Early International Style
• Develops in 1920s in Europe; sources include commercial building, and
• Named in 1932: exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, New York --
“The International Style”
• Leading architects:
Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.
Style and Ideology
• Celebrates technology
• Universal Style
• Universal space
• Utopian Society
Ludwig Mies van der Rohe – selected quotes
• “Architecture is the will of an epoch translated into space.”
• “Less is More”
• God is in the details”
• “True architecture is always objective and is the expression of the inner
structure of our time, from which it stems.”
• "Technology is far more than a method, it is a world in itself. As a
method it is superior in almost every respect....Whenever technology reaches
its real fulfillment, it transcends into architecture. It is true that
architecture depends on facts, but its real field of activity is in the
realm of significance."
The International Style is the purest and most minimal form of modernism. It
originated in a number of movements from Germany and The Netherlands in the
1920s, especially the Bauhaus but also influenced by de Stijl and the German
Werkbund. Its designs are generally simple prismatic shapes, with flat roofs
and uniform arrangements of windows in bands or grids.
The most common materials in International Style buildings are glass, steel,
aluminum, concrete, and sometimes brick infill. Plaster, travertine marble,
and polished stone are common on the interiors.
The leader of the Bauhaus School and a founder of the International Style
was the architect Walter Gropius. Another Bauhaus architect, Ludwig Mies van
der Rohe, is the most famous and influential figure in the movement. The
Finnish architect Alvar Aalto another famous and original contributor to
A. E. G. High Tension Factory, by Peter Behrens, at Berlin, Germany,
Aalsmeer House, by Bijvoet and Duiker, at Aalsmeer, The Netherlands, 1924.
Airship Hangers, by Eugene Freyssinet, at Orly, near Paris, France, 1916 to
Breslau Office Building, by Hans Poelzig, at Breslau, Germany - now Wroclaw,
Poland, 1911 to 1912.
Centennial Hall, by Max Berg, at Breslau, Poland, 1911 to 1912.
Commodities Exchange, by Hendrik Petrus Berlage, at Amsterdam, The
Netherlands, 1897 to 1909.
Daal en Berg Houses, by Jan Wils, at Den Haag, The Netherlands, 1920.
Dodge House, by Irving Gill, at Los Angeles, 1916.
Einstein Tower, by Erich Mendelsohn, at near Potsdam, Germany, 1919 to 1921.
Fagus Works, by Walter Gropius, at Alfeld an der Leine, Germany, 1911 to
Finnish Pavilion, 1937, by Alvar Aalto, at Paris, France, 1935 to 1937.
Flatiron Building, by Daniel Burnham, at New York, New York, 1902.
Flats at Rue des Amiraux, by Henri Sauvage, at Paris, France, 1923 to 1925.
Goetheanum I, by Rudolf Steiner, at Dornach, near Basel, Switzerland, 1913
Hallidie Building, by Willis Polk, at San Francisco, California, 1918.
Horatio West Court, by Irving Gill, at Santa Monica, California, 1919.
Imperial Hotel, by Frank Lloyd Wright, at Tokyo, Japan, 1916 to 1922.
Karl Marx Hof, by Karl Ehn, at Vienna, Austria, 1930.
Khuner Villa, by Adolf Loos, at on the Kreuzberg, Payerback, Austria, 1930.
Kiefhook Housing estate, by J. J. P. Oud, at Rotterdam, The Netherlands,
Larkin Building, by Frank Lloyd Wright, at Buffalo, New York, 1904 ,
Le Parisien Offices, by G. P. Chedanne, at Paris, France, 1903.
Maison de Verre, by Bijvoet and Chareau, at Paris, France, 1927 to 1932.
National Farmers' Bank, by Louis H. Sullivan, at Owatonna, Minnesota, 1907
Notre Dame du Raincy, by Auguste Perret, at Raincy, France, 1922.
Ozenfant House and Studio, by Le Corbusier, at Paris, France, 1922.
Paimio Sanatorium, by Alvar Aalto, at Paimio, Finland, 1929 to 1933.
Post Office Savings Bank, by Otto Wagner, at Vienna, Austria, 1904 to 1912.
Rue Franklin Apartments, by Auguste Perret, at Paris, France, 1902 to 1904.
Rufer House, by Adolf Loos, at Vienna, Austria, 1922.
Schlesinger and Meyer Department Store, by Louis H. Sullivan, at Chicago,
Illinois, 1899 to 1904.
Schroder House, by Gerrit Rietveld, at Utrecht, The Netherlands, 1924 to
St. Paul's Church, by Louis H. Sullivan, at Cedar Rapids, Iowa, 1910 to
Steiner House, by Adolf Loos, at Vienna, Austria, 1910.
Stoclet Palace, by Josef Hoffmann, at Brussels, or Bruxelles, Belgium, 1905
Storer Residence, by Frank Lloyd Wright, at Los Angeles, California, 1923.
Turku Cemetery Chapel, by Erik Bryggman, at Turku, Finland, 1939 to 1941.
Unity Temple, by Frank Lloyd Wright, at Oak Park, Illinois, 1906.
Villa at Huis ter Heide, by Robert van't Hoff, at near Utrecht, the
Wainwright Building, by Louis H. Sullivan, at St. Louis, Missouri, 1890 to
Arena Building, by Lars Sonck, at Helsinki, Finland, 1923 to 1935.
Worker's Club, by Alvar Aalto, at Jyvaskyla, Finland, 1924.