The Tugendhat Photographs
Chapter 3 contrasts this proposition with the abstraction found in Weimar architectural photographs, using Mies’s Tugendhat House (1930) in Brno (Czech Republic) as an example. These images created an alternative “photographic architecture,” through skillful composition and by affecting viewers’ spatial apprehension of size, proportion, materiality, and color. The chapter shows how architectural photography replaced the activated visual experience narrated in Chapter 2 with two-dimensional compositional abstraction that projected three dimensions virtually, giving rise to a second, photographic version of the building that also stood on a site in Brno. By contrasting works by the same architect, these two chapters show two alternate ways that photography and new media affected architectural practice within the framework of the Weimar Republic. The experiments of Weimar abstract architecture were largely lost to view in the wake of 1933; the effects of architectural photography were, by contrasting, longstanding and influential.
Keywords: architectural photography, modern architecture, architectural montage, architectural abstraction, pictorial architecture, visual culture, virtual space, postwar abstraction, New Brutalism, postmodernism
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