"The thing I love about this period is that it was the last frontier of beauty prior to the worst years of Human History that followed. From 1914-1945 Mankind suffered through two world wars, a depression and untold suffering and death. This period was the last true "Age of Innocence".Well, maybe for a certain portion of the world. It was of course also during this time that some of the last, worst excesses of colonialism were playing out in Africa and the Pacific. The European governments' fundamental conservatism, utter belief in their own superiority and even infallibility at the time, in combination with the leaps in military technology which made World War I the horror that it was were all nascent at this time, as well.Certainly the comprehensive disaster that was the First World War and its aftermath substantially and irreversibly soured the optimistic outlook of every person living through that War. But I think it also ironically changed the nature of art and architecture to a forward-looking philosophy, instead of one that was at heart reactionary.It is this early, naive optimism and purity of form and intent that has always drawn me to the first true and complete Moderns, such as Le Corbusier, Mies Van der Rohe, the de Stijl artists and architects. It has recently become eminently clear that their architecture and urban planning - when universally practiced - is dreadfully antihuman. But the beauty that this group was able to produce (in an isolated context) is just as undeniable to me.mglf
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