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Otto Koenigsberger and the Development of Tropical Architecture in India, 1939–1951

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... While tropical modern architecture was believed to be developed in London and then dispersed throughout the colonized cities in the tropics, Vandana Baweja's paper on "Otto Koenigsberger and the Development of Tropical Architecture in India, 1939-1951" challenged this idea. 6 The paper proved that tropical modern architecture originated in the tropics and the ideas of multiple architects such Leo De Syllas, George Atkinson, and Otto Koenigsberger ventured to London to form the Department of Tropical Architecture (1954)(1955)(1956)(1957)(1958)(1959)(1960)(1961)(1962)(1963)(1964)(1965)(1966)(1967)(1968)(1969)(1970)(1971) at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London. 7 In the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, architects in the tropics developed tropical architecture in the discipline of hygiene to design buildings that solved tropical health problems. ...
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Mid-century modern architecture developed after the Second World War as numerous technological advancements allowed for open house plans with the increased use of glass and a reconfiguration of indoor-outdoor relationships. Rufus Nims, a Miami architect (1913–2005), hybridized emerging ideas of mid-century modernism with climatic design that emerged in field of tropical architecture after the Second World War. Nims experimented with homes that had disappearing walls; and that could be comfortable in the hot and humid climate of Florida. This paper will analyze Rufus Nims’ role in the development of Florida Tropical Architecture, through his seamless integration of indoor and outdoor spaces. Further, this study will assess how Rufus Nims used tropical architecture strategies in South Florida, such as screened-in porches, disappearing walls, and landscape integration. The paper argues that Rufus Nims’ architectural ideas were based on emerging redefinition of the indoor-outdoor spatial relationships as was evident in the broader mid-century modern movement and Florida Tropical Architecture.
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