Posted by Jim on July 21, 2003 at 09:45:54:
In Reply to: Centre For Architecture - Thesis posted by Mainak on July 18, 2003 at 12:07:20:
I don't know of any real Center or museum of Architecture per se, but I do know that there are collections of architectural drawings, renderings, etc. such as that at the Wisconsin Architectural Archive housed in the Milwaukee Public Library (view of it at: http://people.msoe.edu/~reyer/mke/1897a.html )
and their phone number and schedule of operation can be obtained at the web site for the library: www.mpl.org
The Archive does not have regular hours as far as I know, but it does have thousands of drawings of structures both in Wis. and elsewhere according to what an architect (or his survivors) has donated to them. They also have some photos and building artifacts. The large room is headed by an elderly local architect: Tom Eschweiler. He, or the Humanities Librarian (who provides oversight when he is not there) can send you a brochure about the Archive if you request.
Schools of architecture around the country and the world most likely have collections of drawings, renderings, models and other data that may serve as the effective Museum of architecture at large. As to whether you should design such a thing, I guess you should find a WEALTHY patron, first! Probably any city would welcome such a 'museum' provided that they do not have to go to any expense for it. If you predicate building such with public funds, it is HIGHLY unlikely to arise anywhere in the USA. Special institutions, such as The Frank Lloyd Wright Fellowship at Taliesen in Spring Green Wis., do maintain a sort of mueseum of a man's works, and possibly other such exist for other architects elsewhere.
Thus, such a thesis topic would have to be something like: "Resolved: A Museum Center of the Architecture of Man Should Be Built." Most any architect would accept that statement, but the difficulty lies in designing and funding one! Which period of architectural history is the exterior to represent, and will the modernists do anythihg but sneer at any period design? Would the worshipers of 'Corbu' and his ilk rise up and laugh down any effort not totally in praise of him? Would anyone thus have the courage to go beyond 'Le Moderne' and represent the other nations and periods fully, and if so, who would pay for it, and whose name would be upon it? If you have such courage, you might ask noted author Tom Wolfe (who wrote the landmark book: "From Bauhaus To Our House") to write the Introduction to your effort to break free of the Modernists in the design and content of your proposed Center For Architecture.
One way you might pay for it is to make it into a building products and materials showcase such as already exist for builders in many cities, but then how much museum would it become as opposed to how much sales floor? And since money always rules, how long would it be before any exhibits were merely forgotten background materials as the 'exhibitors' became salesmen?!
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