Minoru Yamasaki’s Twin Towers
After 9/11 and their destruction twin towers were said to be the symbols of strength. What many people don’t know is that the architect behind that was Minoru Yamasaki, a Japanese architect. In this article, Enrico Conti will talk about the history of the twin towers, along with its fascinating facts.
We all are aware of the incident that happened on 9/11 that struck the whole world, with the world trade center being attacked by the terrorist group, taking the lives of hundreds of civilians and marking its detrimental demolition on families. Now twin towers are celebrated as the symbol of unity and strength. But things were not always like what we see now.
Yamasaki and the twin towers were racially criticized upon their completion. Whilst such a project could build an immense career for a privileged person, it was racism, stereotypes, and conservative thinking that utterly destroyed the masterpiece Yamaski fabricated. It was undermined, even by the creator himself. His confidence was beaten by society. That event eventually disrupted Yamasaki’s career.
About Minoru Yamasaki
Minoru Yamasaki was born on December 1, 1912 in Seattle, Washington. He graduated from the University of Washington. Post graduation in 1934, he went to New York City, where he enjoyed a little success and held several designated positions. In 1943-45 at Columbia University, he was an instructor in architectural design. Afterwards, in 1945, Yamasaki moved to Detroit and became chief designer for the firm of Smith and Grylls. On February 6th, in the year 1986, Minoru Yamasaki lost his battle to cancer.
Before Minoru Yamasaki was given the commission to design the World Trade Center, he was running a firm for over a decade. He was 50 years old at that time when he was assigned the project of twin towers. Minoru Yamasaki achieved fame within the architect industry for his work on the striking concrete vaults of the Lambert-St. Louis airport in 1956 and the modernist Pruitt-Igoe public housing project also in 1956 in the same city. But before he was awarded the project of the twin towers, he never worked on any skyscraper, or designed any building higher than 20 stories. Before the completion of towers, Pruitt- Igoe was demolished, and later on, the twin towers followed in its footsteps. Both of Yamasaki’s major buildings were dismantled, one by terrorists and the other by politics.
Minoru Yamasaki: Humanist Architect for a Modernist world
In 2017 architectural historian Dale Allen Gyure became the first person to study Minoru Yamasaki full life. One of the first people to cope with the bias Yamasaki faced throughout his career. Yamasaki was known as one of the best and most prominent architects of the 20th century. Dale Allen openly talked about all the criticism and racial abuse that Minoru Yamasaki got from his appearance and race. He also criticised how biased everyone was when he first got the contract for the twin towers.
Minoru Yamasaki was one of the best and most bulging architects of the 20th century. He fabricated a building that symbolizes strength and unity. In the year 1960, he was elected as a fellow of the American Institute of Architects in 1960. Despite all the racism and criticism he faced, Yamasaki never let that affect his work. His masterpieces will always be remembered, along with his reverberating fight as a person of color in our cosmopolitan society.