Inside Iconic Houses Tours are back! Isokon Building 18 November

Inside Iconic Houses - Live Online Tour Program

Pioneers of the Dutch Modern House

Portraits of the Architect - Interview with Gennaro Postiglione

Test Labs for New Ideas - Interview with Natascha Drabbe

New Chairman Architect Nanne de Ru on The Perfect Platform

Health and Home - Interview with Beatriz Colomina

A Life Less Ordinary – Interview with Valentijn Carbo

Invisible Women - Interview with Alice T. Friedman

Winy Maas on the Green Dip

Anita Blom on Experimental Housing of the 1970s

Women’s Worlds - Interview with Natalie Dubois

The Culture of Living - Interview with Robert von der Nahmer

Hetty Berens: A Fresh Take on Modernism

Niek Smit on Supporting Modern Heritage

Alice Roegholt on Amsterdam’s Working-Class Palaces

July is Iconic Houses Month

Save Maison Zilveli - Sign the Petition!

How a Building Tells a Story - Recorded Event

Toolkit for Owners of a Modern House

13 Aalto Sites Nominated for UNESCO World Heritage

Villa Beer At Risk - Sign the Petition!

Business Cards of Stone, Timber and Concrete in the Brussels Region 1830-1970

Exhibiting & Visiting Modernist Monuments

Fostering Well-Researched Responsible Design


Enjoy a virtual visit to the California House and a Q&A with architect Peter Gluck

Exhibition 'Modernism and Refuge'

A Hidden Gem of Postmodernism

New Centre for Historic Houses of India

An Online Chronicle of the Douglas House

SPECIAL – Northern (High)Lights!

SPECIAL - Casas Icónicas en España!

SPECIAL - Vacances en France!

SPECIAL – Iconic Dreams - Sleep in an Iconic House!

SPECIAL – Dutch Delights!

SPECIAL – German Greats!

Villa Henny, geometric style icon in The Netherlands

A Mendini temple in Amsterdam

IH-lectures USA & Canada Feb 2020 on Melnikov House

An Afternoon with the Glucks

Danish Moderns – Looking Back at Our Mini-Seminar

Venturo house complements Exhibition Centre WeeGee’s offering

Lecture report: Remembering Richard Neutra

Hôtel Mezzara and the Guimard Museum project

We welcome 13 new members!

BREAKING NEWS: 8 Wright Sites Inscribed on Unesco World Heritage List!

LECTURE 29 August - Raymond Neutra: My Father and Frank Lloyd Wright

Iconic Reads

SPECIAL – Iconic Artist Residencies

Our Badge of Honour

SPECIAL – Women & Iconic Houses

SPECIAL – Iconic Housing

Iconic Houses End Year Message

City-ordered rebuild of landmark house stirs debate: Appropriate or overreach?

Kohlberg House Restoration in Progress

Planned Demolition of Rietveld Homes in Reeuwijk

Renovation Gili House in Crisis

An Iconic Saga

Restoring Eileen Gray’s Villa E-1027 and Clarifying the Controversies

Modernism on the East Coast

Iconic Houses in Latin America

House Tours May 2018 

Expert Meetings

Terence Riley -KEYNOTE SPEAKER- on Philip Johnson

New era for Villa E-1027 and Cap Moderne

Jorge Liernur -KEYNOTE SPEAKER- on Latin American Modernism(s)

Restoring the past: The Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo Home Studio

Behind the Scenes: Hendrick de Keyser Association

Latin America Special – Focus on Mexico

De Stijl in Drachten

Preserving the Nancarrow House-Studio

Meet the Friends - Nanne de Ru

Latin America Special – Focus on Brazil

Jan de Jong’s House is Latest Hendrick de Keyser Acquisition

Stay in a Belgian Modernist Masterpiece

In Berlin’s Modernist Network

Rietveld-Schröder House Celebrates De Stijl Anniversary

Meet Our New Foundation Board Members

Virtual Tour of a Papaverhof Home in 3D

Getty Grant for Villa E-1027

Iconic Dacha

11 Le Corbusier Homes now on Unesco World Heritage List

At home with Le Corbusier

Wright Plus 2016 Walk

Speaking Volumes: Building the Iconic Houses Library

Follow us!

Documentary La Ricarda

Rent a house designed by Gerrit Rietveld

Barragán House on Screen

Gesamtkunstwerk – An Icon on the Move

Triennale der Moderne 27 September - 13 October 2013

Prestigious Art Nouveau mansions in Brussels open

September 14 + 15: Heritage Days in Paris

June's New Arrivals: Museum Apartments

Iconic Houses is now on Twitter and Facebook

Corbu’s Cabanon: Reconstruction and Lecture

Projekt Mies In Krefeld: Life-sized model of the Krefeld Clubhouse

New arrivals: Spain special

MAMO: Le Corbu’s ‘Park in the Sky’ open 12 June

Annual Wright Architectural Housewalk: 18 May

Frank Lloyd Wright Homes on Screen

Message from the Editor

Neutra’s House on Screen

Melnikov House on Screen

Iconic Houses in the media

Message from the Editor

Eileen Gray House on Screen

Copy Culture

At Home in the 20th Century

New 20th century Iconic Houses website launches

May 2013

Iveta Černá, Villa Tugendhat

Iveta Černá is Director of Villa Tugendhat, which has been under the administration of the Museum of the City of Brno since 2002.
Villa Tugendhat is Europe’s most important and most authentic building by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. In 2001, the building was added to the Unesco World Heritage List. Černá is also member of the Organizing Committee of the Iconic Houses Network and speaker at the symposium at the Iconic Houses Europe Symposium at the Victoria & Albert Museum 12 November 2013.

Tell us a bit about yourself
I’m an architectural historian. I studied architecture at the Brno University of Technology and art history at Masaryk University in Brno. My interests include the preservation of 20th-century architecture, with a particular focus on technical questions. I am one of the founding members of Docomomo in the Czech Republic and a member of the International Specialist Committee on Technology of Docomomo International, Icomos, DEMHIST and Icom. I regularly publish articles and books and give lectures at international conferences. I’ve also taught at the Faculty of Architecture and the Faculty of Arts in Brno.

What makes an iconic house, as far as you’re concerned?
I’ve been focusing on modern houses ever since my studies. My fascination is for space and its arrangement, together with innovative technologies. When an architect perfectly combines the interior and exterior parts of a house, which spill over into each other, as is the case with Villa Tugendhat, the result is a work of art as well as architecture. I like the unity of form and content - houses whose facades already indicate their internal disposition and function. Finally, I really appreciate ‘smart’ houses, those that are perfectly thought out from their cardinal points orientation to their door handles. Houses that perfectly complement and respect the environment in which they stand are a real treat.

What’s your favourite house?
I should, and will, answer Villa Tugendhat, because that house is literally my second child. However, I have a number of favourites. I admire the human scale and organic materials of Nordic architecture, the experimental expressionism of Bauhaus architecture, and the subtle airiness of Brazilian structures. I like ‘model colonies’ demonstrating the work of important architects in one place, but also solitary homes that exude a meditative atmosphere. I am currently dazzled by mid-century architecture in the Americas, built mainly by European architects forced to emigrate during World War II.

What’s your biggest challenge right now?
Last year’s London exhibition and conference on Villa Tugendhat had the theme, ‘many lives in Villa Tugendhat’. It reflected the fact that the original owners, Greta and Fritz Tugendhat, lived in the house for only eight years before they were forced to flee from Hitler. The war and then the post-war years, which saw the advent of the communist regime, brought with them many new functional uses, from a dance school to a rehabilitation centre for children to a government villa. The house was opened to the public only in 1994. Between 2010 and 2012 it was restored for the first time in its existence, using rigorous building and restoration procedures, and then reopened to the public. So the last three years have been crucial. It has not been an easy task to reconcile the authenticity of the house with a scientific building rehabilitation and the creation of attractive routes for visitors and a study and documentation centre. The fact that our efforts are highly appreciated by domestic and foreign experts is a hugely satisfying.

What’s next?
The house serves as a monument of modern architecture, and it has a rich story. We want to prioritise the wishes of visitors who would like a glimpse of the time when the Tugendhat family lived here. They will see not only luxurious materials like the onyx wall, exotic veneers from Asia, retractable large windows and the iconic chairs Brno, Barcelona, Tugendhat or Stuttgart, but also the sophisticated air-conditioning system, the boiler room and a fur-coat safe. The house also offers concerts of classical music, screenings of historical films, lecture series with leading experts, workshops and conferences. The interest in all activities is extraordinary, exceeding our spatial possibilities.
‘Solidarity’ with other iconic buildings offers countless other possibilities. Not only the exchange of experience, but especially common projects that will emphasise the uniqueness of these solitaires in a map of architectural gems.

Which 21st century house is an Iconic House of the future?
Personally, I am attracted to architectural designs by Zaha Hadid, Santiago Calatrava, Alvaro Siza, Renzo Piano, Herzog and De Meuron as well as Jan Kaplický. They are icons even at the moment of their creation. Just like Villa Tugendhat...

House in Wales by Jan Kaplický of Future Systems (1996)

Read more about Villa Tugendhat in our Specials section.