PBS will air a special next year entitled “10 Buildings that Changed America.” The program does not claim to be a definitive listing of the “best” or “most iconic” examples of American architecture; instead, will attempt to profile residential, commercial and manufacturing projects that were so groundbreaking and radical that they significantly impacted subsequent projects and architects.
Robie House in Chicago by Frank Lloyd Wright, 1910
Of course, these top 10’s, countdowns, and best of’s are designed to incite debate and get people talking by mixing unexpected choices in with the no-brainers. (Just take a look at Rolling Stone’s Top 500 Songs of All Time if you don’t believe me.) The architecture community will certainly have something to say about the validity’s of PBS’ choices. But regardless, a program of this magnitude will broaden the conversation about American architecture and undoubtedly expose a wide audience to potentially unfamiliar names, and that’s a good thing.
The Seagram Building in New York, designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, 1958
So take a look at the PBS list of buildings that changed America and let us know what you think. Watch a preview video HERE. Which building triggered your initial interest in architecture?
Let the debate begin.
- Virginia State Capitol, Richmond, VA
- Trinity Church, Boston, MA
- Wainwright Building, St. Louis, MO
- Robie House, Chicago, IL
- Highland Park Ford Plant, Highland Park, MI
- Southdale Center Mall, Edina, MN
- Seagram Building, New York, NY
- Dulles International Airport, Chantilly, VA
- Vanna Venturi House, Chestnut Hill, PA
- Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles, CA