Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s observation that “less is more” has come to define the Modernist doctrine in architecture, whereby buildings and their components are reduced to simple forms expressed by geometry, largely devoid of ornamentation.
What to look for in a Modernist building:
Asymmetrical and geometric forms, rectangular or cubist shapes
Minimal or an absence of ornamentation
Steel frames and/or reinforced concrete
Explore these galleries from the RIBA Collections illustrating the main features of Modernism.
NOTES: Goldfinger invented his own prefabricated concrete system for the building of Westville Road Primary School and Brandlehow Road Infants School. A crane moved across a concrete platform, dropping the uprights into holes prior to positioning the cross beams into the grooves, as demonstrated in this model.
NOTES: This building comprises three independent types of structure: an in-situ reinforced concrete frame which holds together the main body of the cathedral; the sixteen load-bearing brick or concrete perimeter buildings, and the flat slab of the outdoor podium supported by concrete columns of load-bearing brick walls.
NOTES: The University of Southampton gained full university status with the granting of its Royal Charter in 1952 after which student numbers swelled. Basil Spence was commissioned in 1956 to draw up the masterplan for expansion of the campus and was responsible for many of its faculty buildings and halls of residence.