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News April 2020

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In December 2019, New York Philharmonic and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts publicly announced “Working in Concert,” a joint project for the “reimagination of David Geffen Hall.” The performance venue, known as Avery Fisher Hall for most of its 58 years, was designed by Max Abramovitz (1908–2004) and completed in 1962 as one of the original trio of Lincoln Center buildings fronting the plaza. The first thing that registered with many fans of the symphony’s hall upon seeing the plan was that the “Lippold” was not coming back. The Lippold being Orpheus and Apollo, the five-ton site-specific sculpture of gold toned Muntz metal bars suspended on 450 thread-like wires within the hall’s four-story, Grand Promenade atrium. Commissioned by Abramovitz and created by Richard Lippold (1915–2002) as an integral part of the hall’s original design, Lincoln Center announced in 2014 that the celebrated work was being “removed temporarily for maintenance and conservation.” DOCOMOMO US/New York Tri-State’s position is that several aspects of the proposed public spaces redesign eliminate or substantially alter defining elements of the original design and are therefore inappropriate and should be reconsidered.... MORE

Richard Lippold’s Orpheus and Apollo within the Grand Promenade, prior to 2014. Photo: © Edward Crimmins / Flickr

In this MetroTimes article, Ana Gavrilovska examines the life of one of the last living mid-century designers, Ruth Adler Schnee. She cultivated her career against many odds and at 96 years old, Adler Schnee recounts her life and influence in modernism.... MORE

Ruth Adler Schnee working with designs. Photo courtesy of Detroit MetroTimes.

For the second time since 1998, Isamu Noguchi’s (1904–1988) site-specific installation “a landscape of clouds” (1957) is under the threat of removal. Brookfield Properties, the developers of 666 Fifth Avenue, home to Noguchi’s work, has building renovation plans that include dismantling the piece. ... MORE

The artwork in the lobby, designed in 1957, which Noguchi called “a landscape of clouds.”Credit...The Isamu Noguchi Foundation and Garden Museum/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; The New York Times.

Known worldwide for giving graphic definition to the postwar age, Saul Steinberg (1914–1999) was renowned for the covers, drawings, and cartoons that appeared in The New Yorker for nearly six decades. Virtually explore this exhibition at the Parrish Art Museum from the comfort of your own home.... MORE

Saul Steinberg (American, born Romania, 1914–1999), Untitled, 1980. Colored pencil, pastel, pencil, crayon and rubber stamp on paper (Strathmore) folded in half. Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, N.Y., Gift of the Saul Steinberg Foundation © 2019 Saul Steinberg Foundation/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

From across the pond, the Modernist Society in Manchester, UK, alerts us to the special talents of member Tony Bolton—building signature modernist sites in Legos. See dozens on his Instagram site for inspiration.... MORE

Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s Farnsworth House, 1951. Photo courtesy of Tony Bolton and the-modernist.org.

Take a look at these stunning modernist churches from around the world. French photographer Thibaud Poirier shares over 30 beautiful photos for your viewing pleasure. ... MORE

Saint Mary of the Assumption, San Francisco (Pier Luigi Nervi and Pietro Belluschi, 1971) Photo courtesy of Thibaud Poirier.

Ten curators from MoMA’s Department of Architecture and Design share their favorite films in which architecture and design have more than supporting roles. With short descriptions and streaming sources for each—and trailers for many—the post is a fine isolation escape resource.... MORE

Excerpt from Jacques Tati's “Playtime” 1967. Photo courtesy of MoMA.org.