Cork Flooring And Mies van der Rohe

01/11/2012

The McCormick House built in 1952 by Mies van der Rohe was to be built as an affordable home that would have concrete floors covered with cork. This significant work by Mies van der Rohe was moved to the Elmhurst Art Museum in 1994.

The move was yet another chapter in the history of the McCormick House, designed by a world famous architect, built of brick, glass and steel, completed in 1952, and meant to be studied as a prototype for a group of row houses planned for Melrose Park. Robert McCormick had worked before with Mies, joining as land developer and architect to create the glass and steel towers at 860 and 880 Lake Shore Drive. Mr. McCormick is reported to have said that he would like a one-story horizontal slice of one of the towers to form the design for the prototype, which, when constructed, would also serve as a weekend and summer home for the McCormick family.

This house, however, was to be different. A simple, straightforward design would prevail, but it would be made “affordable” with the row houses in mind. Stock millwork was used for the moveable partitions, and single pane glass for the windows. The floors were to be concrete, covered with cork; the kitchen, a simple gallery plan, and there would be no air conditioning. The landscaping was planned by Alfred Caldwell, one of Mies’ colleagues at Illinois Institute of Technology, and planted by his students. Read More

Via Elmhurst Art Museum

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