Haunted by the Legacy of Miesian Modernism

This Live Event happened on October 31, 2019 (6:00pm - 8:00pm EST)

Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Philip Johnson forged one of the most fascinating, fruitful, and prolific partnerships in the history of Modernism. The relationship between the German master and the American curator-architect, 20 years his junior, spanned nearly four decades, producing iconic projects, exhibitions, and buildings.

Nothing illustrates the story of this affiliation so eloquently as a pair of glass structures the two designers created in the years following WWII: the Farnsworth House in Plano, Illinois by Mies; and the Glass House in New Canaan, Connecticut by Johnson. Equally provocative and daring, the two masterworks are largely considered temples of American residential Modernism and evoke extreme architectural order, quality, and perfection. Similar in many ways, yet sufficiently different to evince what aesthetically separates them, these two modern landmarks are today both owned and operated by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

This evening’s discussion will illuminate the combined histories behind the creation of the Glass House and the Farnsworth House, among the most admired and influential residences in the history of modern architecture. It will especially explore the philosophy that governed the architecture of both houses, the story of the relationship between Mies and Johnson and the Miesian legacy overall.

Scott Mehaffey, Executive Director, Farnsworth House
Hilary Lewis, Chief Curator & Creative Director, The Glass House

Dr. Daniella Ohad, Design Historian


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Founded in 1857, AIA New York is the oldest and largest chapter of the American Institute of Architects. The Chapter's members include over 5,000 practicing architects, allied professionals, students, and public members interested in architecture and design. AIA New York is dedicated to three goals: design excellence, public outreach, and professional development. Learn more at www.aiany.org