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Thursday, October 18, 2018

#MiesVanDerRohe’s Villa #Tugendhat in the #Czech city of #Brno remains an Ultramodern Classic

Tour an Ultramodern 1930 Villa by Mies van der Rohe | The Study
At Villa Tugendhat in the Czech city of Brno, Mies van der Rohe created some of his most iconic furniture pieces. 

Along with its then-unprecedented construction system, the materials used-Macassar Ebony, Palisander-are rare and exotic. 

The technical facilities-with heating, cooling and retractable windows-remain exceptional even for a contemporary house.

Tour an Ultramodern 1930 Villa by Mies van der Rohe

While designing Villa Tugendhat, the visionary architect also created some of his most iconic furniture pieces.

by Joann Plockova | Photos by David Zidlicky

The rear exterior of Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat in Brno

Mies van der Rohe designed Villa Tugendhat (shown here from the back) in the Czech city of Brno for Grete and Fritz Tugendhat. All photos © David Zidlicky

On New Year's Eve 1928, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe presented the completed plans for a villa he was commissioned to design for a newly married couple in the Czech city of Brno. Grete and Fritz Tugendhat, both locals from affluent German-speaking Jewish families, were intrigued by a series of crosses they saw on the architect's floor plan.

"For the first time in the history of architecture, a steel supporting structure in the form of cross-shaped columns was used in a private residence," says architect Iveta Cerna, "which Mies van der Rohe used to create a unique spatial concept of the interior."

Today, Cerna is the director of Villa Tugendhat: the couple's commissioned home and now one of the Czech Republic's 12 UNESCO heritage sites. "There are many reasons why the house remains relevant even 87 years after its construction," Cerna says.

Along with its then-unprecedented construction system, "the materials used are rare and exotic. Also worth mentioning are the technical facilities, which remain exceptional even for a contemporary house. Last but not least, the story of Villa Tugendhat and its destiny throughout history is also why many people want to see this unique piece of architecture."

Unassuming, yet striking from its street-facing side, the three-level villa sits on a sloped plot that was part of Grete's parents' Low-Beer Villa property. Following Grete's marriage to Fritz, her father gifted the upper-level portion of the land to his daughter and financed the home's construction. Grete had come to appreciate Mies van der Rohe's work while living in Germany, during her first marriage. The architect gladly accepted the commission, appreciating the site's exclusive position and expansive views of the city.

The front of Villa Tugendhat

The house's front facade

Sadly, the couple's time inhabiting the home with their three children was short lived. In 1938, just eight years after they took up residence, they were forced to emigrate. Seized by the Gestapo in 1939, the home then became property of the German Reich in 1942.

It suffered structural changes and then massive damage in 1945, when it was occupied by a cavalry unit of the Red Army, who used the main living area as a horse stable. The main living area's massive glazed windows were also broken as a result of pressure waves from air raids. The freestanding furniture was removed and the curved Macassar ebony partition went amiss.

Villa Tugendhat underwent its first significant reconstruction effort in 1980, but it wasn't until a meticulous renovation project between 2010 and 2012 that the home was sensitively restored to its original state. Today, visitors travel from all corners of the globe to see Mies's masterpiece, which includes a flowing spatial plan, impeccable attention to detail and an emphasis on indoor-outdoor living. Before you have the chance to see Villa Tugendhat for yourself (which needs to be booked months in advance), here's a tour of some of the highlights.


Entryway of Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat

The entrance hall is paved in Italian travertine floors and features a rounded milk-glazed wall that bathe the space in natural light.

Main Living Area

Main living area of Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat

It's truly a "wow" moment to descend the spiral staircase from the entry hall. Villa Tugenhdat's 2,550-square-foot main living area is the center of the home and where Mies's flowing arrangement is fully realized. Divisions of space are loosely created by the curved Macassar partition and the veined onyx wall. The latter, mined in Morocco, was preserved thanks to an architect who occupied the house in the 1940s and had the foresight to cover it in brick.

The thoughtful placement of the freestanding furniture — the majority of it tubular or strip steel and designed by Mies in collaboration with Lilly Reich, his partner between 1925 and 1938 — also contributes to the flow. The striking wall of windows defines the home's connection between interior and exterior, and the famed chrome-clad steel columns go beyond function to add another element of interest to the stunning space.


Lounge of Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat

In front of the onyx wall, two Barcelona chairs and a Barcelona stool are upholstered in green (a departure from the typical black and white) to mimic the exterior surroundings. A trio of silver-gray Tugendhat chairs — one of the chairs designed specifically for the home — sit just across from them. Also part of the Barcelona series, which Mies created to furnish his German Pavilion for the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition, the red chaise longue adds a pop of color. The seven floor-to-ceiling windowpanes are the exact copies of the 1930s originals, including the two fully retractable windows, further blurring the distinction between indoors and outdoors.

Dining Room

Dining room of Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat

The rounded Macassar partition is the star among the home's use of exotic woods. Its panels, which disappeared from the main living room in 1940, were later discovered in the cafeteria of the Faculty of Law at Brno's Masaryk University. where the Gestapo had its base during the war. After more than 70 years, these elements were returned to their original place. The partition follows the shape of the Mies-designed polished pearwood dining table and its set of 15 white leather Brno chairs, which were designed specifically for the house.

Study and Library

Study and library of Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat

Behind the onyx wall and next to the adjoining winter garden, the study and library includes a Tugendhat chair in peach leather and two woven MR20, or Stuttgart, chairs at Fritz's desk. The MR20, also in the entry hall and in the nanny's room, was created for Mies's contribution to the Weissenhof housing estate in Stuttgart. The built-in bookcase, featuring the original panels (its shelves, with the exception of one preserved original, were made in the exact replica) is veneered in the same Macassar ebony as the dining room's partition.

Grete's Room

Grete's bedroom at Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat

Strong materials, a few key pieces and an indoor-outdoor connection are the defining details of Mies's starkly simple bedroom design. "Less is more," he famously said. Next to Grete's daybed is a Brno chair and Barcelona stool, both upholstered in red leather. Original built-in wardrobes are veneered in palisander, as they are in Fritz's bedroom just past the couple's adjoining bathroom.

Hanna's Room

Hanna's bedroom at Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat

The children's rooms, including Hanna's (Grete's daughter from her first marriage), feature zebrawood veneered built-ins and the same austere design as their parents' bedrooms.

Bathrooms and Kitchen

Bathroom at Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat

Designed to be purely functional, the starkness of these spaces comes as a bit of shock compared to the second-floor main living area.

Machine Room

Machine room at Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat

Even the technology was ahead of its time at Villa Tugendhat. "In the 1930s, the villa was already equipped with hot-air heating and cooling, and electric retractable windows," Cerna says. Along with the machine room, which served to open and close two windows in the main living room, the lower-level utility rooms included a storage space for Grete's fur coats and a dark room for Fritz's photography passion.

Garden and Terrace

Garden terrace at Mies van der Rohe's Villa Tugendhat

Where the front side of the house was designed for privacy, the southwest-facing side opens up to the view. A set of travertine stairs lead down to the garden, which was designed as an open grassy meadow and features a large weeping willow tree. The view from the terrace looks out to Brno's Spilberk Castle, important cathedrals and churches and even the site of Adolf Loos's birthplace. Greenery grows up the side of the home, fully immersing Villa Tugendhat in its surroundings.

Monday, September 3, 2018

Beppe #Rinaldi has died. Here is his "testament" on #Barolo #Piemonte #wine - Cucina

Translation by google 

Beppe Rinaldi died. Here is his "testament" on Barolo


It was the free, critical and caustic soul of Barolo. The last anarchist in the cellar, in a land with more and more investors and less and less pure and artisanal winemakers. Beppe Rinaldi, for all "Citrico", died at the age of 70, on Sunday 2 September. The news was given by the Intravino and Cronache di gusto websites.

He was sick for a long time. Leave behind excellent wines and many thoughts. On the Langhe, on the Barolo, above all. In reality every time he discussed the way he understood his work, and how he saw it changing around him, he spoke more generally of mankind, of strength and weakness, power and submission, honesty and cunning. His public tastings were shows of civil oratory in which the wine seemed at most a co-star, never a center of exclusive interest. His utterances left their mark. The last one had entrusted it to the "Corriere della Sera", last January. So powerful that, eight months later, he continues to discuss: on the day of his death, a wine site, Winesurf, proposes on reflection starting from Rinaldi's letter. Which we reproduce below, as his last written document. Almost a will.

Now it is up to his wife Annalisa and his daughters Marta and Carlotta to continue his work, continuing to transfer in Barolo that free soul and the smile at the same time sweet and mocking, between the lips a Tuscan medium that burned like him.

Beppe Rinaldi in the cellar

Ride, tells jokes, anecdotes about the neighbor who was enriched by selling the pincer to castrate the calves in the world. But it gets dark when it speaks of the last decision of the Barolo and Barbaresco Consortium: to increase in 308 hectares the cultivation of Nebbiolo for Barolo (a vineyard of 2,112 hectares in 11 municipalities), in addition to the 10 already granted in 2017. « A wicked choice - proclaims - but here no one protests, there is silence ". The winemaker that everyone calls "Citrico", for its sharp judgments, has an alternative proposal. Here it is: «Instead of planting Nebbioli even under the beds it would be more advantageous to include Alba in the Barolo production area. In this way, lands belonging to the Alba area would be added, which is already part of the Barbaresco area, traditionally and historically much more suited than non-crypts and ravines.

We would save forests, hedges, willows, oaks and truffle poplars ". On January 2, the first call of "Citrico": "I have something strong to say about Barolo". But before arriving at the point it took many other phone calls, in which Beppe has juggled with lightning phrases, ironic jokes, proverbs and many memories. Until he decided: "I summarize everything I think and send you a few lines". The full reading (on the paper version of the article was published a summary) tells, in the manner of Rinaldi, the changes of the planet Barolo. Which has closed the last year with a sales growth of 7%. A planet with bottles, like the Monfortino 2010 by Roberto Conterno, on the market at more than 1,200 euros, where a hectare of land costs more than two million euros.

Here is the Rinaldi-thought.

"Barolo and Barbaresco should be an example in Italian enology in terms of protection and dignity, in foresight, as they were together with Brunello, Nobile di Montepulciano, Chianti. Here were born the rules and appellations by the will of Senator Desana and the Consortium for the protection of wines born in 1932. Perhaps the term protection that still boasts the Consortium sounds out of tune. The quantity of vines is already broken, it is almost all a vineyard, we have already lost not the bucolic, the rural, but the handkerchiefs of color, the diversity, for the benefit of monotonous, exaggerated monoculture. Then if you do a lot of product, you do it less well, you are convinced by money, the money convinces and corrupts. It is not because of poverty, but to see these noble wines going from 10 to 300 euros makes us think, as for the balsamic vinegar from 3 to 300 euros. The more the gap widens, the more mercantilism and globalization win. Protection Consortium and Region endorse this habit, when quality and image are in scarcity.

You should not make tourists come only for the wine and the truffle, the beauty and the integrity of the landscape must be maintained. There would be constraints to defend the varieties of the few remaining forests and against the consumption of the soil, against the neo-Gothic, the neo-Middle Ages, the neo-Palladio and the neo-pop, let's leave them to the Americans. Instead we want to distinguish at all costs, leave the mark of our passage and get to a quick image, when the true originality in certain places is not the risk but perhaps, the normality. Also because of Giotto few are born!

Barolo and Barbaresco should not be born or be proposed in clinical cellars, desired by nefarious norms, given birth by those in power ignore. In Burgundy and in Alsace wines and woods are on the earth, on stone, on gravel and are good, if you look up you can see molds and cobwebs, even bats. They are an added value, c'est charmant we are told.

Unesco has been awarded the wine heritage, not the villages.

To put vines to rape these almost unique and precious hills, we hurt these profiles with aggressiveness and imposture; not the "scuà d 'cà" - the fucking of houses of our ancestors but the terraced houses.

We are blind, we consciously sacrifice ourselves to the god of money for the multiplication of bread and fish or for narcissism. Quality does not lie in abundance, especially for certain products whose hierarchy is inherent, inescapable; a Dolcetto, a Barbera will never become a Nebbiolo, but we must respect the merits and positions of all the wines, as Giorgio Bocca said.

These hills are fragile, the marls slide downstream, if it happens to cry to the wolf.

Our old men with an ox could not think of turning over a hill. We have the bulldozers and the jumbe, and the tree has become an obstacle like the ciabot with the advance of the track. We cut the trees also for the parking of cars and buses.

Some say that we beat the French on the markets with the numbers of the bottles, but here we had the beak to call the vocated areas, the noble crus, first "subzones" then "additional geographical references". The grand cru as the grandmotion, that of the morning ..., or the petite one at the edge of the village, and think that we have the sorì, beautiful for sound and image that evokes the sorrow, sunny, in itself laudatory. Let us also apologize, but at least positively, without subjection, with dignity and cunning.

On these hills we have never enclosed the vineyards, there are no stones for the walls and the Burgundy closes of convents and monks.

We have always united the vineyards; the Marchesi Falletti, lords of Barolo, mixed the grapes of the area of ​​Serralunga with that of La Morra and Barolo.

It is an improvement for the harmony and balance of wines produced from single-variety, but it seems to be denied, and it is forbidden to declare it on labels for fear, silence, subjection or for simple interests of commercial lobbies. Democracy is a luxury on these hills, but it is also for our Italy that De Gaulle apostrophized not a poor but poor country.

The vineyards in the Langhe The Consortium of wines that has made over the years definite and flaunted revolutions as Copernican, has also sold off soul, roles and dignity as well as a control body, in the Valoritalia case; he also tried to overcome the monovitigno Nebbiolo, a privilege but at the same time a distress and a challenge. The members of the Consortium must pay but do not vote in the assembly because they "think belly". The ethics of the feud must be maintained on these magical and famous hills.

We must enrich, but not mature, rather the vines also on the roofs, but not the culture, when it is also for it that tourists must come. Fortunes and vineyards triumph, dangerously, even in unworthy places; the climate has changed a lot and the late Nebbiolo matures fortunately today even where there were pits and pastures. There is still the memory of when, without regulations, of Doc and Docg the Tir from the South arrived with the Reposto, the Nerello and the Nero d'Avola, the Cirò to adjust the crunchy Nebbioli. It was tried much more recently to hunt in noble wines, already passed in the meantime from a few 6 to 13 and now perhaps to 18 million bottles "black grape vines". Yet we have before us the example of Brunello with attached and connected past from 200 to 2,000 hectares in a very short time.

A Nebbiolo vineyard for Barolo A Nebbiolo vineyard for Barolo Perhaps Domizio Cavazza was the founder of the great Alba Wine School and inventor of Barbaresco. His project seems to have extended the Barolo area to Barbaresco; certainly the delirium of a dreamer of Modena free from the parochialism of these hills. But, instead of putting Nebbioli under the beds, it would then be more advantageous to include the capital in the Alba production area. A twelfth common for the Barolo, the dozen is also a number for the golden eggs ...

In this way, lands belonging to the Alba area would be added, which is already part of the Barbaresco area, traditionally and historically, much more suited than non-crypts and ravines. Hedges, willows and maybe oaks and poplars from truffles would be saved. Barolo and Barbaresco wines with aromas and elegant and noble tastes, would have the blessing of noble women, refined palates and wealthy windowsills. The Countess of Mirafiore lover and wife of King Vittorio and Castiglione, cousin of Cavour, who frequented these hills also for the joy of the farmers of the Langhe.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Incredible #Miami Artist @JMargulis

Meet J. Margulis of J.Margulis Visual Artist - Voyage MIA Magazine | Miami City Guide

Incredible art from Miami artist, the Venezuelan @JMargulis in @VoyageMIAmag 

Meet J. Margulis of J.Margulis Visual Artist

Today we'd like to introduce you to J. Margulis.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don't you give us some details about you and your story.
I began my career as an artist through photography while studying Management in my native Venezuela. I was working at the time in a family-run business exploring digital printing and later in life, I decided to apply my professional skills to art making, as I progressively became interested in sculpture. Today, my artwork is the result of an intrinsic connection between two and three -dimensional planes, working with sculpture in parallel with photography.
I began producing acrylic 3D sculptures and compositions made from different types of colorful plastic sheets, affixing them onto surfaces, other times as free-standing structures or traditional fixtures on a wall. As a direct consequence of these productions, I began photographing my pieces as a way of documenting them, thereby generating a significant volume of autonomous photographic work which created an intimate connection between the photograph and its related piece, developing a visual yet independent dialogue through language, photography, and sculpture.
At the same time I was supporting myself through custom work I did in my acrylic shop, furniture, displays and any job I could make using my skills and equipment. One day a friend of mine from childhood was in town, he used to be the director of an Art Museum in California and even though I had a long time without talking to him I send him a message and ask him to come over and take a look at my work. I was not even showing my work at that time, I just had this small collection of pieces created by me which I felt where good enough for me to dream of having an Artist career. (something I dream about all my life and honestly felt it was not going to happen in this lifetime of mine).
I needed an opinion from someone I respect and trust given the subjective nature of art critique. I already had a family with two children at that time and could not afford to play the artist, I had a big responsibility but the urge to create, the ability to express myself with a clear voice was so overwhelming that I only need one encouraging word that would unlock my vision to give me license to dream of truly becoming a professional artist. And so it happens that one afternoon my friend swing by and took one look at my small collection of pieces and he could not believe these were the first pieces I ever made…
He took me under his wing and prepare my first show which obviously took many people by surprise, a lot of people did not believe in me and look at me as if I was a bit crazy but the show was a great success and so my artist career began and I never look back. On the contrary, I just spring forward working like a madman, evolving, growing and developing this new sense of myself. It's been several years from that time and I still have this feeling of gratitude, this sense of purpose and obligation to become the very best version of myself. Very few people get to do what the love the most in life, the possibility of realization is not a given and when you are lucky enough to find it specially when you thought it was too late for it then you know you must honor it every day for the rest of your life.
Has it been a smooth road?
As a struggling artist many times you must take another paying job we all have hear this before but the truth is that not being able to work on your Art is one of the most miserable feeling you can have, it just feels like a great waste of time. When you are an artist you know that transcendence, redemption and the ability to deeply communicate with other human beings only can be realize through art.
To sell an art piece more than the money you get to spend is a promise that you can keep making art and maybe if you sell enough you will be able to do it all day and everyday of your life…. that is a dream worth taking risks, exposing yourself and revealing without fear your most intimate essence.
It's a road full of uncertainty and many discouraging moments, disappointments and self doubt. But when you know this is your mission in life, when you know there is anything else that can take you to developing your full potential then you become a survivor and find the way to push forward and have faith in yourself.
So let's switch gears a bit and go into the J.Margulis Visual artist story. Tell us more about the business.
I believe that courage, empathy, and kindness are all ingredients in a powerful and elusive formula, which arms us with a clean and ever-sharpening lens that catches fleeting glimpses of our true nature. Small fractions of divine understanding that reverberate in our essence with the power to shape our deepest beliefs and completely change our perspectives, and so, the way we act in the unfolding of our own existence.
My work is about the physical representation of this belief. I digitally design 3-D objects and compositions, and cut them in slices from different types of plastic sheet materials. These slices are then fixed to a rigid canvas, a pedestal or held together in space. Most of my work is done using acrylic sheets with different levels of translucency in a range of colors, graphic patterns, textures and photographic images directly printed on the sheets' surfaces. The bright and fully saturated color palettes to which I instinctively gravitate to, is heavily influenced by the traditional Mexican arts and crafts which made a great impact on me during the time that I lived there.
I treat my three-dimensional pieces as light traps or secret blueprints, in which by controlling the placement of its components, I'm able to create intriguing 3-D containers. Their designs are then fully revealed by applying or "pouring" light into them. In a sense, light becomes the ink that reveals the design by following a 3-D template. The light source may vary from natural to one or more fixtures, placed on precise locations in relationship to the subject, with specific power, color temperature, angle and proximity.
These exposed patterns and designs are not absolutes or unique because as the viewer changes his point of view, the work expresses a different narrative that is completely new in its own essence. It intrigues and fascinates me how the object mutates in front of me, with no other resource but a simple change of perspective. Going back and forth naturally, I try to synthesize and integrate different perceptions that coexist as different facets of an object.
Every time, I find myself trying to lock that seemingly unreal angle in which we are able to contemplate the amazing connections among complex layers of facts, prejudices, and beliefs; that "sometimes surreal" frame in which we discover how easily we could be absolutely wrong and misjudge everything that surrounds us, while tragicomically posing ourselves as proud holders of truth and owners of higher grounds.
How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
I think that the future is already here. Social media and online gallery platforms has created this scenario where there is a personal and direct relationship between the artist and the audience.
Right now anyone can truly get to know an artist by following his or her development on a continuous basis through social media images and the artist expressed ideas and thoughts. There is this virtual conversation in which art gets infused into people's daily life. You can talk to the artist, you can tell them what you like, what you don't like, celebrate the success or critique the shortcomings there is this amazing relationship potential not only with the art but with the artist itself.
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Getting in touch: VoyageMIA is built on recommendations from the community; it's how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.


Thursday, December 14, 2017

DavidRockefeller #Art Collection and the Largest Art Auction of All Time

The #DavidRockefeller #Art Collection could take in, +/- $650MM, making it the highest-grossing auction in history.

Incredible!  They don't make them like that anymore. 

This spring, following Mr. Rockefeller's wishes, this legacy—some 1,600 lots of it—is going on the block, in a spectacular series of auctions at Christie's in New York, in Rockefeller Center, appropriately. After the last hammer falls, the Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller could take in, according to estimates, some $650 million, which would make it the highest-grossing auction in history. It's the sale of the century.


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