“The People’s Architects,” 1962

I was reshelving a book in the back of the Woodson recently and I couldn’t resist a smile when I caught a glimpse one of the blandest, most unhelpful titles I’ve ever seen in all my years in the library: “Lecturers.”  I picked it up with, of course, no expectations at all.

And it turned out to be great! It’s a volume about visiting lecturers who came to the architecture department in the early 1960s, begun apparently as part of the academic side of the Semi-centennial celebration in 1962:

There are actually several years worth of lecturers bound into one volume, ending with 1965. Included are short bios but the best thing here are the pictures. They are the original photographs, not reproduced images, which means this is actually a very unusual kind of scrapbook. Many of the photos are straight head shots like this one of a man who knew a couple of things about the construction of buildings at Rice:

Many others, though, are a kind of “action shot” that may be unique to architects–a room full of people gazing intently at something:

The whole thing is just delightful–those architects are so stylish!–and I’m not finished talking about this yet. More to come.

Bonus: Pretty bleak day today.

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7 Responses to “The People’s Architects,” 1962

  1. Ron Witte says:

    Nice piece! Great to see Architecture in this era. Thanks for posting it. Ron (Witte)

  2. Leonard Lane says:

    Bravo! A significant find, Melissa. More please…

  3. marmer01 says:

    I’m with Leonard. More, please.

  4. Guy says:

    I never knew that. Soleri was on campus. But every year there were posters inviting students to his facility in Arizona, Archosanti (sp?).

  5. Very interesting to see the wide variety of dress among the students. I’d be willing to bet, among those pictured, are several who went on to big careers. UH had a similar lecture program in the 1950s, for a pittance one could hear luminaries such as Richard Neutra, Craig Ellwood, Paul Rudolph, Enrico Peressutti, and Bruce Goff, often one after the other for a whole week. Others on the UH series in previous years included Mies van der Rohe, Philip Johnson, Buckminster Fuller, and Eero Saarinen.

  6. marmer01 says:

    So did they play a tape recording of Marshall Shaffer or something?

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