Behind the Veils of Modern Tropical Architecture





Modern Movement, Modern architecture, Modern housing


While orthodoxy was consolidating its hold on modern architecture in the 1930s, fresh new ideas from the periphery began to widen and question its limiting vocabulary. This study looks at projects emerging before the end of that decade that paralleled the much publicized work of Le Corbusier and Brazilian innovators in developing ideas for taming the sun in warm climates. The story focuses on a forgotten speech given in Rangoon which enthused about a soon to be forgotten but effective method of solar control and triggered a yearning for architecture widening its scope to engage with attributes of national identity.

How to Cite

Guedes, P. (2021). Behind the Veils of Modern Tropical Architecture. Docomomo Journal, (63), 6–17.




Author Biography

Pedro Guedes, University of Queensland

Dr Pedro D'Alpoim Guedes's career has covered research, teaching and architectural practice as well as cross-disciplinary collaborations with designers in other fields. His PhD explored invention and innovation in the introduction of iron in buildings of the nineteenth century. Part of this work focused on colonial enterprise and the establishment of worldwide networks for the exploitation of resources and trade.


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