Fonds 57 - Arthur Erickson fonds

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Arthur Erickson fonds

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Fonds

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CA CAC 57

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  • between approximately 1946 and 1987 (Creation)
    Creator
    Erickson, Arthur, 1924-2009

Physical description area

Physical description

1485 architectural drawings
102 photographs
26 slides
4 models
52 bound volumes
cm of textual records

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Archival description area

Name of creator

(1924-2009)

Biographical history

Arthur Charles Erickson (b. 1924), is a native of Vancouver, BC, who studied architecture at McGill University (B.Arch 1950). Erickson's training at McGill primed him in the architectural principles set forth by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer and Le Corbusier. Erickson formulated his own personal architectural aesthetic which proceeded from the influence of the Moderns as well as from extensive travel in Europe and the Far East. He formed a partnership with Geoffrey Massey in 1963 and, with him, built Simon Fraser University in Vancouver (1969). In 1972 the firm of Arthur Erickson Architects was formed; the firm has executed such major commissions as the Museum of Anthropology (1974-6) and the Provincial Government offices (1974-9), both in Vancouver. The firm's most recent major undertaking was the design of the New Canadian Chancery in Washington (completed in 1990). The material in the CAC archive documents Erickson's decade-long involvement with building projects in the Middle East. Erickson's concern for bold masses, indigenous forms and contextuality is evident in designs for the Islamic University of Madinah in Saudi Arabia (1983) and the Abu Nuwas Conservation and Development Project in Baghdad, Iraq (1981). More than mere buildings these designs are better understood as small-scale cities. Although many of these projects were never executed, they all reflect Erickson's humanist approach to the problems of Modern design.

Arthur Charles Erickson, né en 1924 à Vancouver (Colombie-Britannique), a étudié l'architecture à l'Université McGill. La formation que Erickson a reçue à McGill l'a initié aux principes architecturaux mis de l'avant par Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer et Le Corbusier. Erickson a formulé sa propre esthétique architecturale sous l'influence des grands du modernisme de même qu'à l'issue de nombreux voyages en Europe et en Extrême-Orient. Il s'est associé à Geoffrey Massey en 1963 et a construit avec lui l'Université Simon Fraser de Vancouver (1969). En 1972, le cabinet d'Arthur Erickson Architects a été formé et a exécuté des commandes importantes comme le musée d'Anthropologie (1974-1976) et les bureaux du gouvernement provincial à Vancouver (1974-1979). Le projet le plus récent du cabinet a été la nouvelle chancellerie canadienne à Washington (terminée en 1990). Le matériel du fonds documente les multiples projets réalisés par Erickson au Moyen-Orient au cours des dix dernières années. Sa préoccupation pour les masses audacieuses, les formes indigènes et la contextualité est manifeste dans ses plans pour l'Université islamique de Madinah en Arabie Saoudite (1983) et dans ceux du Projet de conservation et de développement Abu Nuwas à Bagdad (Iraq) (1981). Plus que des immeubles, ces réalisations sont des villes miniatures. Même si bon nombre des projets d'Erickson n'ont jamais été réalisés, tous témoignent de son approche humaniste aux problèmes de l'architecture moderne.

Pour plus de renseignements, voir la publication de la CAC intitulée Arthur Erickson: The Middle East Projects, A Guide to the Archives - les projets du Moyen-Orient, guide du fonds, Montréal : Collection d'architecture canadienne, Bibliothèque Blackader-Lauterman d'architecture et d'art, Université McGill, 1999.

Custodial history

Material from Erickson's Middle East projects was given to the CAC in 1989 by Arthur Erickson Architects.

Le matériel se rapportant aux projets moyen-orientaux d'Erickson a été remis à la CAC en 1989 par le cabinet Arthur Erickson Architects.

Scope and content

The fonds consists chiefly of architectural drawings, photographs, reports, and other records relating to Erickson's architectural projects in the Middle East. Beginning in 1975, Erickson undertook some forty projects in the Middle East, most of them large-scale public projects. He created masterplans and designed universities, museums, office buildings, residential complexes and diplomatic compounds in the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Syria, among others. Some were built, others remained at a competition and project stage. Architectural drawings from Erickson's work as a professional architect date from 1976 to 1986 and include 1,468 multimedia drawings. In these are found drawings for over a dozen Middle East competitions and projects such as designs for the Islamic University of Madinah, Saudi Arabia (1983), King Faisal Air Force Academy and Mosque in Al Kharj (1980) and the Etisalat Headquarters in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (1986). An additional seventeen drawings were created before 1950 and include nine drawings for an office building and eight drawings for an arts centre for Vancouver. These executed while a student at the McGill School of Architecture. The fonds also contains 102 photographs and 26 slides also dating between 1976 and 1986 as well as 4 three-dimensional scale models. These models are for the Islamic University of Madinah (1983), the Abu Nuwas Conservation and Development Project (1976), Sancst Science Halls (1981) and Etisalat Headquarters (1986). The fonds also contain competition submissions and project development documentation (1976-1987), bound in 43 volumes. Nine copies of three published books also included contain surveys of Erickson's work and career. The fonds also contains Erickson's correspondence and other papers.

"Dessins architecturaux, 1976-1986, 1468 dessins multimédias." Comprend notamment des dessins de plus d'une douzaine de concours et de projets moyen-orientaux comme le plan de l'Université islamique de Madinah, Arabie Saoudite (1983), l'Académie de l'armée de l'air du Roi Faiçal et la mosquée d'Al Kharj (1980) ainsi que les quartiers généraux d'Etisalat à Abu Dhabi, Émirats arabes unis (1986).
"Photographies, 1976-1986, 102 photographies et 26 diapositives."
"Objets tridimensionnels, 1976-1986, 4 articles." Quatre projets sont documentés par des maquettes tridimensionnelles : l'Université islamique de Madinah (1983), le Projet de conservation et de développement dAbu Nuwas (1976), les Sancst Science Halls (1981) et les quartiers généraux d'Etisalat (1986).
"Publications professionnelles, 1976-1987, 43 volumes reliés." Notamment des soumissions à des concours et de la documentation portant sur divers projets.
"Documents biographiques, 1975-1986, 9 copies de 3 ouvrages publiés." Ces volumes contiennent des études du travail d'Erickson.
"Correspondance et autres documents." En cours de dépouillement.

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  • English

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Finding aids

For further information see the CAC's publication, Arthur Erickson: The Middle East Projects, A Guide to the Archives - les projets du Moyen-Orient, guide du fonds. Montreal: Canadian Architecture Collection, Blackader-Lauterman Library of Architecture and Art, McGill University, 1999.

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Correspondence and other papers require additional processing and description.

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CAC Database ID

71

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