Wednesday, December 26, 2012

In praise of... Oscar Niemeyer


Back in March I wrote a blog post about the architect Mies van der Rohe - this blog is (mostly) about computing, yet that post is the 4th most viewed post on this blog. I really don't know why, perhaps geeks like modern architecture. So I figured I'd give another giant of modernist architecture some praise - Oscar Niemeyer
    A few years ago I was invited to lecture in Brazil and as part of the trip went to the capital Brasilia - their purpose built capital city, in the middle of nowhere, designed by Oscar Niemeyer. The entire city was designed to look like a plane from the air; with Parliament where the cockpit is, government ministries down the fuselage and residential areas in the wings. Although much of the original design ethos has been lost to infill development the set piece buildings in the heart of the city are wonderful examples of modernist architecture. It was thrilling to see so many beautiful buildings in one space. Oscar Niemeyer passed away in June aged 104.