Karel Teige, Author, Eric Dluhosch, Translator MIT Press (MA) $62 (p) ISBN His treatise The Minimum Dwelling (), translated into English for the first. Following Karel Teige’s famous diagram of this typology, we can understand minimum dwelling as a form of domestic space organised around. Karel Teige, the Czech communist, avant-garde artist, and architectural critic, was known for many insightful works. The Minimum Dwelling.

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Teige shows how Gropius, Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, and others designed little more than new versions of baroque palaces, mainly for the new financial aristocracy.

It calls for a radical rethinking of domestic space and of the role of modern architecture in the planning, design, and construction of new dwelling types for the proletariat. And that quote from the introduction is one of my favourite bits dwe,ling Teige, very telling of him.

Karel Teige – The Minimum Dwelling

It really is a pity that the interwar period anywhere east of where the Iron Curtain ended up being and west of Moscow is so little studied, but if anyone from the first Czech Republic is to be looked at it is Teige. The book covers many subjects that are still of great relevance. Karel Teigeone of the most important figures of avant-garde modernism of the s and s, influenced virtually every area of art, design, and urban thinking in his native Czechoslovakia.

Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. I noticed you made a typo: All these houses with all their technical luxury and radical design devices, with all their formal originality, are really nothing other than new versions of opulent baroque palaces, that is, seats of the new financial aristocracy.

Oh how we need you now!

Architecture Misfit #9: Karel Teige | misfits’ architecture

For what is a retirement community or nursing home but a collective dwelling with shared kitchen, dining and living facilities? The detailed programmatic chapters on collective housing remain far ahead of current thinking, and his comments on collective dwelling presage daelling living experiments of the s and s, as well as the communal facilities in contemporary condominium buildings and retirement communities.


I found it difficult to write about Teige. The spiral organization of spaces, giving ever-increasing areas of space to more recent periods, is achieved at the cost of ending up with a dark interior hall the Sacrarium makes a virtue of this necessity and at the cost of extremely difficult access from the top, by means of long ramps, and inadequate elevators.

Stairwells have windows because the corridor would be dwellihg otherwise. However, the whole conception, as we can read from the site plan, gives a puzzling, archaic impression. No, a machine for representation and splendor, for the idle, lazy life of the bosses playing golf and their ladies bored in their boudoirs.

His functionalism was not the irresponsible caricaturizations of Hitchcock and Johnson. The internet has taken a fancy to his surreal collages. His Minimum Dwelling, originally published in Czech inand appearing now for the first time in English, is one of the landmark architectural books of the twentieth century.

A flat roof or steel furniture can never be regarded as the ultimate goal of avant-garde architecture. Teige has much to say about how the minimum dwelling should not be a watered down imitation of bourgeois values for such apartments symbolise the aspiration to traditional values rather than their rejection.

He describes alternative lifestyles and new ways of cohabitation of sexes, generations, and classes. See Cold Logic vs. I also used it to introduce him to my reading group: Teige envisioned the minimum dwelling not as a reduced version of a bourgeois apartment or rural miimum, but as teigr wholly new dwelling type built on the cooperation of architects, sociologists, economists, health officials, physicians, social workers, politicians, and trade unionists. This is what Paris apartments were like in Funny old world eh?


Karel Teige – The Minimum Dwelling | The Charnel-House

Kitchens have windows because cookers were either coal- or gas-fired. These building configurations and the apartment layouts they contain are the logical result of the desire to provide maximum rentable area without regard for daylight or amenity. What Teige proposed then from the standpoint of communism, we now have as a consequence of capitalism.

Teige has much to say about how the minimum dwelling should not be a watered down imitation of bourgeois values. In France alone, aboutdwellings destroyed during the war had been rebuilt by but there was still a shortage of 1, The year wasthe same year Villa Savoye was completed.

The Minimum Dwelling is not just a book on architecture, but also a blueprint for a new way of living. The museum building in the shape of a pyramid has no functional justification and produces an effect of an old Egyptian, or rather old Mexican atmosphere. Using few resources to design and construct humane yet minimal dwellings for people was a really really useful thing for architects to do. Today, in 30 sqm studio apartments and microflats, we can still see oversized kitchens, a space for a sofa opposite a flatscreen, a balcony off a living space, and an extractor hood above a full-size cooker.

The common belief that architects mimic the artist myth and have artistic periods or phases is also a myth. A machine for living? The plan on the right has stairwells with three and five. Once again, thanks for the introduction. The plan on the left below, has stairwells with two and three doors off a landing.

Great stuff, Karel — how right you were!