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Hugh Ferriss and The Metropolis of Tomorrow

More diving through my archives – and this time it’s a page about architect Hugh Ferriss and his monograph The Metropolis of Tomorrow.

Hugh Ferriss was a 20th century architect who influenced many subsequent generations. In his visionary 1929 book, Ferriss sets out his vision of  the structure of future cities. The book is divided in three parts: a description of New York as Ferriss saw it , with drawings of the most important building built in the 1920s; a review of new architectural trends, new ideas, and new materials and techniques; and finally, and most amazingly, a possible layout for a visionary city, dominated by steel and glass.

I mean, just look at these drawings: it’s Gotham and Metropolis and Brazil and THX1138 all rolled into one, every single utopian or dystopian movie set right here, dreams in black and white.

I love beyond all reason his diagram dividing of the city in to three sectors:

The city could be made in the image of man

“Building like crystals… walls of translucent glass… sheer glass blocks sheathing a steel grille… no gothic branch, no acanthus leaf, no recollection of the plant world. A mineral kingdom. Gleaming stalagmites. Forms as cold as ice. Mathematics. Night in the science zone.”


You can read the whole page (in French) here.




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