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News September 2016

Le Corbusier and Oscar Niemeyer sites inscribed on UNESCO World Heritage list, Frank Lloyd Wright nomination passed over

September 7, 2016

At its annual meeting this past July in Istanbul, the World Heritage Committee announced 21 new sites (out of 44 nominations) to be inscribed to the UNESCO World Heritage List. Two of the nominations to land a coveted spot on the list represent Modern architectural heritage: a group listing of 17 architectural works by Le Corbusier, and the Pampulha Modern Ensemble, a garden city project designed by Oscar Niemeyer, Roberto Burle Marx, and other Brazilian Modernists. A third nomination, for a set of ten Frank Lloyd Wright works, was not chosen for listing. This was the first attempt to list the Wright buildings, and would have been the first inclusion of American Modernist works on the list. The nomination process is intensive and can take years and multiple attempts to achieve listed status. Designated sites are considered to have “outstanding universal value.” While listing does not offer any additional protections, it can have added benefits of attracting tourists and boosting funding.

Frank Lloyd Wright sites don’t make cut for UN World Heritage ListChicago Tribune, July 20, 2016.

“Four new sites inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List” whc.unesco.org, July 17, 2016.

Pampulha Modern Ensemble, Belo Horizonte, Brazil © Marcilio Gazzinelli