Architectural Archives

  • Photo Barrett Doherty

Uncrating Kahn

Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2017, 06:30pm
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Meyerson Hall, 210 South 34th Street, Philadelphia
Admission is free; RSVP recommended.

The story of master architect and longtime PennDesign faculty member Louis Kahn (1901-1974) is intrinsically connected to Philadelphia, where he spent most of his life and career. In conjunction with the landmark exhibition Louis Kahn: The Power of Architecture, on view at The Fabric Workshop and Museum through November 5, William Whitaker talks about Kahn’s enduring legacy, his connections to Penn, and the making of the exhibition. Whitaker is co-organizer of The Power of Architecture and curator at Penn’s Architectural Archives, the primary lender to the exhibition.

The first major retrospective of Kahn’s work in two decades, The Power of Architecture extensively documents all of Kahn’s important projects—from his early urban planning concepts and single-family houses to monumental late works such as the Roosevelt Memorial in New York City (1973-74), posthumously completed in October 2012. The presentation of Kahn’s architectural projects is accompanied by a selection of watercolors, pastels and charcoal drawings created during his travels, which document his skill as an artist and illustrator. Highlights from The Power of Architecture include previously unpublished footage shot by Nathanial Kahn, the son of Louis Kahn and the director of the film My Architect, as well as interviews with architects such as Frank Gehry, Renzo Piano, Peter Zumthor, and Sou Fujimoto that underscore the continued significance of Kahn’s work.

This lecture is co-presented by the Architectural Archives at Penn and The Fabric Workshop and Museum.

Louis Kahn: The Power of Architecture is organized by the Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein, in collaboration with the Architectural Archives, and the NAI part of The New Institute, Rotterdam. The exhibition is globally sponsored by Swarovski.