You may be familiar with their striking furniture, but some of the world’s most famous designers also created historic mid-century modern homes as well. Proving that genius never sleeps, here are two amazing homes inspired by the mid-century era. Designed by two masters of the craft, they reflect the ideals of the post-war movement that set forth a new and modern world of design that spanned from the late twenties all the way through to the sixties.
The Gropius House
Built: 1937 in Lincoln, Massachusetts
Often cited as a founding father of the Bauhaus movement, WalterGropius was director of the famed Bauhaus school for many years, and during his time there, worked with and inspired contemporaries such as Mies van der Rohe (who also would become a director of the school in its later years), Le Corbusier and more. Just before World War II broke out, the school was forced to close due to pressure from the Nazi regime, and Gropius and many of his colleagues (including van de Rohe) fled to the United States where they went on to create some of their greatest work.
A brilliant man that led the way for many young artists during a time of uncertainty, he continued to inspire minds while in the U.S., teaching at the Harvard Graduate School of Design in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Gropius House was designed for his family, and shows some clear Bauhaus aesthetics with details such as white surfaces and ribbon windows. Upon close assessment though, many argue that it also has strong elements of his adopted country’s regional tastes. Either way, the home is a historic part of the mid-century modern movement and is still greatly admired to this day.
The Farnsworth House
Built: 1951 in Plano, Illinois
Another pioneer of the mid-century modern movement, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe created some of the world’s most sought after furniture and architectural designs. Well known for his famed Barcelona Chair, he, like Gropius, also fled to the United States before the start of World War II. He chose Chicago, Illinois as his base and taught students at the Illinois Institute of Technology (known as the Armour Institute of Technology back then). Mies, as was often called by his close friends, built some of the most influential office and urban buildings in the world throughout his lifetime, among them the Seagram building in New York, and the Barcelona Pavilion in Barcelona (where he first introduced his now legendary Barcelona chair). Though not nearly as large as his buildings, van der Rohe’s Farnsworth house is just as awe inspiring.
The Farnsworth House was built next to the Fox River, just west of Chicago, and shows his minimalist eye for open spaces, clean lines and plenty of glass. Unfortunately, the woman who commissioned van der Rohe to design the house, Dr. Edith Farnsworth, didn’t appreciate his aesthetic (which was clearly ahead of its time) and sued him, famously stating, “Less is not more. It is simply less!” These days however, most scholars agree that the house is a prime example of mid-century innovation and use of materials – a feat unsurprising for someone of van der Rohe’s caliber. Made with the intention to explore people, shelter and nature, the house has been described as “sublime,” “a temple hovering between heaven and earth,” and a “poem.” It is one of the most iconic mid-century modern houses ever built, and will certainly be recognized as such for many more decades.
While you may not be able to live in a house built by some of the greats, you certainly can live in a house that features unparalleled reproductions of their timeless furniture pieces. Whether it’s van der Rohe’s Barcelona Chair or hisBarcelona Day Bed, Rove Concepts is proud to feature the best of the best made with only the highest quality Italian Aniline leathers, Danish Boucle wools and more.
Too see Rove Concept’s eclectic selection, click here: www.roveconcepts.com.8720