The Rationalist Reader incorporates the first documentary collection of writing on rationalism in twentieth century architecture, providing an accessible introduction to the subject, direct insight into the thinking of individual architects and their critics, and a current re-evaluation of the context from which they emerged.
Key texts, including new translations, are placed within a wider historical and philosophical context by Alan Colquhoun, and considered with particular reference to nineteenth century architectural theory by Charles Rattray. Two separate documentary sections address the thinking behind rationalist architecture within the Modern Movement and ‘Rational Architecture’ as its counterpart within Neo-rationalism. German architectural historian Thilo Hilpert and Dutch architect and critic Henk Engel, provide introductions to the two periods, while Cambridge historian Nicholas Bullock contributes a linking piece focused on French experience post-war. A postscript samples retrospective views.
The two sets of ‘documents’, identified with the periods 1920–1940 and 1960–1990, are arranged under comparative headings, allowing the reader to establish correspondences between the key themes of rationalist architecture.
When the ‘historical’ experience of many young architects is confined to ‘masters’ and ‘iconic buildings’ located within the general flux of modernity, here the trajectory of rationalism in twentieth century architecture is seen to veer between a scientific methodology identified with generic models, and a formal paradigm of typological consistency. With its immediate philosophical origins in Enlightenment culture, the development of rationalism in nineteenth century architecture prefaced the volatility of later interpretations of rationalist architecture outlined and documented in this book.
Table of Contents
Preface Andrew Peckham and Torsten Schmiedeknecht Introduction The Rationalist Legacy: Complement and Contradiction Andrew Peckham and Torsten Schmiedeknecht Rationalism: A Philosophical Concept in Architecture (1987) Alan Colquhoun Rationalist Tendencies in Nineteenth-century Architecture Charles Rattray Documents One 1920-1940 The Architects of Modernism and their Texts: An Introduction to the History of Modern Architecture 1922-1934 Thilo Hilpert Rationalist Architecture: Type-Form and History 1. The Foundations and Development of Architecture (1908) H. P. Berlage 2. Architecture (1910) Adolf Loos 3. Toward an Architecture (1923) Le Corbusier 4. Regarding Economy (1924) Adolf Loos 5. Yes and No Confessions of an Architect (1925) J. J. P. Oud 6. Type-Needs Type-Furniture (1925) Le Corbusier 7. Architecture (1926) Gruppo 7 8. The Modern Museum (1929) August Perret 9. The Mirror of Rational Architecture (1931) Carlo Enrico Rava 10. An Architectural Programme (1933) Piero Bottoni 11. Collective Needs and Architecture (1935) August Perret 12. Rural Architecture in Italy (1936) Guiseppe Pagano and Guarniero Daniel 13. Architecture’s Relationship to Typification (1956) Hans Schmidt The New City 14. Die Grosstadt (1911) Otto Wagner 15. The City of Tomorrow and its Planning (1925) Le Corbusier 16. Großstadtarchitektur (1927) Ludwig Hilberseimer 17. From the Athens Charter (1933 CIAM / Le Corbusier 18. The Athens Charter: Conclusions (1933) CIAM / Le Corbusier The Logic of Construction – Rationalization 19. Modern Architecture (1896) Otto Wagner 20. The Modern Functional Building (1923) Adolf Behne 21. Office Building (1923) Mies van der Rohe 22. Building (1923) Mies van der Rohe 23. Construction and Form (1924) Ludwig Hilberseimer 24. Five Points Towards a New Architecture (1926) Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret 25. Remarks on my Block of Flats (1927) Mies van der Rohe 26. La Sarraz Declaration (1928) CIAM (Congrès Internationaux d’Architecture Moderne) 27. What would Concrete, What would Steel be Without Mirror Glass (1933) Mies van der Rohe 28. Structure and Architecture (1935) Giuseppe Pagano 29. The New Architecture and the Bauhaus (1935) Walter Gropius Industrial Production and the Collective 30. Mass Produced Buildings (1924) Le Corbusier 31. Industrial Building (1924) Mies van der Rohe 32. Collective Design (1924) Mart Stam 33. Principles of Bauhaus Production Dessau (1926) Walter Gropius 34. The New World (1926) Hannes Meyer 35. Building (1928) Hannes Meyer Rationalism in Retrospect 36. Theory and Design in the First Machine Age (1960) Reyner Banham 37. Modular Co-ordination in Architecture (1964) Hans Schmidt 38. The Fine Red Thread of Italian Rationalism (1978) Vittorio Gregotti 39. Building Modern Italy (1988) Dennis Doordan 40. Polemical Rationalism (1991) Richard Etlin 41. Rationalism, Mediterraneità, and the Vernacular (2010) Michelangelo Sabatino 42. Architecture for Barbarians – Ludwig Hilberseimer and the Rise of the Generic City (2011) Pier Vittorio Aureli 43. Everything in the State, Nothing against the State’: Corporative Urbanism and Rationalist Architecture in Fascist Italy (2012) David Rifkind Addendum Architecture, Rationalism and Reconstruction: The Example of France 1945-55 Nicholas Bullock Documents Two 1960-1990 The Neo-rationalist Perspective Henk Engel Neo-rationalism: Type and Typology 44. Architecture and Ideology (1957) Giulio Carlo Argan 45. On the Typology of Architecture (1962) Giulio Carlo Argan 46. The Question of Style (1969) Giorgio Grassi 47. The New Architecture and the Avantgarde (1973) Massimo Scolari 48. The Third Typology (1978) Anthony Vidler 49. Small Manifesto (1978) Bernard Huet 50. Introduction: Motives and Propositions (1979) Gianfranco Caniggia and Gian Luigi Maffei 51. Neo-Rationalism and Figuration (1984) Ignasi Sola-Morales 52. Premises for the Resumption of the Discussion of Typology (1986) Werner Oechslin 53. Typological Theories in Architectural Design (1993) Micha Bandini 54. Type and the Possibility of an Architectural Scholarship (1994) Guido Francescato Architecture and the City 55. The Architecture of the City (1966) Aldo Rossi 56. The Reconstruction of the City (1978) Leon Krier 57. Typological and Morphological Elements of the Concept of Urban Space (1979) Rob Krier 58. Formal objectivity in urban design and architecture as an aspect of rational planning (1979) Carel Weeber Logical Construction and Autonomy 59. The Logical Construction of Architecture (1967)Giorgio Grassi 60. Elements and Construction: A Note on the Architecture of Aldo Rossi (1970) Ezio Bonfanti 61. Introduction (1974) Aldo Rossi 62. Design Motivations (1975) Luigi Snozzi 63. Architecture as Craft (1979) Giorgio Grassi 64. Architecture’s Right to an Autonomous Language (1979) Oswald Mathias Ungers 65. The Necessity for Uselessness. Remarks on a Conversation. (1987)