Curious Minds: Starchitects


Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Mon, Jan 15, 2018 10:00 AM
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Mon, Jan 22, 2018 10:00 AM
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Mon, Jan 29, 2018 10:00 AM
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Mon, Feb 12, 2018 10:00 AM
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Mon, Feb 19, 2018 10:00 AM
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Mon, Feb 26, 2018 10:00 AM


Capture the creative spirit of the 20th century with this lively survey of the visionaries who reinvented modern architecture. As the USA gradually evolved into a modern state, its burgeoning cities attracted brilliant builders and designers like Louis Sullivan, Frederick Law Olmsted, and one of Sullivan’s most gifted—and controversial—apprentices, Frank Lloyd Wright. Architects immigrating to America also began to reimagine the country’s homes and skylines: Walter Gropius; Mies van der Rohe; and especially the Canadian expat Frank Gehry. With the emergence of Louis Kahn, Eero Saarinen, Philip Johnson, and the decidedly“oddball” Bucky Fuller, exciting new forms and aesthetics took shape, resulting in buildings that continue to amaze and inspire us today.

This course will be led by Peter Harris, the former assistant dean of the Faculty of Arts and Science of the University of Toronto. A former senior lecturer in the University's German Department, Dr. Harris has also served as a special lecturer in the new Vic One Program at Victoria College. In these different capacities, he has lectured on topics ranging from German Film to Expo '58, from the German Reichstag Building to Rosie the Riveter.

Doors will open one hour before the first class.
Registrants will receive supplementary materials in advance of their first class.

Mondays, January 15 - February 26
*Please note: no class February 5.

January 15: Chicago leads the way.
Louis Sullivan is often called“the Father of American Skyscrapers”. We look at some of his pathbreaking buildings in Chicago. Daniel Burnham and Frederick Law Olmsted collaborate on the monumental Chicago World's Fair in 1893.

January 22: Frank Lloyd Wright's debut.
Frank Lloyd Wright initially worked for Louis Sullivan, but was fired for his moonlighting activities. He quickly made a name for himself with his remarkable buildings in Oak Park, Chicago, then in Buffalo, with the famous Martin House and the Larkin Office Building.

January 29: Frank Lloyd Wright's career at its Zenith
Wright continued with an amazingly prolific career through the 20’s and 30’s, including such landmark structures as the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo and – perhaps his most famous achievement - Fallingwater

February 12: From MacDonald’s Arches to Buckie's Domes
We take a brief look at the curious phenomenon of “Googie”, the Postwar West Coast coffee-shop style famous for its flamboyant neon signs and space-age architecture. We will also look at the remarkable contributions of Louis Kahn (the Salk Institute complex in California), and Buckminster Fuller (the geodesic dome).

February 19: Two versions of “modern”
The International style arrived in America with a bang, in the persons of Mies van der Rohe, Walter Gropius, and Marcel Breuer, all Bauhaus refugees from Nazi Germany (think: the Seagram Building, and the Met Breuer). The American Philip Johnson shows close affinities with van der Rohe, in his Glass House. The soaring curves of the TWA Terminal by Eero Saarinen offer a dynamic alternative to Internationalism.

Corresponding Film Screening: Sketches of Frank Gehry

Monday, February 19 - 6:00 PM 

February 26: Breaking the Mold: Postmodernism Postmodernists
Philip Johnson (yup, that same guy as above!) and Robert Venturi offer startling breaks from tradition. And Frank Gehry begins his swift rise to international stardom.

Corresponding Film Screening: Sketches of Frank Gehry

Monday, February 26 - 1:00 PM 

Additional Information

Six-week course: $63 (Members: $54, $42, Free) - REGISTER NOW
Single class: $21 (Members: $17, $14, Free)

See all Curious Minds courses for Winter 2018

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