    Addition to
    Frankfurt Museum of Decorative Art

    Interior Views 1 of 2

    Display Areas

    Courtesy flickr / Gabó © All rights reserved

    Courtesy flickr / MARCITECT © All rights reserved

    Courtesy flickr / Gabó © All rights reserved

    Courtesy flickr / MARCITECT © All rights reserved

    Commerzbank (Norman Foster & Partners)
    as seen from Museum Addition

    Courtesy flickr / MARCITECT © All rights reserved

    Last edited by Zephyr; December 25th, 2008 at 08:21 AM.

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