Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Located opposite Mies van der Rohe’s Seagram Building Lever House’s tower and podium is as copied and rarely equaled as the Seagram building. Together these two towers define 20th century skyscraper architecture.
The single-storey mezzanine base is supported by columns creating a public pedestrian area beneath. The tower sits on top of the podium with the lowest floor of the tower recessed to reinforce the seperation between the two elements. The opaque glazing of the top three floors conceals the machinery and reflects earlier skyscraper design by creating a capital at the top of the building and balancing the geometry of the base.
At only 24 stories the building is dwarfed by the surrounding towers but it’s diminuitive scale does not diminish the impact of it’s high quality and elegant design. Lever House was one of the first SOM buildings that brought the firm to prominence.