Pavello Mies Van der Rohe, Barcelona
Mies van der Rohe, who is considered the father of Modern architecture, designed the German Pavilion for the 1929 Barcelona International Exhibition. Today, we can once again admire this key landmark of 20th century art and architecture as a result of the painstaking reconstruction carried out in the 1980s in Barcelona.
The Mies van der Rohe Pavilion, which is also known as the Barcelona Pavilion, is an iconic landmark of the Modern Movement and has been a source of inspiration to generations of architects. Its creator was the director of the Bauhaus, the school which changed the course of European art and design. The Pavilion is built from glass, steel, and four different types of marble (Roman travertine, green marble from the Alps, ancient green marble from Greece and golden onyx from the Atlas Mountains), which are the same types used in the original building. The importance of the Pavilion lies in the fact that its materials epitomise the ideals of modernism: perfect symmetry, open-plan spaces, precise distances and minimalism. The effect is complemented by Georg Kolbe’s beautiful sculpture, entitled Alba (Dawn). It is strategically placed at one end of a shallow pool, its reflection visible in the water, on the marble surfaces and glass, giving the impression that it is multiplied throughout the space, while the curves and irregularities of the human form contrast with the geometrical purity of the building. The Pavilion also contains examples of the Barcelona chair, which was purpose-designed for the Pavilion by Mies van der Rohe. With its white-leather upholstery and metal frame, it has become one of the icons of modern design.