Marcel Breuer

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Marcel Breuer
Breuer-Main entry image.png
Marcel Lajos Breuer

(1902-05-21)May 21, 1902
DiedJuly 1, 1981(1981-07-01) (aged 79)
New York City, USA
AwardsAIA Gold Medal (1968)
BuildingsThe Robinson House, UNESCO headquarters, Met Breuer, IBM La Gaude
DesignWassily Chair, Cesca Chair
Signature of Marcel Breuer.svg

Marcel Lajos Breuer (/ˈbrɔɪ.ər/ BROY-ər; 21 May 1902 – 1 July.. 1981), was a Hungarian-born modernist architect and furniture designer. At the Bauhaus he designed the Wassily Chair and the Cesca Chair, which The New York Times have called some of the most important chairs of the 20th century.[1] Breuer extended the sculpture vocabulary he had developed in the carpentry shop at the Bauhaus into a personal architecture that made him one of the world's most popular architects at the peak of 20th-century design. His work includes art museums, libraries, college buildings, office buildings, and residences. Many are in a Brutalist architecture style, including the former IBM Research and Development facility which was the birthplace of the first personal computer. He is regarded as one of the great innovators of modern furniture design and one of the most-influential exponents of the International Style.[2][3]

Life, work and inventions[edit]

Commonly known to his friends and associates as Lajkó (/ˈlk/ LY-koh; the diminutive of his middle name),[4] Breuer was born in Pécs, Hungary, to a Jewish family.[5] He was forced to renounce his faith in order to marry Martha Erps due to anti-Semitism in Germany at the time.[6]


Marcel Breuer left his hometown at the age of 18 in search of artistic training and, after a short period spent at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, became one of the first and youngest students at the Bauhaus – a radical arts and crafts school that Walter Gropius had founded in Weimar just after the First World War.[7] He was recognized by Gropius as a significant talent and was quickly put at the head of the Bauhaus carpentry shop.[8] Gropius was to remain a lifelong mentor for a man who was 19 years his junior.

After the school moved from Weimar to Dessau in 1925, Breuer returned from a brief sojourn in Paris to join older faculty members such as Josef Albers, Wassily Kandinsky, and Paul Klee as a Master, eventually teaching in its newly established department of architecture.

Recognized for his invention of bicycle-handlebar-inspired tubular steel furniture,[4] Breuer lived off his design fees at a time in the late 1920s and early 1930s when the architectural commissions he was looking for were few and far-between. The structural characteristics of his wooden furniture showed the influence of Dutch designers Gerrit Rietveld and Theo van Doesburg.[9] He was known to such giants as Le Corbusier and Mies van der Rohe, whose architectural vocabulary he was later to adapt as part of his own, but hardly considered an equal by them who were his senior by 15 and 16 years.[4] Despite the widespread popular belief that one of the most famous of Breuer's tubular steel chairs, the Wassily Chair was designed for Breuer's friend[4] Wassily Kandinsky, it was not; Kandinsky admired Breuer's finished chair design, and only then did Breuer make an additional copy for Kandinsky's use in his home. When the chair was re-released in the 1960s, it was named "Wassily" by its Italian manufacturer, who had learned that Kandinsky had been the recipient of one of the earliest post-prototype units.

It was Gropius who assigned Breuer interiors at the 1927 Weissenhof Estate. In 1928 he opened a practice in Berlin, devoted himself to interior design and furniture design and in 1932 he built his first house, the Harnischmacher in Wiesbaden. The house was white, with two floors and a flat roof; part of it and the terraces rose freely on supports. [10]


Marcel Breuer. Long Chair, ca. 1935–36 Brooklyn Museum

In 1935, at Gropius's suggestion, Breuer relocated to London.[11][12]

While in London, Breuer was employed by Jack Pritchard at the Isokon company; one of the earliest proponents of modern design in the United Kingdom. Breuer designed his Long Chair as well as experimenting with bent and formed plywood, inspired by designs by Finnish architect Alvar Aalto.[7] Between 1935 and 1937 he worked in practice with the English Modernist F. R. S. Yorke with whom he designed a number of houses. After a brief time as the Isokon's head of design in 1937, he emigrated to the United States.[7]


In 1937, Gropius accepted the appointment as chairman of Harvard's Graduate School of Design and again Breuer followed his mentor to join the faculty in Cambridge, Massachusetts.[4] The two men formed a partnership that was to greatly influence the establishment of an American way of designing modern houses – spread by their great collection of wartime students including Paul Rudolph, Eliot Noyes, I. M. Pei, Ulrich Franzen, John Johansen, and Philip Johnson.[4] One of the most intact examples of Breuer's furniture and interior design work during this period is the Frank House in Pittsburgh, designed with Gropius as a Gesamtkunstwerk.

Breuer broke with his father-figure, Walter Gropius, in 1941 over a very minor issue but the major reason may have been to get himself out from under the better-known name that dominated their practice.[11] Breuer had married their secretary, Constance Crocker Leighton, and after a few more years in Cambridge, moved down to New York City in 1946[4] (with Harry Seidler as his chief draftsman) to establish a practice that was centered there for the rest of his life.

New York[edit]

The Geller House I of 1945 is one of the first to employ Breuer's concept of the 'binuclear' house, with separate wings for the bedrooms and for the living / dining / kitchen area, separated by an entry hall, and with the distinctive 'butterfly' roof (two opposing roof surfaces sloping towards the middle, centrally drained) that became part of the popular modernist style vocabulary. Breuer built two houses for himself in New Canaan, Connecticut: one from 1947 to 1948, and the other from 1951 to 1952. A demonstration house set up in the MoMA garden in 1949 caused a flurry of interest in the architect's work, and an appreciation written by Peter Blake. When the show was over, the "House in the Garden" was dismantled and barged up the Hudson River for reassembly on the Rockefeller property in Pocantico Hills near Sleepy Hollow. His first two important institutional buildings were the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris[4] finished in 1955 and the monastic Master Plan and Church at Saint John's Abbey in Minnesota[4] in 1954 (again, in part, on the recommendation of Gropius, a "competitor" for the job, who told the monks they needed a younger man who could finish the job.) These commissions were a turning point in Breuer's career: a move to larger projects after years of residential commissions and the beginning of Breuer's adoption of concrete as his primary medium.

In 1966 Breuer completed the Whitney Museum of American Art at 945 Madison Avenue on Manhattan's Upper East Side. The Whitney was in the building that Breuer designed between 1966 and 2014 before moving to a new building designed by Renzo Piano at 99 Gansevoort Street in the West Village/Meatpacking District neighborhoods of Lower Manhattan.[11]

Headquarters of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Breuer designed the Washington, D.C., headquarters building for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development which was completed in 1968. While the building received some initial praise, in recent decades it has received widespread criticism. Former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Jack Kemp once described the building as "10 floors of basement."[13] Another former Secretary, Shaun Donovan, has noted that "the building itself is among the most reviled in all of Washington—and with good reason."[14] Many critics have argued that Breuer's design is unoriginal, and essentially mimics the UNESCO Headquarters and IBM Research Center which he designed several years earlier.[12][15]

Throughout the almost 30 years and nearly 100 buildings that followed, Breuer worked with a number of partners and associates with whom he openly and insistently shared design credit: Pier Luigi Nervi at UNESCO; Herbert Beckhard, Robert Gatje, Hamilton Smith and Tician Papachristou in New York, Mario Jossa and Harry Seidler in Paris. Their contribution to his life work has largely been credited properly, though the critics and public rightly recognized a "Breuer Building" when they saw one.

Breuer's architectural vocabulary moved through at least four recognizable phases:

  1. The white box and glass school of the International style that he adapted for his early houses in Europe and the USA: the Harnischmacher House, Gropius House, Frank House, and his own first house in Lincoln, Massachusetts.[16]
  2. The punctured wooden walls that characterized his famous 1948 "House in the Garden" for MoMA and a series of relatively modest houses for knowledgeable university faculty families in the 50s. This included the first of his houses in New Canaan, Connecticut, with its balcony hung off a cantilever.
  3. The modular prefabricated concrete panel façades that first enclosed his favorite IBM Laboratory in La Gaude, near Nice, France, and went on to be used in many of his institutional buildings plus the whole town at Flaine. Some critics spoke of repetitiveness but Breuer quoted a professional friend: "I can’t design a whole new system every Monday morning."
  4. The stone and shaped concrete that he used for unique and memorable commissions: his best-known project, the Met Breuer (formerly the Whitney Museum of American Art), the Muskegon and St John's Abbey Churches, the Atlanta-Fulton Central Public Library, and his second house in New Canaan.

Breuer was awarded the Gold Medal of the American Institute of Architects at their 100th annual convention in 1968 at Portland, Oregon. In an ironic timing of events, it coincided with general criticism of one of America's favorite architects for his willingness to design a multi-story office building on top of Grand Central Station. The project was never built. It cost him many friends and supporters although its defeat by the US Supreme Court established the right of New York and other cities to protect their landmarks. During his lifetime, Breuer rarely acknowledged the influence of other architects’ work upon his own but he had certainly picked up the use of rough board-formed concrete from Le Corbusier and the noble dignity of his second New Canaan house seems to have directly descended from MiesBarcelona Pavilion. Shortly before his death, he told an interviewer that he considered his principal contribution to have been the adaptation of the work of older architects to the needs of modern society. He died in his apartment in Manhattan in 1981, leaving his wife Connie (died 2002) and his son Tamas. His partners kept offices going in his name and with his permission in Paris and New York for several years but, with their eventual retirement, each is now closed.

Chronology of Breuer's work[edit]

Marcel Breuer. Table, Model B19, ca. 1928 Brooklyn Museum

Breuer donated his professional papers and drawings to Syracuse University library beginning in the late 1960s. The remainder of his papers, including most of his personal correspondence, were donated to the Archives of American Art, Washington, D.C., between 1985 and 1999 by Breuer's wife, Constance.[17]

At Bauhaus – Weimar and Dessau[edit]

  • 1921 The African chair with Gunta Stölzl (while still a student)
  • 1923 Furniture and built-in cabinetry for the Haus am Horn, Weimar (while still a student)
  • 1925 First all-tubular steel chair (the Wassily)
  • 1925 Stool / Side Table of tubular steel (leading to cantilevered chair)
  • 1926 Gropius, Moholy-Nagy, Kandinsky, and Muche Interiors– the Bauhaus – Dessau, Germany
  • 1927 Piscator Apartment – Berlin, Germany
  • 1927 Weissenhof Siedlung – Gropius and Stam Apartment Interiors – Stuttgart, Germany
  • 1928 First cantilevered steel chair (the Cesca)
  • 1929 Model B 55 cantilevered steel chair[18]

Independent practice – Berlin and Zurich[edit]

Doldertal Apartments (1935)
  • 1931 Berlin Building Exhibition – "Haus fur ein Sportsmann" – Berlin, Germany
  • 1932 Harnischmacher House I – Wiesbaden, Germany
  • 1954 Harnischmacher House II – Wiesbaden, Germany
  • 1932 Wohnbedarf Furniture Stores – Basel and Zurich, Switzerland – for Sigfried Giedion
  • 1935 Doldertal Apartments – Zurich, Switzerland – with A and E Roth for Sigfried Giedion

With Isokon and in partnership with FRS Yorke – London[edit]

  • 1935 Isokon furniture company – Plywood Tables and Stacking Chairs– London, England
  • 1936 Isokon Furniture Company – Reclining Plywood Chairs– London, England
  • 1936 Ventris Apartment in Highpoint – London, England
  • 1936 Model for the "Civic Center of the Future" – with FRS Yorke
  • 1936 Gane's Exhibition PavilionBristol, England – with FRS Yorke
  • 1936 Sea Lane House, East Preston, West Sussex
  • 1938 Houses in Hampshire, Sussex, and Eton College, England – with FRS Yorke

At Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts with Gropius[edit]

  • 1938 Gropius House – Lincoln, Massachusetts – with Walter Gropius
  • 1938 Hagerty House – Cohasset, Massachusetts – with Walter Gropius
  • 1939 Breuer House – Lincoln, Massachusetts – with Walter Gropius
  • 1939 Ford House – Lincoln, Massachusetts – with Walter Gropius
  • 1939 Frank House – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania – with Walter Gropius
  • 1939 New York World's Fair – Pennsylvania State Exhibition –– with Walter Gropius
  • 1940 Chamberlain Cottage – Wayland, Massachusetts – with Walter Gropius[19]
  • 1941 Weizenblatt House – Asheville, North Carolina – with Walter Gropius
  • 1941 Defense Housing for Aluminum Workers – New Kensington, Pennsylvania – with Walter Gropius

Independent practice while still at Harvard[edit]

  • 1945 Project for Serviceman's Memorial – Cambridge, Massachusetts – with Lawrence S Anderson
  • 1945 Geller House I – Lawrence, New York
  • 1969 Geller House II – Lawrence, New York – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1946 Tompkins House – Hewlett Harbor, New York

Independent practice in New York City with associates[edit]

Ariston Club (1948) – Mar del Plata, Argentina
Rufus Stillman House I, Litchfield, Connecticut (1950)
Dexter M. Ferry Cooperative House, Vassar College (1950)
UNESCO Headquarters – Paris, France (1958)
Seymour Krieger House, Bethesda, Maryland (1958)
Hooper House II, Baltimore County, Maryland (1959)
St. John's Abbey Church at the campus of Saint John's University, 1961
Mary College University of Mary (1960)
Colston Hall, Bronx Community College (1961) Originally a New York University campus.
  • 1947 Breuer House – New Canaan I, Connecticut (cantilevered)
  • 1951 Breuer House – New Canaan II, Connecticut (rubble stone)
  • 1947 Mills House – New Canaan, Connecticut
  • 1947 Ariston ClubMar del Plata, Argentina – with Eduardo Catalano
  • 1947 Robinson House – Williamstown, Massachusetts
  • 1948 Kniffen House – New Canaan, Connecticut – with Eliot Noyes
  • 1948 Scott House – Dennis, Massachusetts
  • 1948 Thompson House – Ligonier, Pennsylvania
  • 1949 Kepes and Breuer Cottages – Wellfleet, Massachusetts
  • 1953 Edgar Stillman Cottage – Wellfleet, Massachusetts
  • 1963 Wise Cottage – Wellfleet, Massachusetts
  • 1949 Hooper House I – Baltimore, Maryland
  • 1959 Hooper House II – Baltimore, Maryland – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1949 House in the Museum Garden at Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York
  • 1950 Tilley House – Red Bank, New Jersey – based upon the MoMA House
  • 1950 Lauck House – Princeton, New Jersey – based upon the MoMA House
  • 1950 Foote House – Chappaqua, New York – based upon the MoMA House
  • 1950 Marshad House – Croton-on-Hudson, New York
  • 1950 Wolfson Trailer House – Pleasant Valley, New York
  • 1950 Clark House – Orange, Ct
  • 1950 Englund House – Pleasantville, New York
  • 1950 Hanson House – Huntington, New York
  • 1950 Rufus Stillman House I – Litchfield, Connecticut
  • 1965 Rufus Stillman House II – Litchfield, Connecticut – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1974 Rufus Stillman House III – Litchfield, Connecticut – with Tician Papachristou
  • 1950 Peter and Karen McComb House – Poughkeepsie, New York
  • 1950 Ferry Cooperative Dormitory at Vassar College – Poughkeepsie, New York
  • 1951 Pack House – Scarsdale, New York
  • 1951 Witalis House – Kings Point, New York
  • 1951 Sarah Lawrence College – Arts Center – Bronxville, New York
  • 1951 Grosse Pointe Public Library in Grosse Pointe, Michigan
  • 1951 Abraham & Straus – Exterior Façade – Hemptead, New York
  • 1952 Caesar Cottage – Lakeville, Connecticut
  • 1952 Levy House – Princeton, New Jersey
  • 1953 Torin Corp – Manufacturing Plant –Oakville, Ontario – Canada
  • ’’1954’’ Crall House - Gates Mills, Ohio
  • 1956 Torin Corp – Manufacturing Plant– Van Nuys, California – with Craig Ellwood
  • 1963 Torin Corp – Machine Division– Torrington, Connecticut – with Robert Gatje
  • 1964 Torin Corp – Manufacturing Plant in Nivelles, Belgium, with Hamilton Smith
  • 1966 Torin Corp – Administration Building– Torrington, Connecticut – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1966 Torin Corp – Manufacturing Plant – Swindon, England – with Robert Gatje
  • 1968 Torin Corp – Manufacturing Plant – Rochester, Indiana – with Robert Gatje
  • 1971 Torin Corp – Technical Center – Torrington, Connecticut – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1976 Torin Corp – Manufacturing Plant– Penrith Australia –with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1953 Saint John's Abbey and University – Master Plan – Collegeville, Minnesota – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1955 Saint John's Abbey – Monastery Wing – Collegeville, Minnesota – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1959 Saint John's University – St. Thomas Aquinas Hall – Collegeville, Minnesota – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1961 Saint John's Abbey – Church and Bell Banner – Collegeville, Minnesota – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1966 Alcuin Library at Saint John's University in Collegeville, Minnesota, with Hamilton Smith
  • 1966 Saint John's University – Peter Engel Science Building – Collegeville, Minnesota – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1967 Saint John's University – St. Patrick, St. Boniface, St. Bernard Halls – Collegeville, Minnesota – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1968 Saint John's University – Ecumenical Institute – Collegeville, Minnesota – with Robert Gatje
  • 1953 Northfield Elementary School – Litchfield, Connecticut – with O’Connor & Kilham
  • 1956 Bantam Elementary School – Bantam, Connecticut – with O’Connor & Kilham
  • 1956 Litchfield High School (Litchfield, Connecticut) – with O’Connor & Kilham
  • 1954 Neumann House – Croton-on-Hudson
  • 1954 Snower House – Kansas City, Kansas – with Robert Gatje
  • 1954 Grieco House – Andover, Massachusetts
  • 1954 O E McIntyre, Inc – Manufacturing Plant – Westbury, New York – with William Landsberg
  • 1954 Starkey House – Duluth, Minnesota – with Herbert Beckhard and Robert Gatje
  • 1954 Gagarin House – Litchfield, Connecticut – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1955 Connecticut Junior Republic – Litchfield, Connecticut – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1956 Karsten House – Owings Mill, Maryland
  • 1957 Laaff House – Andover, Massachusetts – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1957 De Bijenkorf Department Store – Rotterdam, the Netherlands – with A Elzas
  • 1957 Members' Housing at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey – with Robert Gatje
  • 1958 UNESCO Headquarters – Paris, France – with Pier Luigi Nervi and Bernard Zehrfuss
  • 1958 United States Embassy – The Hague, the Netherlands
  • 1958 Van Leer Office Building – Amstelveen, the Netherlands
  • 1958 Staehelin House – Feldmeilen, Switzerland – with Herbart Beckhard
  • 1958 Krieger House – Bethesda, Maryland
  • 1959 Westchester Reform Temple – Scarsdale, New York – with William Landsberg
  • 1960 Library and Administration Building at Hunter College (now Lehman College) in The Bronx, New York – with Robert Gatje
  • 1959 Annunciation Priory – Convent – Bismarck, North Dakota – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1968 Annunciation Priory – Mary CollegeBismarck, North Dakota – with Tician Papachristou
  • 1960 McMullen Beach House – Mantoloking, New Jersey – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1960 Resort Town Flaine – Master Plan – Haute-Savoie, France – with Herbert Beckhard
  • since 1969 Resort Town Flaine – Over fifty buildings with Robert Gatje and Mario Jossa
  • 1961 New York University – Dormitory and Student Center – the Bronx, New York – with Robert Gatje (Campus of Bronx Community College after 1974)
  • 1961 & 1970 New York University – Technology Buildings – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1961 IBM La Gaude – Research Center – La Gaude, France – with Robert Gatje
  • since 1968 IBM France Extensions – La Gaude – with Robert Gatje and Mario Jossa
  • 1961 Kacmarcik House – St Paul, Minnesota
St. Francis De Sales Catholic Church, Muskegon, Michigan (1966)
Clarksburg-Harrison Public Library in Clarksburg, West Virginia (1975)

Practice in New York, with eventual partners[edit]

  • 1963 Fairview Heights Apartments – Ithaca, New York – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1966 Koerfer House – Moscia (Tessin), Switzerland – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1966 The Whitney Museum of American Art third location – New York – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1966 St. Francis de Sales Church – Muskegon, Michigan – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1966 ZUP de Bayonne – Master Plan & Apartments– Bayonne, France – with Robert Gatje
  • 1967 Laboratoires Sarget-Ambrine – Headquarters – Merignac, France – with Robert Gatje
  • 1968 Department of HUD – Headquarters – Washington, D.C. – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1968 IBM – Master Plan and Manufacturing Center – Boca Raton, Florida – with Robert Gatje
  • since 1970 IBM Boca Extensions – with Robert Gatje
  • 1968 Project for Grand Central Tower – New York – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1969 Armstrong Rubber/Pirelli Tire Building
  • 1969 Soriano House – Greenwich, Connecticut – with Tician Papachristou
  • 1970 University of Massachusetts – Campus Center – Amherst, Massachusetts – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1970 Yale University – Becton Laboratory Building – New Haven, Connecticut – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1970 Cleveland Museum of Art – Education Wing – Cleveland, Ohio – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1970 Armstrong Rubber Company – Headquarters – New Haven, Connecticut – with Robert Gatje
  • 1970 Baldegg Convent – "Mother House" – Lucerne, Switzerland – with Robert Gatje
  • 1971 Cleveland Trust Company – Headquarters – Cleveland, Ohio – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1971 Bryn Mawr School for Girls – Lower and Elementary – Baltimore, Maryland – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1973 Sayer House – Glanville, France – with Mario Jossa and Robert Gatje
  • 1974 American Press Institute – Conference Center – Reston, Virginia – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1974 SNET – Telephone Systems Building – Torrington, Connecticut – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1975 Grand Coulee Dam – Third Power Plant – Grand Coulee, WA – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1978 Grand Coulee Dam – Visitors Arrival Center – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1975 Mundipharma – Hqs and Mfg Bldg – Limburg, Germany – with Robert Gatje
  • 1975 Clarksburg Harrison Public Library – Clarksburg, West Virginia – with Hamilton Smith
  • 1976 Department of HEW – Headquarters – Washington, D.C. – with Herbert Beckhard
  • 1977 SUNY@ BuffaloFurnas Hall - School of Engineering and Applied Sciences – Amherst, New York – with Robert Gatje
  • 1980 Atlanta Central Public LibraryAtlanta – with Hamilton Smith


The National Building Museum in Washington, D.C., held an exhibition dedicated to the work of Marcel Breuer titled Marcel Breuer: Design and Architecture (November 3, 2007 - February 17, 2008).[20]

Filmmaker James Crump has directed Breuer's Bohemia, a feature documentary film that examines Breuer's experimental house designs in New England following the Second World War. The film includes rare interviews and footage of Breuer, artist Alexander Calder, playwright and essayist Arthur Miller and others from their storied milieu. Breuer's Bohemia is accompanied by a companion book to be published September 14, 2021 by The Monacelli Press.[21][22]

See also[edit]

Selected bibliography[edit]

Books and pamphlets on Breuer[edit]

  • Abercrombie, Stanley. Koerfer House (with Herbert Beckhard), Moscia, Tessin, Switzerland 1963-6, Stillman House III (with Tician Papachristou), Litchfield, Connecticut 1972-74. Tokyo: A.D. A. Edita Tokyo, 1977.
  • Argan, Giulio Carlo. Marcel Breuer, Disegno Industriale e Architettura. Milano: Görlich, 1957.
  • Armesto, Antonio, ed. Marcel Breuer: Casas Americans. Barcelona: G. Gili, 2001.
  • Blake, Peter. Marcel Breuer: Architect and Designer. New York: 1949.
  • ———., ed. Sun and Shadow: The Philosophy of an Architect. New York: Dodd, Mead [1955].
  • Chaljub, Benedicte. Marcel Breuer à Flaine – Portrait. Le Conseil d'Architecture, d'Urbanisme et de l'Environnement de Haute-Savoie, 2014.
  • Cobbers, Arnt. Marcel Breuer, 1902-1981: Form Giver of the Twentieth Century. London: Taschen, 2007.
  • Crump, James, Breuer's Bohemia. New York: The Monacelli Press/Penguin Random House, forthcoming 2021.[23]
  • Driller, Joachim. Marcel Breuer: das architektonische Frühwerk bis 1950. Ph.D. Thesis, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität, Freiburg i.Br., 1990.
  • ———. Breuer Houses. Translated by Mark Cole and Jeremy Verrinder. London: Phaidon Press Limited, 2000.
  • ———. Marcel Breuer: Die Wohnhäuser, 1923-1973. Stuttgart: Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, 1998.
  • Droste, Magdalena and Manfred Ludewig. Marcel Breuer Design. Köln: Benedikt Taschen, 1994.
  • Earles, William D. The Harvard Five in New Canaan: Midcentury Modern Houses by Marcel Breuer, Landis Gores, John Johansen, Philip Johnson, Eliot Noyes and Others. New York: W. W. Norton, 2006.
  • Galema, Wijnand and Fransje Hooimeijer. Bouwen aan diplomatie: De Amerikaanse ambassade in Den Haag Marcel Breuer, 1956 – 1959. Hague: Cultuurhistorische verkenning, 2008.
  • Gatje, Robert F. Marcel Breuer: A Memoir. New York: The Monacelli Press, 2000.
  • Howard, Shirley Reiff. Marcel Breuer, Concrete and the Cross. Muskegon, Michigan.: Hackley Art Museum, 1978.
  • Hyman, Isabelle. Marcel Breuer, Architect. The Career and the Buildings. New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 2001.
  • Izzo, Alberto and Camillo Gubitosi, eds. Marcel Breuer: Architettura 1921-1980. Firenze: Centro Di, 1981.
  • Jones, Cranston. Buildings and Projects, 1921-1961. New York: Praeger, 1962.
  • Kepes, Gyorgy, ed. The Man-Made Object. New York: G. Braziller, 1966.
  • Masello, David. Architecture Without Rules: The Houses of Marcel Breuer and Herbert Beckhard. New York: W. W. Norton, 1993.
  • Pearson, Christopher E. M. Designing UNESCO: Art, Architecture and International Politics at Mid-Century. Burlington, Vermont.: Ashgate Publishing Company, 2010.
  • Papachristou, Tician. Marcel Breuer, New Buildings and Projects. New York: Praeger, 1970.
  • Schneck, Adolf G., ed. Der Stuhl: Stuhltypen aus verschiedenen Ländern und Versuche neuzeitlicher Lösungen in Ansichten und Masszeichnungen. Stuttgart: Hoffmann, 1928.........
  • Stoddard, Whitney S. Adventure in Architecture: Building the New Saint John's. New York: Longmans, Green, 1958.
  • Thimmesh, Hilary. Marcel Breuer and a Committee of Twelve Plan a Church: A Monastic Memoir. Collegeville, Minnesota: Saint John's University Press, 2011.
  • Young, Victoria M. Saint John's Abbey Church: Marcel Breuer and the Creation of a Modern Sacred Space. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2014

Exhibition catalogues[edit]

  • Breuer's Whitney: an Anniversary Exhibition. New York: Whitney Museum of American Art, 1996.
  • A Design Student's Guide to the New York World's Fair. New York: PM Magazine and Laboratory School of Industrial Design, 1939.
  • Marcel Breuer: an Exhibition organized by the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, [1972].
  • Bergdoll, Barry and Leah Dickerson. Bauhaus 1919-1933: Workshops for Modernity. New York: Museum of Modern Art, 2009.
  • Scheffler, Renate, ed. Marcel Breuer: Ausstellung im Bauhaus-Archiv. Berlin: Bauhaus-Archiv, [1975].
  • von Vegesack, Alexander and Mathias Remmele, eds. Marcel Breuer: Design and Architecture. Weil am Rhein: Vitra Design Museum, 2003.
  • Wilk, Christopher. Marcel Breuer: Furniture and Interiors. London: Architectural Press, 1981.

Journal articles[edit]

  • "A. & S. – Nassau Store Designed to Provide Main-Store Facilities in Outlying Area." Architectural Record (February 1951).
  • "Air Line Office with a Lift." Architectural Record (April 1946).
  • "Aluminum City Terrace Housing." Architectural Forum (July 1944): 65-76.
  • "A Beach Club to Sell a View." Architectural Record (July 1948).
  • "The Breuer House at the Museum of Modern Art New York." The Architect and Building News (20 May 1949).
  • "La Case di Marcel Breuer nel Connecticut." Domus, no. 233 (1949).
  • "Casa Para la Familia que Crece." Nuestra Arquitectura 21, no. 242 (September 1949).
  • "Casa rustica", Domus (Sep 1949): 1-4.
  • "The Case of the Aging House: How it Was Given a New Lease on Life." House and Garden (April 1951).
  • "De Bijenkorf te Rotterdam." Bouwkundig Weekblad (24 April 1956).
  • "Discoveries in Living." Science Illustrated (April 1942): 65-95.
  • "A Dollar Buys More Room." Science Illustrated (April 1942).
  • "Dormitory Interiors." Architectural Record (April 1946).
  • "Elementary School: Bantam, Connecticut." Progressive Architecture (February 1957).
  • "Factory by Marcel Breuer is Bright and Handsome-All Around." Architectural Forum (February 1955).
  • "Fireplace: House in New York." The Architect and Building News (14 October 1949).
  • "For Practice in Housekeeping." Architectural Record (June 1950).
  • "Four American Houses." The Architectural Review (November 1939).
  • "A Garden City of the Future." The Architects’ Journal (26 March 1936).
  • "Geller House, Lawrence, Long Island." Progressive Architecture (February 1947).
  • "Guest Architect in the Netherlands." Katholick Beowblad (vol. xxvi, no. 21).
  • "Grand magasin à Rotterdam." [unknown publication] [French]
  • "Habitations 50." L’architecture d'aujourd’hui ( July 1950): 35-48.
  • "A House Fitted to the Berkshire Hills." Architectural Record (February 1949).
  • "House for the Growing Family." Architectural Forum (May 1949): 94-101.
  • "Houses by F.R.S. Yorke and Marcel Breuer." Architectural Review (January 1939): 29-35.
  • "Marcel Breuer." Interiors (September 1977): 98-109.
  • "Marcel Breuer: almacenes, en Rotterdam." Revista Informes de la construcción (April 1956).
  • "Marcel Breuer Builds for Himself." Architectural Record (October 1948): 91-101.
  • "Marcel Breuer Designs in Plywood." Upholstering (February 1947).
  • "Marcel Breuer: Bauhaus Tradition, Brutalist Invention" The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, v. 74, no. 1 (Summer, 2016)
  • "Marcel Breuer: da Bauhaus à Casa no Jardim." Pilotis (February 1950).
  • "Marcel Breuer: Teacher and Architect." House and Home (May 1952).
  • "Marcel Breuer's Own House." The Architectural Review (1949).
  • "Netherlands Department Store Rebuilds." Architectural Record (May 1955).
  • "Noi pietra, essi legno: La casa di Marcel Breuer nel Connecticut." Domus (1949): 2-7.
  • "Una Nueva Obra de Marcel Breuer." Nuestra Arquitectura 11 (November 1948). [Spanish]
  • "Oeuvres Récentes de Marcel Breuer, Architecte." L’architecture d'aujord’hui (July 1946): 3-26.
  • "On the Cover: The Geller House." Empire State Architect (July/August 1947).
  • "Sulla Media de Sogni di un Cittadino Americano." Domus (1949).
  • "Symmetrical Cantilevers on Asymmetrical Base." House and Home (January 1952): 119-124.
  • "Theater Arts Center: The Way to Solve a Complex Problem is to the Make it Simple." Architectural Forum (December 1952).
  • "Tomorrow's House Today." House and Garden (February 1947).
  • "The Tompkins House, Hewlett Harbor, Long Island." Architectural Record (September 1947).
  • "Two Modern Summer Cottages (Blueprints for Tomorrow)." House and Garden (ca. 1948): 62.
  • "Wohnhaus mit aufgehängtem Balkon." Bauen + Wohnen (1949). [German]

Journal issues devoted to Breuer[edit]

  • Bouwkundig Weekblad Architectura, no. 40, 5 (October 1929).
  • Cobouw, no.12 (22 March 1957).
  • Cobouw, no.13 (29 March 1957).
  • Nuestra Arquitectura 9 (September 1947).
  • Process: Architecture 32 (September 1982).

Selected writings by Breuer[edit]

  • published in Circle, 1936].
  • "On a Design of a Binuclear House." [typed manuscript of article published in California Arts and Architecture (Dec. 1943)]
  • "On Paul Klee." [typed manuscript]
  • "On Reorganization of the Bauhaus in 1923." [typed manuscript]
  • Preface to Living Architecture: Egyptian, ed. By Kenenth Martin LEake. New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1964.
  • "Stuyvesant Six: A Redevelopment Study." Pencil Points (June 1944).
  • "Tell Me, What is Modern Architecture?" House and Garden, April 1940.
  • "Wo stehen wir?" [lecture originally delivered in Zürich, 27 Apr 1934


  1. ^ Louie, Elaine (7 February 1991). "The Many Lives of a Very Common Chair". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 October 2017.
  2. ^ "Breuer, Marcel", World Encyclopedia, Philip's, 2004, doi:10.1093/acref/9780199546091.001.0001, ISBN 978-0-19-954609-1, retrieved 2021-07-06
  3. ^ "Marcel Breuer, Architect". Famous Architects. Retrieved 2021-07-06.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Marcel Breuer papers, 1920-1986: Biographical Note". Smithsonian Institution. Retrieved 1 September 2017.
  5. ^ Sennott, Stephen (2004). Encyclopedia of Twentieth Century Architecture. Taylor & Francis. p. 170. ISBN 978-1-57958-433-7.
  6. ^ "Marcel Breuer - Biography and Legacy". Retrieved 31 August 2020.
  7. ^ a b c Woodham, Jonathan M. (2005), "Breuer, Marcel", A Dictionary of Modern Design, Oxford University Press, doi:10.1093/acref/9780192800978.001.0001, ISBN 978-0-19-280097-8, retrieved 2021-07-06
  8. ^ Crump, James (2021-09-14). Breuer's Bohemia: The Architect, His Circle, and Midcentury Houses in New England. Penguin Random House. ISBN 978-1-58093-578-4.CS1 maint: date and year (link)
  9. ^ Woodham, Jonathan M. (2005), "Breuer, Marcel", A Dictionary of Modern Design, Oxford University Press, doi:10.1093/acref/9780192800978.001.0001, ISBN 978-0-19-280097-8, retrieved 2021-07-06
  10. ^ Architect Marcel Breuer
  11. ^ a b c Books, Market House Books Market House (2003-01-01), Books, Market House (ed.), "Breuer, Marcel Lajos", Who's Who in the Twentieth Century, Oxford University Press, doi:10.1093/acref/9780192800916.001.0001, ISBN 978-0-19-280091-6, retrieved 2021-07-06
  12. ^ a b Goldberger, Paul (July 2, 1981). "Marcel Breuer, 79, Dies". New York Times.
  13. ^ Connelly, "As Suburbs Reach Limit, People Are Moving Back to the Cities", Seattle Post-Intelligencer, February 4, 2010.
  14. ^ Donovan, "Prepared Remarks for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Shaun Donovan at the HUD Summer Intern Event", June 24, 2009.
  15. ^ Davis, Remaking Cities: Proceedings of the 1988 International Conference in Pittsburgh, 1989, p. 12.
  16. ^ "Marcel Breuer: the Bauhaus furniture master with a passion for architecture". Dezeen. 2018-11-27. Retrieved 2021-07-06.
  17. ^ Hyman, Isabelle. Marcel Breuer, Architect: The Career and the Buildings. New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 2001.
  18. ^ "Marcel Breuer - Rare armchair, model no. B55, 1928-1929". Phillips. Retrieved 1 July 2020.
  19. ^ "Chamberlain Cottage". Great Buildings. Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  20. ^ Marcel Breuer: Design and Architecture (November 3, 2007 - February 17, 2008) Archived July 12, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  21. ^ Breuer's Bohemia (2021) directed by James Crump on IMDb
  22. ^ Breuer's Bohemia by James Crump (New York: The Monacelli Press/Penguin Random House, 2021)
  23. ^ Breuer's Bohemia by James Crump (New York: The Monacelli Press/Penguin Random House, 2021)

External links[edit]

From the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution: