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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A machine for living? Once again, thanks for the introduction. 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. teieg

Architecture Misfit #9: Karel Teige | misfits’ architecture

Teige has much to deelling about how the minimum dwelling should not be a watered down imitation of bourgeois values. His Minimum Dwelling, originally published in Czech inand appearing now for the first time in English, is one of the landmark architectural mininum of the twentieth century. The internet has dwellihg a fancy to his surreal collages. I also used it to introduce him to my reading group: I noticed you made a typo: 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.

No, a machine for representation and splendor, for the idle, lazy life of the bosses playing golf and their ladies bored in their boudoirs.

Alvaro Arancibia-The Minimum Dwelling – Karel Teige 48 | AA PHD

The book covers many subjects that are still of great relevance. 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.


In France alone, aboutdwellings destroyed during the war had been rebuilt by but there was still a shortage of 1, And that quote from the introduction is one of my favourite bits by Teige, very telling of him.

Great stuff, Karel — how right you were!

Stairwells have windows because the corridor would be unlit otherwise. 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. 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.

What Teige proposed then from the standpoint of communism, we now have as a consequence of capitalism. The year wasthe same year Villa Savoye was completed.

Funny old world eh? This is what Paris apartments were like in His functionalism was not the irresponsible caricaturizations of Hitchcock and Johnson. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email.

Architecture Misfit #9: Karel Teige

The plan on the left below, has stairwells with two and three doors off a landing. 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.

These building configurations and the apartment layouts they contain are the logical result tsige the desire to provide maximum rentable area without regard for daylight or teig. For what is a retirement community or nursing home but a collective dwelling with shared kitchen, dining and living facilities?

Using few resources to design and construct humane yet minimal dwellings for people was a really really useful thing for architects to do. 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. Teige envisioned the minimum dwelling not as a reduced version of a bourgeois apartment or rural cottage, but as a wholly new dwelling type built on the cooperation of architects, sociologists, economists, health officials, physicians, social workers, politicians, and trade unionists.


The common belief that architects mimic the artist myth and have artistic periods or phases is also a dweelling. However, the whole conception, as we can read from the site plan, gives a puzzling, archaic impression. 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.

A flat roof or steel furniture can never be regarded as the ultimate goal of avant-garde architecture. See Cold Logic vs. Oh how we need you now!

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The Minimum Dwelling is not just a book on architecture, but also a blueprint for a new way of living. Kitchens have windows because cookers were either coal- or gas-fired.

I found it difficult to write about Teige. He describes alternative lifestyles and new ways of cohabitation of sexes, generations, and classes. The plan on the right has stairwells with kaeel and five. 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. The detailed programmatic chapters on collective housing remain far ahead of current thinking, and his comments on collective dwelling presage communal living experiments of the s and s, as well as the communal facilities in contemporary condominium buildings and retirement communities.