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  • Format

    Hardcover

  • Pages

    368

  • TRIM SIZE

    7 x 9

  • ON SALE

    May 28, 2019

  • ISBN

    9781580935234

  • ILLUSTRATIONS/PHOTOGRAPHS

    300

About the Author

Chris Grimley is an architect and designer at OverUnder, an architecture and design firm in Boston, Massachusetts. He has taught at the University of British Columbia, Rhode Island School of Design, Northeastern University, and Wentworth Institute of Technology. He is coauthor of Heroic: Concrete Architecture and the New Boston (2015), and the designer and editor of Henry N. Cobb: Words and Works 1948–2018 (2018).
Michael Kubo is Assistant Professor in the History and Theory of Architecture at the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture and Design, University of Houston. He was previously the Wyeth Fellow at the Center For Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, National Gallery of Art and Associate Curator for the US Pavilion at the 2014 International Architecture Biennale in Venice. He is coauthor of numerous books on twentieth-century architecture and urbanism, including Heroic: Concrete Architecture and the New Boston (2015) and OfficeUS Atlas (2015), and is currently preparing a book on The Architects Collaborative and the authorship of the architectural corporation after 1945.
Rami el Samahy is a founding principal at OverUnder. Currently a Visiting Professor at MIT, he has taught at Carnegie Mellon University, Boston University, the Boston Architectural College, and Wentworth Institute of Technology. His research has focused on a wide variety of urban issues including the contemporary Arab city, the logics of main street retail, and the legacy of urban renewal.

Imagining the Modern

Architecture and Urbanism of the Pittsburgh Renaissance

Rami el Samahy, Chris Grimley, Michael Kubo

Imagining the Modern explores Pittsburgh’s ambitious modern architecture and urban renewal program that made it a gem of American postwar cities, and set the stage for its stature today.

In the 1950s and ’60s an ambitious program of urban revitalization transformed Pittsburgh and became a model for other American cities. Billed as the Pittsburgh Renaissance, this era of superlatives–the city claimed the tallest aluminum clad building, the world’s largest retractable dome, the tallest steel structure–developed through visionary mayors and business leaders, powerful urban planning authorities, and architects and urban designers of international renown, including Frank Lloyd Wright, I.M. Pei, Mies van der Rohe, SOM, and Harrison & Abramovitz. These leaders, civic groups, and architects worked together to reconceive the city through local and federal initiatives that aimed to address the problems that confronted Pittsburgh’s postwar development.

Initiated as an award-winning exhibition at the Carnegie Museum of Art in 2014, Imagining the Modern untangles this complicated relationship with modern architecture and planning through a history of Pittsburgh’s major sites, protagonists, and voices of intervention. Through original documentation, photographs and drawings, as well as essays, analytical drawings, and interviews with participants, this book provides a nuanced view of this crucial moment in Pittsburgh’s evolution. Addressing both positive and negative impacts of the era, Imagining the Modern examines what took place during the city’s urban renewal era, what was gained and lost, and what these histories might suggest for the city’s future.