The New York Times Style Magazine has this week a big old piece about the “25 rooms that influence the way we design”. Then on to the Pantheon in Rome – this is a building, not a room. But maybe it is also a room with walls and a ceiling.
After that it gets better and it’s fascinating for someone like me who has hardly any artistic bone in his body. The selection is heavily focused on the UK / France / USA and only includes eight rooms outside the Big Three. Her favorite room, chosen by all six team members, is Pierre Chareau’s salon for Jean Dalt’s Maison de Verre in Paris, built in 1932.
Here is the short description of Nancy Hass:
Architect Pierre Chareau designed the building as a series of interlocking forms, with the doctor’s office on the first floor and two private levels above. The effect was compared with that of Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret at Villa Savoye (1931) edge of the city. But unlike the imposing international reinforced concrete monolith, the Maison de Verre, thanks to the work of the iron craftsman Louis Dalbet, has a lyrical delicacy that has brought such touches as perforated mechanical shields to separate rooms and a rolling steel tube library ladder. After more than 70 years in the Dalsace family, the house was bought in 2005 by the history-obsessed American collector Robert M. Rubin and carefully restored.
Personally, I have seen almost none of these rooms except in pictures. I saw the pantheon. I saw the last room in 2001: A Space Odyssey. And since Room No. 4 is “The Stuben of Georgian Houses in the United Kingdom (circa 1714-1830, various architects)”, I have probably seen several of these. But that’s it. Some of the rooms are open to the public, others are not. Next time I travel to Paris or London, I should try to visit one of the public spaces.
All in all a fun exercise.