John Jacobus

  • New Forms in Architecture

    THE SIGN LANGUAGE OF 20th-century architecture during the first forty-odd years of its existence was predominantly concerned with flat surfaces and cubic volumes—and, for a while, the simpler the combination the better. There were at least three basic motivations on the form-finding level: First came the desire to slough off the unwieldy decorative accretions of eclecticism and even of such early modernist movements as Art Nouveau, thereby initiating a search for a least common denominator. Second was the adoption of certain formal and spatial devices from post-Cubist and abstract painting,

  • Beyond the Seagram Building . . . ARCHITECTURE NOW

    THE PASSING OF GREAT ARTISTS or architects (I have in mind the death of Le Corbusier last summer) does not, strictly speaking, mark the end of an era or the beginning of a new one, except, perhaps in the fervid imagination of melodramatic critics. Far more important as stylistic landmarks are the passages from creative adolescence to maturity in the careers of such heroic figures. In this connection, the major threshold over which Le Corbusier significantly assisted modern architecture was crossed in the late 1920s with the maturing of his “machine era” manner of stucco and glass—a vital component