Charles Gwathmey

Charles Gwathmey, born in 1938, American architect and teacher, whose designs marked a return to the early modern style of Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier. This style emphasized bare, functional forms and the use of concrete, steel, and glass. In the early 1970s Gwathmey helped form the New York Five, a group of architectsGwathmey, Peter Eisenman, Michael Graves, John Hejduk, and Richard Meierwho sought a return to the ideas of Le Corbusier.

Gwathmey was born in Charlotte

Gwathmey was born in Charlotte, North Carolina. He studied at the University of Pennsylvania from 1956 to 1959 and then at Yale University, where he received a master of arts degree in 1962. His teachers included Louis Kahn and Robert Venturi. Gwathmey began his own practice in 1964, and his first commission was the Gwathmey House and Studio in Amagansett, New York (1965-1967), which he designed with Richard Henderson, his partner until 1971.

In the early 1970s Gwathmey`s reputation

In the early 1970s Gwathmey`s reputation grew as he and the other members of the New York Five were celebrated in a 1972 exhibition called Five Architects at New York City`s Museum of Modern Art. He began working with American architect Robert Siegel in 1970, and in 1971 the two formed a partnership. Gwathmey-Siegel projects include the Cogan House in East Hampton, New York (1971-1972); the Gary House in Kent, Connecticut (1983); the School of Agriculture Building at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York (1984-1990); and the Disney Convention Center at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida (1989-1992).

Although their early works clearly show

Although their early works clearly show the influence of Le Corbusier`s functionalism, Gwathmey and Siegel increasingly followed the postmodern trend away from the austerity and inflexibility of Le Corbusier`s principles. Their structures began to employ more color and freer forms, which they tailored to the environment of the structure. This growing flexibility is most evident in their additions to the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York City (1985-1992), in which understated modernism complements the original structure without diminishing its power.

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