Josef P. Kleihues (1933-2004) has achieved international recognition with his work as planning director of the "Internationale Bauausstellung" in Berlin (International Building Exhibition, IBA 1984/87) and as architect for a large number of remarkable buildings and projects.

The Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, completed in 1996, was his first building in the USA. It is sited near the "Magnificent Mile", between the Water Tower and Lake Michigan, and houses the MCA's prestigious collection of contemporary art, also offering a great deal of space for temporary exhibitions and other activities. The particular quality of the new building lies in the fact that it appears closed from the outside but inside turns out to be generous and open.

The Chicago museum places Kleihues in the long line of German architects who have planned and built in this important architectural metropolis. His particular concern here was to examine the different architectural traditions of Europe and America.



Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. Josef Paul Kleihues

by Andrea Mesecke and Thorsten Scheer

with a foreword by Udo Kultermann, photographs by Hélène Binet, Berlin: Gebr. Mann Verlag, 1996

Auswahl Publikationen
Josef Paul Kleihues. Werke 1966-1980
Raumklang . U-Bahnhof Lohring - Bochum
Zeche Zollverein . UNESCO Weltkulturerbe
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago
Die Volkswagen Architektur
Allgemeines Künstlerlexikon
Stadt der Architektur - Berlin
Josef Paul Kleihues - Architekt
Das Dortmunder Modell Bauwesen . Studienführer für Architekten und Bauingenieure
Das Kantdreieck
Josep Puig i Cadafalch
Artikel und Aufsätze









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The publication takes this examination by Kleihues as a starting-point for demonstrating the various aspects of the place and to bring out the significance of the new building by the fact that it appears in the spirit of the "genius loci" as the point where different historical and urban qualities meet, and invites the viewer to continue to address these.

For this reason this detailed documentation of the building is complemented by chapters on the urban development of the site, the Chicago School of Architecture and the German architects who planned and built in Chicago from the mid 19th century.