• Bergdoll’s seminal writing on Mies and his spatial construct argue that Mies developed the architektonischer Garten idea into a specific model of spatial configuration (Bergdoll 2001, 66-105), as he sought a sense of freedom in spatial composition not only for interior but also between interior and exterior. Specifically, Mies’s pre-World War I work, such as the Riehl House (1907), Perls House (1911-2), Wolf House (1926), Esters & Lange House (1927-30), and the Tugendhat House (1928-30), constantly employed multiple architektonischer Garten devices, namely, deliberately framed landscape views, exedra bench tied to certain vantage points, and vine-covered pergola as emblems of the harmonious unity of house and garden. Calling for a tight spatial interweaving relationship between interior space and exterior garden, all of these treatments were exploited by Karl Friedrich Schinkel (1781-1841) and Peter Joseph Lenné (1789-1866), clearly emulated by Mies, and documented by Muthesius.
  • Moreover, while teaching at the Bauhaus in the 30s, Mies developed his court-house concept, where rooms and gardens were integrated as if the later became small outdoor “rooms” defined by perimeter walls that mark the boundary between the house and the city. He later brought this refined housing strategy to America, which has been described as “the furthest development of Mies’s ‘court-house’ scheme of 1931” by Riley in her paper on Mies’s court-house in this book (330).
  • In addition to Bergdoll and Riley’s essays, Vittorio Magnago Lampugnani studied Berlin’s urban milieu in relation to Mies’s theoretical and competition projects. Detlef Mertins studied Mies’s interaction with Dada, de Stijl, and other radical groups, and Wolf Tegethoff studies how peculiarly Prussian tendencies in classicism informed Mies’s early work. Fritz Neumeyer recounted the launch of Mies’s career. Jan Maruhn contributed a study of Mies’s relations with art-collecting clients. Andres Lepik extended the recent scholarly attention generated by Mies’s exceptional photomontages. Wallis Miller analyzed Mies’s recurring efforts at exhibition design, including a substantive discussion of Reich’s contribution within this one area of Mies’s oeuvre. Lastly, Rosemarie Haag Bletter argued that Expressionism does not disappear from Mies’s German work but continues through his use of “dark” transparency. SI think it is a shame that this book (exhibition) didn’t include Mies’s interior projects, especially his collaboration with Lilly Reich.
Posted by:Liyang DING

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