Buy Your Early Bird Ticket Now for Pioneers of the Dutch Modern House
Health and Home - Interview with Beatriz Colomina
A Life Less Ordinary – Interview with Valentijn Carbo
Invisible Women - Interview with Alice T. Friedman
Portraits of the Architect - Interview with Gennaro Postiglione
Anita Blom on Experimental Housing of the 1970s
Test Labs for New Ideas - Interview with Natascha Drabbe
Women’s Worlds - Interview with Natalie Dubois
Winy Maas on the Green Dip
Hetty Berens: A Fresh Take on Modernism
The Culture of Living - Interview with Robert von der Nahmer
New Program - Inside Iconic Houses!
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
ICONS AT RISK
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
SPECIAL – Iconic Artist Residencies
Our Badge of Honour
SPECIAL – Women & Iconic Houses
SPECIAL – Iconic Housing
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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
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
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
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
At Home in the 20th Century
New 20th century Iconic Houses website launches
Hetty Berens: A Fresh Take on Modernism
In the run-up to Pioneers of the Dutch Modern House, our Iconic Houses online event in September, we talk to leading authorities on architecture in the Netherlands about the Dutch reinvention of the house in the 20th century. Hetty Berens, an architectural historian and curator, is responsible for the Sonneveld House in Rotterdam, which has been restored to its original 1930s glory. She is the Co-Chair of the 2021 online conference Pioneers of the Dutch Modern House. In her video at this Iconic Houses event in September, she'll talk about how improved hygiene made healthier homes in The Netherlands. In this interview she'll talk about the importance of getting beyond Modernist clichés.
Why do we need a fresh take on Modernism?
So that people can be aware of how things connect. Modernist houses are embedded in longer traditions. In the case of the Sonneveld House, the architect was starting from a quite traditional floorplan, and mixing in elements of Art Deco and De Stijl.
How does the Sonneveld House fit into the bigger picture?
If you look at the books covering this period, you won’t find this house – instead, you’ll find the example of the Van Nelle Factory which is strongly related to it, along with two other houses that are private. Out of these four buildings forming an ensemble, the Sonneveld House is the only one you can visit.
What do you most want visitors to notice about the house?
That the architecture, interior and family are three parts of a single whole. All three are important in telling the story of the house – and we are lucky enough to have a complete archive for them all. That’s quite unique. I’ve noticed that many house museums don’t show their sources – yet they bring history to life.
Do you have tips for other houses on storytelling through archives?
You can communicate about a house through both local sources and national archives. Look at a broad range of traditional and non-traditional sources to bring the story to life. For example, we have a Moroccan carpet in the house, and the Sonnevelds actually visited Morocco to see the factory. Through this story, I want to connect with Moroccan designers and the Moroccan community in Rotterdam – a potential new audience.
In Rotterdam there is lots of young heritage. How do you think it will fare?
Well, we have the RCE (Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands) and they are taking the first steps in researching and documenting it. It’s not only about ‘iconic’ in terms of appearance, but also in terms of original thinking. For example, in the 1970s, Organic Architecture had a strong emphasis on sustainability – something that’s vitally important today.
Do you have a favourite example of Organic Architecture?
I love Private House de Waal in Rijnsweerd (Utrecht, 1978-1980), by Ton Alberts and also the Kristalwoningen in Zeist (1984), by Henk Hupkes. The latter is under threat of demolition, but there is already a nice grassroots campaign by residents to save it.
What would you like the next move to be in young Dutch heritage?
I would like there to be an overview of post-war Dutch housing, to see which houses are open to public and whether there are gaps. And then see what can be done to fill those gaps. Diversity matters – the Sonneveld is a beautiful example of Modernism, but I’d love to there to be an Organic house museum too.
|Private house de Waal, Rijnsweerd, Utrecht, The Netherlands. Architect: Ton Alberts, 1980.|
|Photo in background montage top of page: Sonneveld House, Brinkman and Van der Vlugt, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, 1933. Photo Els Zweerink.|
Updated 22 March 2021