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Proceedings Paper

Color in present culture of European architecture
Author(s): Verena M. Schindler
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Paper Abstract

The influential architect Le Corbusier (1887 - 1965) was also involved in the adventure of contemporary painting, and color occupied half of his day, during twenty years, as he revealed in a study entitled 'Architectural Polychromy' written in the early thirties and recently published in 1997. In the present, contemporary architects in Central Europe are dealing with color in quite a different and exceptional way: most of them engage the artist to collaborate with them in their architectural projects. If painting is concerned with the interaction of color in the two-dimensional plane, architecture is deeply dependent on light and space, and deals entirely with the three- dimensional environment and its human perception. In the 1990s, the way architects and artists employed color in architecture was so striking that color offered a key to larger discussions and opened up an interesting aspect of architectural practice. It must be remembered that recent housing projects, such as the housing estate Pilotengasse in Vienna, Gigon & Guyer's Broelberg in Kilchberg (with Harald F. Muller), next to Zurich, and their Sport Center in Davos (with Adrian Schiess), Jean Nouvel's Cultural and Congress Center in Lucerne, or Sauerbruch & Hutton's Photonic Center and their GSW office building in Berlin have all been contributing to free color from its unconscious and dormant role. These works all impart qualities to color in architecture that were hitherto reserved to other materials and fields: they define the aspects of the interaction of visual and physical space, of materialization of volumes, and of the expression of wealth and luxury.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 June 2002
PDF: 4 pages
Proc. SPIE 4421, 9th Congress of the International Colour Association, (6 June 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.464617
Show Author Affiliations
Verena M. Schindler, Univ. of Zurich (Switzerland)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4421:
9th Congress of the International Colour Association
Robert Chung; Allan Rodrigues, Editor(s)

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