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Born in postwar Poland in 1946. As a youngster he moved with his family to Israel in 1957 and to the United States in 1959. Studied music in Israel but left music to study architecture. Professional architectural degree in 1970 from the Cooper Union. Postgraduate degree in History and Theory of Architecture at the School of Comparative Studies at Essex University (England) in 1972. Has taught and lectured at many universities worldwide. He has held such positions as the Frank O. Gehry Chair at the University of Toronto.
PHYLOSOPHY Daniel Libeskind believe that architecture has entered nearly an end condition. Not only that he says that architecture has lost its reputation and the everyday architecture is dead. He wants to give his works some movement & life & from here he comes to Deconstruction. He thought the architecture as a connector or linkage of present, past & future. So most of his works have the reflection of the history (past), says of the time (present) & run to the infinity (future). His buildings are never just buildings they are metaphors. he says a writer is not interested in writings he just want to tell a story. so to him architecture is a medium to communicate the beauty of a space, of life and shadow. he says,” I have a repertoire of forms but I don‟t think about them, I think the meaning of project.” In his life dislocation, destruction and survival are powerful elements. He determined to get away from the simplified view of architectures tradition. And his aim was emotionally to create such a space which is emotionally moved the soul.
PROJECTS . . . The Jewish Museum, Berlin Denver Art Museum, Denver Ground ZERO, New York
Imperial War Museum North
Felix Nussbaum museum, Germany
Danish Jewish Museum, Denmark
The Ascent, Covington
Royal Ontario Museum, Canada
There are four aspects to summaries this four-fold structure: Its first aspect is the invisible, second is the cut-off, third is the ever-present dimension of the deported and missing Berliners & fourth is Walter Benjamin's urban apocalypse along the "One Way Street.“ The project is a new architecture for a time marked by an understanding of history, a new understanding of museums, and a new sense of the relationship between program and architectural space. Therefore this museum is not only a response to a particular program, but an emblem of hope.
History of the Museum 1893 Founded as the Denver Artists Club. 1932 Moved into first galleries in City and County building and became Denver Art Museum. 2006 Frederic C. Hamilton building, designed by Daniel Libeskind. 07.10.2006 The new building opened.
APPROCH "The materials of the building closely relate to the existing context (local stone) as well as innovative new materials (titanium) which together will form spaces that connect local Denver tradition to the 21st Century. "The amazing vitality and growth of Denver -- from its foundation to the present -- inspires the form of the new museum. Coupled with the magnificent topography with its breathtaking views of the sky and the Rocky Mountains, the dialogue between the boldness of construction and the romanticism of the landscape creates a unique place in the world. The bold and forward looking engagement of the public in forging its own cultural, urban and spirited destiny is something that would strike anyone upon touching the soil of Colorado.
"One of the challenges of building the Denver Art Museum was to work closely and respond to the extraordinary range of transformations in light, coloration, atmospheric effects, temperature and weather conditions unique to this City. I insisted these be integrated not only functionally and physically, but culturally and experientially for the benefit of the visitors' experience. "The new building is not based on an idea of style or the rehashing of ready made ideas or external shape because its architecture does not separate the inside from the outside or provide a pretty facade behind which a typical experience exists; rather this architecture has an organic connection to the public at large and to those aspects of experience that are also intellectual, emotional, and sensual. The integration of these dimensions for the enjoyment and edification of the public is achieved in a building that respects the hand crafted nature of architecture and its immediate communication from the hand, to the eye, to the mind. After all, the language of architecture beyond words themselves is the laughter of light, proportion and materiality.“
“I was always inspired by the light and the geological formation of Rockies” - Daniel LIBESKIND
APPROCH The IWMN is fundamentally based on this world - a contemporary world shattered into fragments and reassembled as a fundamental emblem of conflict. These fragments, shards or traces of history, are in turn assembled on this site and projected beyond it. An entirely new landscape will offer an environment in which the participatory experience of the public will begin long before the visitors enter through the actual doors. The building exists in the horizon of the imagination and is visible across the strategic points of the city and its surroundings. The IWMN is a constellation composed of three interlocking shards. The Earth Shard forms the generous and flexible museum space, signifying the open, earthly realm of conflict and war. The Air Shard serves as a dramatic entry into the Museum, with its projected images, observatories and education spaces. The Water Shard forms the platform for viewing the Canal, complete with a restaurant, cafe, deck and performance space. These three shards together - Earth, Air and Water - concretize Twentieth century conflicts which have never taken place on an abstract piece of paper, but rather have been fought on dramatic terrain by infantry, in the skies by the airforce and in the sea by battleships.
This composition and constellation of forms, functions and relationships all complement the area in which the project is situated, forming a center out of the disparate places around it. The Lowry Centre, Manchester United Football Fields, and the Manchester Ship Canal and transportation system are brought together in a new perspective for the pedestrian and for those coming to the area by car. The IWMN can be observed from various vistas and at the same time provide new views from within itself of the surrounding panorama - a panorama which becomes part of the Museum experience and the story of the people of the northern region told within it. The museum spaces respond to new concepts of their exhibitions by showing in a concrete and visible form how the personal histories of the people of the North are woven into the fabric of Twentieth century conflict. What makes the IWMN unique is the integration of architecture, exhibition design engineering and a vision of history and the future. The building is of simple construction, with low-maintenance costs, efficient use, ecological responsibility and a sensitive security awareness. The Museum's impact is one of new life and new potential.
"As Paul Valery pointed out the world is permanently threatened by two dangers: order and disorder. This project develops the realm of the in-between, the realm of democratic openness, plurality and potential. By navigating the course between rigid totalities on one hand, and the chaos of events on the other, this building reflects an evolving identity open to profound public participation, access and education. The Museum is therefore a catalyst for focussing energies, both entrepreneurial and spiritual, and moulding them into a creative expression. If Henry Adams were writing today he would add to the Virgin and the Dynamo the Museum, for it is the cultural dynamo transforming the past into the New Millennium. The importance of this act of construction is underscored by the recreation of the entire Trafford region, leading to urban regeneration, job creation, and tourist spending. But beyond the demands for integration and quality, the IWMN will offer substance for the imagination and the daring of the unexpected. The IWMN will provide new answers to all programs, invent new connections between the building and its surroundings and become an instantly recognizable, memorable place of encounter."
APPROCH The building consists of three main components: the tall and narrow central Nussbaum corridor, the long main section, and the bridge, which acts as a connection to the old museum. In its pathways with their sudden breaks, unpredictable intersections and dead ends, the building structure reflects the life of Felix Nussbaum. "It is only by a fortuitous accident and the determined will of the town of Osnabrück that the name and works of Felix Nussbaum have been raised to consciousness amongst the millions of erased Jewish names and lost works. The task of building a Museum to house the artistic remnants of Nussbaum‟s life raises issues which are not merely architectural but moral as well. I believe therefore, that the destruction of Jewish culture perpetuated by the Third Reich must not be dealt with solely in memorial terms. The remaining witnesses to the annihilation of European Jewry are now dying out. The paintings of Nussbaum are more than paintings - they are everliving documents which, placed in a new context of participation and a new witnessing, elevate the narration of history as art into the emblem of the very survival of the Jewish people and of European civilization.
Passage of Nussbaum
Every element of the spatial organization, geometry and programmatic content of this scheme refers to the paradigmatic destiny of Nussbaum: his prize in Rome removed by the Nazis, his time in Berlin, the consequences of his permanent exile from Osnabrück, the futility of his escape routes through France and Belgium, to his final deportation and murder in Auschwitz. And yet all this tragic destiny is placed in the context of Nussbaum‟s abiding hope in ultimate justice which this proposed scheme seeks to fulfill. "The different components of the new complex are seen as connecting and composing an integral structure, while at the same time exposing a permanent horizon of disconnection paradoxically linking significant places to the town; substantial points of history to spatial memory. The new building, therefore, does not seek to dominate as a new form, but rather retreats to form a background of hope for the existing Historical Museum and the Villa containing the folk art collection. These buildings are treated as the familiar, yet solitary every-day figures, while the entire site is reorganized around the nexus of a new topography which connects the town back onto itself. The Nussbaum Museum becomes the link to a lost history.
"The visitor enters laterally into the Nussbaum pathway, which is cut open in order to record and define the importance of entering „The Museum Without Exit.' The exterior of the Nussbaum pathway is absence itself - an empty canvass of Nussbaum‟s martyred life referring to the absoluteness of the crime and the importance of the public site. This empty exterior bequeaths a sense of openness and incompleteness which is necessary for the interpretation of Nussbaum‟s oeuvre. Within the Nussbaum Pathway there are traces of the vitality of the former Jewish life of Osnabrück. Once the visitor is inside this compressed space illuminated by triangular skylights, he/she is confronted with a displaced volume containing the vertical entrance volume and its attendant functions.
Studio Daniel Libeskind's design study was selected in February 2003 as the master site plan for the rebuilding of the World Trade Center Site. In addition to a towering spire of 1776 feet, the plan proposed a complex program which called for the construction of a memorial with waterfalls, an underground museum, a visitor center, retail space, a special transit hub and four office towers spiraling to the height of the Freedom Tower. For more than 5 years, Studio Daniel Libeskind has been coordinating with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, Foster and Partners, Maki and Associates, Richard Rogers Partnership, and Santiago Calatrava to realize Memory Foundations -- a truly remarkable design that will reclaim New York's skyline. In addition to the the Freedom Tower, which was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, and a world-class transportation hub designed by Santiago Calatrava, four more towers and an awe-inspiring memorial are currently under construction in Lower Manhattan. "I arrived by ship to New York as a teenager, an immigrant, and like millions of others before me, my first sight was the Statue of Liberty and the amazing skyline of Manhattan. I have never forgotten that sight or what it stands for. This is what this project is all about."
"When I first began this project, New Yorkers were divided as to whether to keep the site of the World Trade Center empty or to fill the site completely and build upon it. I meditated many days on this seemingly impossible dichotomy. To acknowledge the terrible deaths which occurred on this site, while looking to the future with hope, seemed like two moments which could not be joined. I sought to find a solution which would bring these seemingly contradictory viewpoints into an unexpected unity. So, I went to look at the site, to stand within it, to see people walking around it, to feel its power and to listen to its voices. And this is what I heard, felt and saw.
"The great slurry wall is the most dramatic element which survived the attack, an engineering wonder constructed on bedrock foundations and designed to hold back the Hudson River. The foundations withstood the unimaginable trauma of the destruction and stand as eloquent as the Constitution itself asserting the durability of Democracy and the value of individual life. "We have to be able to enter this ground while creating a quiet, meditative and spiritual space. We need to journey down, some 30 feet into the Ground Zero Memorial site, past the slurry wall, a procession with deliberation. The Memorial site remains protected from the dynamic activities of a revitalized new neighborhood.
"The foundation, however, is not only the story of tragedy but also reveals the dimensions of life. The Path trains continue to traverse this ground now, as before, linking the past to the future. Of course, we need a Museum at the epicenter of Ground Zero, a museum of the event, of memory and hope. The Museum becomes one of the entrances into Ground Zero, always accessible, leading us down into a space of reflection, of meditation, a space for the Memorial itself. This Memorial will be the result of an international competition. "Those who were lost have become heroes. To commemorate those lost lives, I created two large public places, the Park of Heroes and the Wedge of Light. Each year on September 11th between the hours of 8:46 a.m., when the first airplane hit, and 10:28 a.m., when the second tower collapsed, the sun will shine without shadow, in perpetual tribute to altruism and courage.
"We all came to see the site, more than 4 million of us, walking around it, peering through the construction wall, trying to understand that tragic vastness. So I designed two ramps, one from Liberty Street and West Street running along the great slurry wall and one from Greenwich, behind the waterfall to the southern edge of the site.
"The exciting architecture of the new Lower Manhattan Rail station with a concourse linking the Path trains, the subways connected, hotels, a performing arts center, office towers, underground malls, street level shops, restaurants and cafes will create a dense and exhilarating affirmation of New York.
"The sky will be home again to a towering spire of 1776 feet high, an antenna Tower with gardens. Why gardens? Because gardens are a constant affirmation of life. A 1776 foot skyscraper rises above its predecessors, reasserting the pre-eminence of freedom and beauty, restoring the spiritual peak to the city, creating a building that speaks of our vitality in the face of danger and our optimism in the aftermath of tragedy. Life victorious."
The visitors enter into a dynamic and exhilarating architectural structure which offers a seamless organization of the artifacts and the path of the visitor. The entire building has been conceived as an adventure, both physical and spiritual in tracing the lineaments that reveal the intersection of different histories and the dynamics of Jewish Culture and its unfolding in contemporary life.
The living space of this Connecticut residence is formed by a spiraling ribbon of 18 planes, defined by 36 points connected by 54 lines. This pure and dynamic architectural form generates distinctive interior spaces while dramatically framing both near and distant landscape scenes. Large glass planes virtually disappear within the ribbon, allowing unimpeded picturesque views of 18th century hay meadows and giant oaks. Circulation through kitchen, living, dining, and sleeping areas is seamless and free-flowing, as is the distinction between interior and exterior space. Challenging both traditional and modern notions of “the house in the landscape,” this design gives nothing of itself up to its natural setting, but selectively incorporates the elements therein for the enhancement of both house and landscape.
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WRITINGS The Pilgrimage of Absolute architecture The Myth of Site Upside Down X Still-life with Red Predictions Proof of Things Invisible
Catching on fire
The Never-Ending Story
BOOK Breaking Ground - Daniel LIBESKIND Studio PROFILE - Daniel LIBESKIND architects
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