A Visual Guide to Understanding Mid-Century Modern Architecture
October 22nd, 2013 | by The Update
Although most of us recognize names like Frank Lloyd Wright and Philip Johnson, we largely are at a loss as to what characterizes a mid-century modern home. To help clear up the confusion we’ve crafted a simple guide complete with lots of visuals. Plus, you’ll get a little boost of confidence before you go on the Mid-Century Modern Tour this Saturday, October 26!)
Mid-century modern key features cheat sheet:
- Embracing Nature: The design accentuates the beauty of nature through walls of windows, views of the surrounding landscape used as focal points for living areas, and multiple entrances and exits. This attempt to highlight the natural environment blurs the barriers between indoor and outdoor living, endorsing an appreciation and awe of nature. Ex. Frank Lloyd Wright’s Falling Water House
- Pervasive Flat Planes. Rigorous use of flat geometric planes, lines, and squares invade nearly every visual aspect of mid-century modern design. Even roofs buck tradition by embracing flat construction over gable.
- Expansive windows. Large glass window panes and doors flood natural light to all of the rooms. Ex. The Philip Johnson Glass House.
- Various Elevations. Split-level spaces rank paramount in mid-century moderns through a host of expressions—multiple, open staircases, partial walls, and built-ins reinforce a feeling of constantly changing elevations.