The Modern Form in the One-family Peruvian Housing 1950-1970 | Fernando Freire Forga

Gerrit Rietveld. Schröeder House in Utrecht, Netherlands, 1924. (Images obtained of the web)

The modern movement arises as consequence of the social ideology of the epoch, the artistic evolution, the technological reached advances and the new trends of life in the developed countries. Critics recount, that chronologically the modern architecture, is recognized after the artistic revolution happened during the forefronts of beginnings of the 20th century. The modernity, with a new look to the human development, bets for a reinvention in the architectural projection, having as base: the origins of the architecture (as essential need of the humanity, ” The functionality “), the technology reached by the man and the new materials ready to be a part of an architectural movement that does not have paragon in the universal history of the architecture.

In comparison with Europe and The United States, the Modern Architecture developed in Peru late, approximately 20 years after there were constructed the first European precedents recognized as icons of the modern architecture. The student reform carried out in 1946 in the faculty of Engineering of the National School of Engineering (current UNI) and the manifest of the Group I Spread in 1947 they represent the clearest and important movements of how the modern architecture joins our country and goes appropriating of the city of Lima, then to happen to provinces and to approach to the complete country about the decade of 1960.

This architectural interval ” modern – Peruvian ” understands a great number of buildings of great quality, where it appreciates a wise projection on the part of national and foreign architects (the above mentioned in minor number) that they understood to cabalidad this movement and that across his works they left us an architectural unavoidable legacy for the conformation of our cities, works of that we must take care, study and preserve.

At present, and for some years behind, Peru is crossing a constructive boom, the residential zones are changing and happening from a low density to the major one. The housings are demolished to be replaced by multifamiliar and commercial buildings; changing this way, and forever, the profile of our cities. The disappearance of one-family modern housings – as a result of consequence of the constructive national evolution – forces us to elaborate a that cannot be deferred summary, with the purpose of avoiding the total loss of magnificent projects constructed from middle of the 20th century, which form a part of our architectural history.

Parallel, in the academic national field, the education of the architecture is ensimismada in a series of conceptual incongruities – because of reason of the rezagos of a post-modernity trastocada – leaving of side the dogma of the modern architecture and his guessed right elementary beginning.

It is for it that the present document is orientated to study the one-family modern housings (constructed in Peru between the years of 1950 and 1970), emphasizing his architectural qualities and rescuing the beginning that govern it. Exhorting to reorientate, hereby, the development of our current architecture to a coherent area, of which we are witnesses across the selected works.

The structure elaborated for the present investigation divides in four fundamental parts: First, The Modern Form, where an approximation is done to the origin and the development of the modern architecture, both national and international. Second, Compiled Housings, which will use as example to identify and to analyze the modern form that shapes them. Third party, Conclusions, after the analysis developed for every housing, decide the conclusions obtained in relation to the Modern Architecture practised in our country. Quarter, Reflections, with relation to the academic area and the need to take again the modern dogma for the development of our current architecture.

For the first part, it turns out to be unavoidable to understand the modern architecture as consequence of a modern movement that was in preparation from the works of philosophers and thinkers of ends of the 18th century. To visualize the modern architecture as one more style in the architectural universal evolution, it will drive the reader to confuse the affirmations that have developed for this document. The Modern Form in the architecture (exempt from the mimesis to which the world was accustomed) is a proved wise person where they converge – it adds and rigorously – the functionality of the spaces projected with the constructive modern systems inside a formal composition.

Documents of support for this part are mentioned: The International Style of P. Johnson and H. R. Hitchcock and books elaborated by the architect Helio Piñón. Across the book The International Style, there is simplified the comprehension of the modern form in the architecture by means of the practice. Whereas the tests of Helium Pine kernel, it allows us to bring us near to the theoretical understanding of the genesis of the Modern Form and his coherent relation with the architectural production.

To develop the second part, there decided an interval of time corresponding to the development of the modern architecture in Peru: where it is known that it enters “academic” in the middle of the decade of 1940 to be consolidated in the decade of 1950 and to live through a national summit during the following decade.

The selection of compiled housings has been determined after observing held up the city and interviewing several architects of the way, who elegantly have collaborated in the possible accomplishment of this document. The magazine the Peruvian Architect has been also a rewatching source to identify modern housings that enjoy a high architectural level. Another determinant factor for the selection of the housings was the accessibility to the same ones, thanks to the current owners and / or architects been interested in the production of this work of investigation.

Possessing initially the city of Lima, there took the decision to include cities as Arequipa, Trujillo, Chiclayo and Piura, since for his urban growth, between 1950 and 1970, one supposed finding important housings for this study and managing this way to develop a work that was approaching the principal cities of Peru.

After visiting these cities we could observe that only Arequipa and Trujillo possess local architects, in this epoch predetermined for this investigation, whereas the modern housings in the cities of Chiclayo and Piura were projected, basically, by architects of Lima, which already had been identified and selected for this study. To possess local architects, since in Arequipa and Trujillo, it opens the possibility of finding architectural particularities not registered in the city of Lima.

The scheme of analysis for every housing corresponds to the structure of works realized by the Doctorate: The Modern Form of the ETSAB (Technical Top School of Architecture of Barcelona) of the Technical University of Catalonia, UPC. For the analysis of every selected housing a work has developed of re-drawn of planes, where they were included: the plants, courts and elevations. In some cases it was achieved to accede to documents like perspectives or sketches that explain additional the projection process of every housing.

For the third part, there are exposed a series of conclusions obtained as a result of these works of investigation. These conclusions favor to the exposition of a succession of reflections, which they will present in the fourth part of this document.

Later there is exposed a miscellany of images that understand part of the present work of investigation.

Fernando Freire Forga · Doctor Architect

Lima · july 2011 · Author of the Blog La Forma Moderna en Latinoamérica

Fernando Freire Forga

Fernando Freire Forga nace en Lima el 21 de marzo de 1977. Entre los años 1994 y 2000 realiza estudios de arquitectura en la Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas en la misma ciudad. En 1999 obtiene el primer premio en el Concurso a nivel nacional organizado por PROCOBRE-PERÚ con la tesis: Edificio Automatizado de Oficinas: “Usos del Cobre en la Arquitectura”.

Ha realizado estudios de Doctorado sobre Arquitectura Moderna en la ETSAB, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Barcelona en la Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña, España. Actualmente , se encuentra inmerso en el desarrollo de trabajos de recopilación e investigación de Arquitectura Moderna en el Perú. Es docente de la Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú y se desenvuelve como proyectista de manera independiente.

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