"Less is more." -- Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe
Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe was one of the most influential architects of the Twentieth Century. Mies was born in Germany on March 27, 1886. His simple designs avoided ornamentation using glass, marble, exposed steel, and stone. They came to be copied widely as typical of modern design. As a young man, Mies worked in his father's stone carving shop before moving to Berlin to establish his own office before World War I. After the Nazi government took power in 1933, Mies had little work to do in a country where everything including architecture was supposed to serve the state.
In 1937 as Germany prepared for war, Mies left his homeland and moved to Chicago to head the architecture school at the Armour Institute of Technology. In 1940, the Armour Institute merged with the Lewis Institute to form what is now called the Illinois Institute of Technology. Over the next decade Mies designed and supervised the construction of about 20 buildings on the IIT campus in the Bronzeville neighborhood on the South Side.