A subversive look at postmodern architecture through its ephemera
Postmodern architecture was characterized by four dominant beliefs: that architecture was distinct from the materiality of things; that history had an operative role to play in the present; that the emergence of a culture dominated by images enabled architects to equate drawing with authorship; and that architecture could secure its status among the arts by staking a claim to the exhibition space. While each strand of this belief system had deep historical roots, the expanding reach of American corporations played a crucial role in transforming these ideas into what was then termed the first global style.
In this volume, Sylvia Lavin looks at a series of canonical buildings of the late 20th century alongside archival materials―invoices, surveys, exhibition posters, reproduced models, travel photography, Xeroxed drawings―from the CCA and other museum collections that represent the work of Peter Eisenman, Aldo Rossi, Venturi Scott Brown Associates, Vincent Scully, Michael Graves, James Stirling, Michael Hejduk, Cedric Price and others.
Sylvia Lavin is Professor of Architectural History and Theory at UCLA.