美国,范思沃斯住宅(现代主义经典建筑)/密斯·凡·德·罗

范思沃斯住宅是为女医生伊迪丝·范思沃斯修建的周末度假屋,始建于1945年,在1951年落成。它优雅地坐落在美国伊利诺斯州普莱诺的原野中,有一种柏拉图式的完美秩序。这座玻璃亭宅位于芝加哥城外一面10英亩的僻静林地,福克斯河在其南部流淌。它充分利用周围的自然景致,体现了密斯在人居与自然之间建立强有力联系的理念。

这个单层住宅由8根工字钢柱构成,它们共同支撑着房顶和地面框架,既具有结构功能又具有表现力。玻璃安置在这些钢柱之间,从地板一直延伸到天花板。玻璃窗环绕整个住宅,使房间面向树林一展无余。密斯如此设计,既彰显了居住者和恬静的周围景致一气呵成的特点,又通过诸多树木实现他的私密性理念。在一次采访中,他对玻璃亭宅这种结构做了如下说明:“大自然也应该有自己的特色。我们一定不能因住宅的颜色和内部装饰而扰乱自然的氛围,反而更应该尝试使自然、居所以及人类三者结合,从而达到高度统一。”

为了使住宅采光良好,密斯将该住宅从地面上提升5英尺3英寸(约1.6米),并且只允许钢柱与地面接触。在钢柱之间,植物依然可以自由生长。为了实现这一理念,窗框也同样起到了地板支撑的作用。这样,便将法斯沃住宅的地面提升,使宽阔的台阶轻松地逐渐离开地面,好像是悬浮着延伸到住宅入口一样。除了住宅中间的墙体包围着浴室之外,整个平面设计都是完全开放的,真正采用了极简主义设计。

由于住宅离福克斯河约100英尺远,密斯考虑到了洪水的潜在威胁。他相信这种升高的设计能抵御所能预测到的百年不遇的洪水灾害。然而由于芝加哥地区的发展,该河的径流量有所增加,他并不能预计住宅会遭遇更多洪水灾害。正如1954年那样,河流水位涨高6英尺(约1.83米),达到百年来最高水位,使得洪水灌进了住宅。从现在的调查结果来看,从1954年开始,住宅内部遭遇了6次洪水侵袭,在1996年、1997年以及前不久的2008年,遭遇洪水灾害愈发频繁。

洪水泛滥诱发了一系列问题,如住宅的维护、室内通风不佳、成本超出预算等。人们不得不考虑这样的居所是否适宜居住。这类问题固然存在,但是法斯沃住宅所彰显的简单这一本质是毫无疑问的。密斯的设计不仅充满了艺术美感,而且也成为许多其他作品的灵感来源,正如菲利普·约翰逊对玻璃屋的设计就是取材于此。这种人造几何形态融入周围风景之中,恰如其分地诠释了简单至极的住宅理念。像密斯所说的那样,“如果能在住宅里欣赏到大自然的美景,意义就比直接置身大自然要深远得多。以这种方式融入自然,大自然就变成了居住者自身所拥有的美景。”


The Farnsworth House, built between 1945 and 1951 for Dr. Edith Farnsworth as a weekend retreat, is a platonic perfection of order gently placed in spontaneous nature in Plano, Illinois. Just right outside of Chicago in a 10-acre secluded wooded site with the Fox River to the south, the glass pavilion takes full advantage of relating to its natural surroundings, achieving Mies’ concept of a strong relationship between the house and nature.

The single-story house consists of eight I-shaped steel columns that support the roof and floor frameworks, and therefore are both structural and expressive. In between these columns are floor-to-ceiling windows around the entire house, opening up the rooms to the woods around it. The windows are what provide the beauty of Mies’ idea of tying the residence with its tranquil surroundings. His idea for shading and privacy was through the many trees that were located on the private site. Mies explained this concept in an interview about the glass pavilion stating, “Nature, too, shall live its own life. We must beware not to disrupt it with the color of our houses and interior fittings. Yet we should attempt to bring nature, houses, and human beings together into a higher unity.”

Mies intended for the house to be as light as possible on the land, and so he raised the house 5 feet 3 inches off the ground, allowing only the steel columns to meet the ground and the landscape to extend past the residence. In order to accomplish this, the mullions of the windows also provide structural support for the floor slab. The ground floor of the Farnsworth House is thereby elevated, and wide steps slowly transcend almost effortlessly off the ground, as if they were floating up to the entrance. Aside from walls in the center of the house enclosing bathrooms, the floor plan is completely open exploiting true minimalism.

With the Farnsworth house constructed about 100 feet from the Fox River, Mies recognized the dangers of flooding. He designed the house at an elevation that he bellieved would protect it from the highest predicted floods, which are anticipated every hundred years. In 1954 the river rose six feet above the one-hundred-year-mark and flooded the house. However, Mies was not able to anticipate the increase in water runoff caused by the development in the Chicago area which led to more floods. Current research states that the interior of the house has received flood waters on 6 occasions, beginning in 1954 and becoming more frequent having also flooded in 1996,1997, and just recently in 2008.

Although there were some problems with the maintenance of the house due to flooding and livability of the design that involved complaints about the poor ventilation of the interior as well as cost overruns, there is no doubt that the Farnsworth House is the essence of simplicity in its purest form. The brilliance in its artistic design became the inspiration for other works, such as Philip Johnson’s Glass House. The man-made geometric form creates a relationship the extraneous landscape surrounding it to exemplify “dwelling” in its simplest state. As Mies stated on his achievement, “If you view nature through the glass walls of the Farnsworth House, it gains a more profound significance than if viewed from the outside. That way more is said about nature—it becomes part of a larger whole.”