Modern Modules

Generous funding from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Henry Luce Foundation allowed us to launch a series of public events and roundtable discussions around Modernism + Recent Past. These regional Modules are helping us reframe public perceptions about modern and recent past resources, monitor the needs on the ground, and create a network that can advance regional efforts while contributing to a national dialogue.

The first two Modules were held in Minnesota's Twin Cities and Los Angeles and were planned in close coordination with our outstanding local partners, including the Los Angeles Conservancy, the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota, Preserve Minneapolis, DOCOMOMO MN, and the Minnesota Historical Society. Each Module provided its host community with a forum to discuss the unique resources in their region and build momentum for saving them.

The template for the Modules consists of a panel discussion open to the public (featuring local architects, historians, scholars, and practitioners), followed by a roundtable geared towards preservationists, real estate professionals, architects, and civic leaders. The Los Angeles Module also provided the opportunity to capture reflections on Modernism and the city's architecture from a variety of the 200 people in attendance, including the son of architect Richard Neutra and internationally acclaimed author and amateur architect Ray Bradbury.

Both events received local media attention, including an article in the Los Angeles Times and a story broadcast on Minnesota Public Radio. We are also working with filmmakers, historians, and photographers to complete a series of short film documentaries and accompanying booklets highlighting specific issues in preservation, which will feature some of the Module's participants. The Modules proved an engaging way to mobilize support for this issue, and we'll continue to stay involved as local participants work together to develop action plans. New Mods are scheduled for Boston June 29 and 30, and in Aspen July 28-29.