Docomomo US encourages members, colleagues, scholars, students and architecture buffs to submit new buildings and sites to the Explore Modern project. Compile basic pieces of information and submit it to us.
Boston Government Center
Large scale redevelopment in Boston created opportunities for cultural and civic organizations to reinvent and re-establish themselves in the mid twentieth century. The centrally located Scollay Square, a rabbit’s warren of streets and older buildings, gave way to the epic forms of the Boston Government Center. Designed by master architect Paul Rudolph, the building was constructed a block away from the Brutalist City Hall, and is marked by a symphony of swirling walls and stairways in rough hewn concrete, metal, and glass. Monumental buildings such as the Government Center and City Hall, along with their surrounding plazas, marked the newly configured administrative hub of the city government, designed to manifest public confidence in the future of Boston. (Adapted from Boston Modern: The Spirit of Reinvention, published by the National Trust for Historic Preservation)
Commissioned just after World War II, architect Marcel Breuer designed the house for Bertram and Phyllis Geller to meet the needs of their growing American family. The house was the first built by Breuer incorporating his influential concept of the “binuclear” house, in which living and sleeping areas of the house are separated into different formal elements. The concept consisted of two elements which have been joined, roughly in the shape of an “H.” The center of the “H” divides the daytime and nighttime uses: separating “…presentable spaces from the necessarily chaotic domain of children.”
Geller I is one of only four homes designed and built on Long Island by Breuer, another being a second home for the Geller family in Lawrence. Geller I was also home to custom cutout plywood chairs that were made specifically to fit the interior aesthetic, which have been considered a representation of "a new direction in his furniture design" (Herzig). As both the start to his accomplishments in designing binuclear homes and a landmark in his career as a furniture designer, Geller I has both cultural and historical significance in the world of architectural design.
Geller I was demolished on January 26, 2022 despite our efforts.