Karl Friedrich Schinkel

1781 (Neuruppin, Prussia, now Germany) – 1841 (Berlin)

Schinkel’s plain understatement and sense of proportion make him a vital precursor to modernist architecture. He was taught by Friedrich Gilly’s father David, lived in their house, and became great friends with Friedrich (his real mentor) and other young architects, including Langhans; he also completed some of Friedrich Gilly’s projects following his early death. Staying in Rome after studying, he befriended Wilhelm von Humboldt and Koch, later remodelling Schloss Tegel for Humboldt. Humboldt’s brother Alexander, Fichte, the Arnims and Brentano were friends and associates in Berlin during the ‘golden age’ of Prussian culture, to which he contributed so substantially.

Claude Parent

1923 (Neuilly, France) – 2016 (Neuilly)

Parent worked briefly for Le Corbusier. Virilio and he collaborated both as architects and theorists, developing ideas about ‘the oblique’, inspired partly by children playing on abandoned wartime bunkers; Nouvel worked with them as a young architect before establishing his own practice. Parent collaborated with Tinguely and Klein, helping Klein develop designs for fountains of fire and water, and a ceiling of air.


Constant Nieuwenhuys

1920 (Amsterdam) – 2005 (Amsterdam)

Constant and Jorn originally met at a Miró exhibition in Paris. In 1948 he also met Appel, Noiret and Dotremont, and collectively (including Jorn, and the painter Corneille) they founded CoBrA. He shared a Paris apartment with Appel. He corresponded regularly with Debord on Situationist matters, collaborated on an exhibition project with Rietveld, and got involved with Lefebvre, whose ‘Critique of Everyday Life’ had been an inspiration for CoBrA.