Las flexiones del arquetipo en la obra de Mies van der Rohe

Information about the Thesis

  • Author: Lanuza Jarquín, Carlos
  • Date: 2015
  • Director: Armesto, Antonio
  • University: Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya
  • School or Faculty: ETSA Barcelona
  • Department: Departament de Projectes Arquitectònics
  • Source: Tesis Doctorales en Red


From the projects developed by Mies in 1929 - the Tugendhat house and the German Pavilion for the Universal Exposition in Barcelona - we could say that it is showed in a more evident way a phase of experimentation, in which he stands apart from his contemporaries. For example, in these projects he uses materials never used before that became recurrent such as marble, onyx and glass. This way of doing architecture that was being forged through years kept as main goal its own refinement using limited and self-imposed means that let him create a particular universe. In addition, it must be said that what characterized his architecture and work philosophy, is precisely his insistence in the use of the same means, improved and adapted in each project. Continuing with this logic, we maintain that is in the latest projects developed by Mies in which this fanguage" is showed in the clearest way, and this thesis study. This language pretends to be universal and is used in these projects in spite of the site where are placed and the program that hold; in this manner we can find office projects with similar characteristics placed in England, Brazil or the United States, that also shared similarities with museum or educational projects located in dissimilar places. We have chosen as object of analysis the projects developed in the period between 1954 and 1969; this period spans through the last fifteen years of Miess life as an architect and includes projects developed by him but built after his death. We take the classification made by Peter Carter, collaborator in Mies van der Rohe's office that worked beside him in the last years before his death and that in his book Mies van der Rohe at Work classified Mies's projects by its mechanic structure, which in the case of Mies's work, also correspond with its spatial structure: high-rise skeleton frame buildings, low-rise skeleton frame buildings and clear span buildings. Through the analysis of the chosen projects, and understanding each group defined by Carter as an archetype, this thesis aims to bear out the statement that the same archetype is capable of responding to different programs and places in an effective way. The projects are studied in a way that the idea of archetype that each one has implicit is revealed alongside the values that each one promote. The constancy of a same way of doing architecture, reflected in the archetypes, questions sorne paradigms, preconceived ideas and prejudices on decisions made while developing architecture projects. lt is of our interest to know what are the operations made by Mies that allow him to use the same archetype in different conditions, how from the generality of the archetype he's able to generate a spectrum of strategies that transform each case in a singular project, without losing sight of a system that surround all the projects and that can even surpass the archetype itself, transcending the particularities that each project impose

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