What is minimalistic Architecture? If we compile most common answers of architects-it simply means removing all the inessential elements. Does this mean that there’s no need to design? Is it low cost?
If we dig deep into history, minimalistic architecture came into existence in the 1960s, inspired from Japanese architecture and De Stijl Architecture.
To understand deeply about Minimalistic Architecture, let’s look at 15 firms who aim to create better surroundings through minimalistic architecture.
1. John Pawson (Founded in 1981)
John Pawson, “Master of hyper Minimalism” has worked on various scales of projects from a monastery to a spoon. His most notable works include-Wooden Chapel in the Bavarian Forest, Okinawa house in Japan, Calvin Klein Collections Store in New York.
2. Peter Zumthor &Partner (Founded in 1979)
Peter Zumthor, “Uncompromising Minimalist”, focuses on health care, THERM, and well-being architecture.
His buildings have a timeless nature, they are true to materials, context, and experience. He believes in the magic of reality which comes from precision in buildings.
Peter’s firm doesn’t have any website neither does he seek media for publishing his works.
3. Judd Foundation (Founded in 1977)
Donald Judd- an artist who disavows the term “Minimalism”.
His pragmatic approach with artistic expressions makes his works stunning and useful. Moreover, his works are ecologically sensitive and sustainable. His notable works include-101 Spring Street renovation, Whyte building, Cobb house, Casa Perez.
4. Vincent Van Duysen (FOUNDED IN 1989)
“A tailor of modest architecture”
He believes that architecture should not demand attention, rather it should be a silent visual experience. His detail-oriented approach and choice of materials are tailored according to the client’s needs. He completed his first public project -Pulcinella Youth hostel in Antwerp in 2010 received much appreciation. Later, he worked on IBA headquarters offices, T offices, and various public projects.
5. David Chipperfield Architects (Founded in 1985)
An award-winning firm with 180 employees in 4 locations. In 2011, he won Mies Van De Rohe Award for re-constructing Neues Museum in Berlin. His design approach is rigorous and elemental. His Notable works include- River and Rowing Museum in Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire; The Hepworth Wakefield gallery, UK; Gormley Studio; Museo Jumex.
6. Alberto Campo Baeza
Founded in: 1986)
One of the pioneers of Minimalism, Alberto promotes the use of colors in architecture. He has published books about architecture in several languages. His notable works include-BIT Centre, a nursery for Benetton, Olnick Spanu House, IL Cielo in Terra.
7. Ateliers Jean Nouvel
Founded in: 1970
Renowned French architect Jean Nouvel’s buildings are known to have their personality.
“I am a hedonist, and I want to give pleasure to other people.”-Jean Nouvel
Some of his famous projects include-Opera Nouvel, Copenhagen concert hall, Central Park in Sydney, The National Museum of Qatar, Museum of Art Pudong.
8. Gabellini Sheppard Associates
Founded in: 1991
Kimberly Sheppard collaborated with Michael Gabellini and has led this firm to achieve more than 60 awards and honors.
Their ideology is to create simple yet innovative spaces that provide a unique experience to users.
Their most famous project was completed in collaboration with Tadao Ando, the 7-story luxury residential project in Manhattan.
9. Hiroyuki Shinozaki Architects
Hiroyuki Shinozaki Architects are well known in Japan for their minimalistic architecture. Most of their projects are houses, coffee shops, restaurants, bars, and hospitality architecture. One of the most famous ones is House T.
10. Antoine Predock
He believes that architecture should not be solely function-driven, rather it should have some imagination. Responding to a place with deep understanding is what makes his works seem like frozen poetry. His notable works include- Canadian Museum for Human Rights, Stone Island VIP Mansion in Qatar, Centre for Journalism, and Communication.
11. SANNA (Founded In 1995)
This world-renowned youngest firm is run by Japanese architects- Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa. The philosophy is to create a sense of continuity and community. White spaces with unclear boundaries define their style of minimalistic architecture. Their notable works include-New museum of contemporary art in New York, Grace farms in Connecticut, Serpentine Gallery Pavilion.
12. Mario Botta Architetti
Swiss architect, Mario Botta starting working at the age of 16. Although his designs are modern his construction techniques are traditional. His notable works include- San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Santa Maria Degli Angeli Chapel.
13. Claudio Silvestrin
Founded in: 1989
This Italian architect doesn’t believe in trends or gestures or styles, rather with a minimum number of objects and materials he creates spaces beyond materialism similar to natural spaces-mountains, beaches that can leave a person in awe.
Most notable projects include- Museum of Contemporary Art in Turin, Cannon Lane House in London, Esplanade Apartments in Melbourne.
14. Shigeru Ban Architects
Shigeru Ban is famous for his style of Invisible Structures. His innovative disaster rehabilitation shelters made-up of paper and cardboards have offered a new world to people who lost everything in a disaster.
His notable projects include- Paper Nursery School in Yaan, Abu Dhabi Art Pavilion, Cardboard Cathedral in New Zealand.
15. Tadao Ando
Talking of minimalism, Tadao Ando is another synonym, isn’t it? Tadao is a Japanese self-taught architect, his designs emphasize emptiness, nothingness, and light. He focuses on building a harmonious relationship between nature and the built. His most notable works include- Church of light, Wabi House.
Looking at these works, it is clear that minimalistic architecture not only eliminates the unnecessary but it also enhances the experience. Although this style aims at removing most of the elements, it is definitely not cost-effective, infact, most of these projects were done for super rich clients.