Community classes on mid-century modernism from Memphis Heritage

By Mesha Crump

Memphis Heritage is set to host its annual Preservation Series spotlighting mid-century modernism. This educational series begins March 7 at the Memphis Heritage office located at 2282 Madison Ave. in Midtown and concludes April 2 with a guided tour of the Memphis College of Art.
Highlighting an architectural era rich in utility and aesthetics, the Preservation Series will explore local mid-century modern architecture while educating guests on the impact of the movement. Some of the aspects to be emphasized throughout the series include International Style’s three principals; furniture and decorative arts; and Memphis’ commercial and residential architecture.

The 2011 Preservation Series program schedule is as follows:
Monday, March 7, 7-8:30pm – Introduction to modernism by architectural historian Judith Johnson at Memphis Heritage.
Monday, March 14, 7-8:30pm – Exclusive tour of a home designed by renowned architect Faye Jones, led by interior designer Michael Carradine. Location available to series attendees only.
Monday, March 21, 7-8:30pm – Exploration of the role of neon signage in Memphis architecture, led by Chris Balton and staff at Memphis Heritage.
Monday, March 28, 7-8:30pm – Discussion on mid-century modernism in Memphis commercial and residential real estate, led by architects Keith Kays, AIA, and Marty Gorman, AIA at Memphis Heritage.
Saturday, April 2, time to be announced – Guided tour of the Memphis College of Art and viewing of Visual Acoustics: The Modernism of Julius Shulman, led by Jim Ramsey, associate professor of liberal studies at Memphis College of Art, located at 1930 Poplar Ave. in Overton Park.

Funded by donations, the Preservation Series is designed to educate the community on the importance of sustained and era-specific architecture, as well as to assist in furthering Memphis Heritage’s mission.
“With the Preservation Series, Memphis Heritage is able to prove a direct correlation to an important era in architecture and Memphis that reiterates the impact of historic preservation,” said June West, executive director of Memphis Heritage Inc. “This year’s event will showcase and discuss the youngest architectural era, mid-century modernism, and its role in the grander scheme of Memphis architectural significance.”
The series will be led by renowned members of The American Institute of Architects (AIA) as well as noted modernist professionals. Tickets for the five-part series are $50 for members and $60 for non-members and can be purchased online at memphisheritage.org. Individual session tickets will not be available for purchase.

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