Thursday, August 11

Modern Minimalistic meets the Handmade

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The Miller house designed by iconic architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, epitomizes the international Modernist aesthetic—with an open and flowing layout, flat roof and stone and glass walls. The house is considered to be one of the finest expressions of American modernism. In 2000, the Miller House became a National Historic Landmark. 

But despite all these incredible features, my favorite bits about the house are the bright textiles and objects from around the globe. These accents bring the interiors to life. They also remind me of similar houses in Delhi built in the 1950’s and 1960’s in local brick and concrete. These houses had the requisite Spartan spaces of demanded by fashionable modern architecture. However, Indians being Indians cannot live without colours. So, the owners softened the starkness with traditional Indian textiles, tribal rugs and wooden screens. In the process, they shaped a residential typology that was a favorite of educated intellectual Indians in that era.  


The House is owned by Indianapolis Museum of Art and is open to visitors. All images courtesy of IMA.

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