Oscar Stonorov

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Oscar Gregory Stonorov (December 2, 1905 – May 9, 1970), was a modernist architect and architectural writer, historian and archivist who emigrated to the United States from Germany in 1929.[1] His first name is often spelled "Oskar".

Early life

Stonorov was born in Frankfurt, Germany, and studied at the University of Florence (1924/25), Italy and at the University of Zurich (1925–1928), Switzerland, and apprenticed with French sculptor Aristide Maillol. In 1928, he worked in the offices of André Lurçat in Paris, France.[citation needed]


In 1940 Stonorov, along with George Howe, worked on the design of housing developments in Pennsylvania with Louis Kahn. A formal architectural office partnership between Stonorov and Louis Kahn began in February 1942 and ended in March 1947, produced fifty-four known projects and structures.[2] [3] In 1943, Stonorov co-wrote with Kahn Why City Planning Is Your Responsibility and in 1944 again collaborated with Kahn to write You and Your Neighborhood ... A Primer for Neighborhood Planning.[4][5] Between 1950 and 1954 Philadelphia architect and future Pritzker Prize winner Robert Venturi (who later worked directly for Kahn) worked in the offices of Stonorov.[6][7] In 1957 he established the partnership of Stonorov & Haws.[citation needed]

Stonorov lived and worked near Philadelphia, where he designed modernist public housing, such as the Carl Mackley Houses, which was added to the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places in 1982[8] and the National Park Service's National Register of Historic Places in 1998.[9] Because Stonorov was not registered as an architect in the United States at the time, William Pope Barney was enlisted as chief architect for the purposes of obtaining permits from the city.[10]

Stonorov dedicated a significant amount of his life to researching and compiling the archives of Swiss architect Le Corbusier and co-edited, with Willy Boesiger and Max Bill, the Œuvre complète: Le Corbusier et Pierre Jeanneret, the definitive 8 volume set of the complete work of Swiss architect Le Corbusier initially released between 1929 ands 1969 as a result of Stonorov and Boesiger working directly with Le Corbusier.[11][12]


Avon Lea Farm, designed by Stonorov around an old stone farmhouse

Stonorov died with Walter P. Reuther, president of the United Automobile Workers, when Reuther's Gates Learjet 23 crashed on approach to Emmet County Airport (now Pellston Regional Airport) in Pellston, Michigan. Also killed were Reuther's wife, his bodyguard, and the plane's pilot and copilot.[13] Reuther and Stonorov were to have performed the final inspection of a union recreation and education facility Stonorov had designed at Black Lake, Michigan 25 miles (40 km) from Pellston.[14] The center was to open three weeks after the crash.[citation needed]


With his wife, Elizabeth Foster "Miss Betty" Stonorov (March 5, 1906 - December 8, 2003), Stonorov had daughters Katrina Daly, Tasha Stonorov Churchill and Andrea Stonorov Foster as well as a son Derek Stonorov and nine grandchildren.[15] They lived at Avon Lea Farm in Charlestown Township, outside Philadelphia.[citation needed]

Timeline of works

File:Cherokee Village apts.JPG
Cherokee Apartments
File:Adam Eve Storonov.JPG
Sculpture by Stonorov of Adam and Eve in the Hopkinson House which he also designed
  • 1951 - UAW Solidarity House, Detroit
  • 1952 - Martin House, Wyncote, Pennsylvania
  • 1953 - Schuylkill Falls Housing Project, Philadelphia (demolished, 1996[17])
  • 1962 - Hopkinson House, Washington Square, Philadelphia[18]
  • 1964 - India Pavilion at 1964 World's Fair (with Stonorov & Haws and Mansinh Rana)
  • 1969 - Casa-studio di Jorio Vivarelli, Pistoia, Italy
  • Nancy Cook Most Residence, Valley Forge, PA
  • 1970 - UAW Retreat and Education Facility, Black Lake, MI

Further reading

  • Frampton, Kenneth (1992). "The Eclipse of the New Deal: Buckminster Fuller, Philip Johnson and Louis Kahn 1934-64". Modern Architecture: a critical history (3rd ed. rev. ed.). New York, NY: Thames and Hudson, Inc. pp. 149–151. ISBN 0-500-20257-5.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Sandeen, Eric J. "The Design of Public Housing in the New Deal: Oskar Stonorov and Carl Mackley Houses." American Quarterly, 37 (Winter 1985): 645-67.
  • Wodehouse, Lawrence (1991). "Tucker & Howell and Oscar Stonorov: the Non-Environmentalists". The roots of international style architecture. West Cornwall, CT: Locust Hill Press. pp. 149–151. ISBN 0-933951-46-9.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • "Juniata Park Housing Corporation project in Philadelphia", Architectural Record, 1958 Apr., v. 77, p. 328-329
  • "Preview: New York World's Fair 1964-1965", Architectural Record, 1964 Feb., v. 135, p. 137-144.

External links


  1. Stonorov, Oskar Gregory (1905-1970) at Philadelphia Architects and Buildings]
  2. The Pacific Coast Architecture Database. The Pacific Coast Architecture Database https://digital.lib.washington.edu/architect/partners/1042/. Retrieved 2 May 2014. Missing or empty |title= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "List of Projects and Builds by Stonorov & Kahn Associated Architects". Philadelphia Architects and Buildings. Retrieved 2 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Louis Kahn
  5. Book Details
  6. Robert Venturi biography at PritzerPrize.com
  7. Venturi, Robert Charles: Biography at Answers.com
  8. http://www.arch.state.pa.us/display.asp
  9. National Register of Historic Places Listings -May 15, 1998
  10. Barney, William Pope (1890-1970) - Philadelphia Architects and Buildings
  11. Library Catalog - University of Florida (UF)
  12. Amazon.com: Le Corbusier : Complete Works in Eight Volumes: Books: Willy Boesiger, Oscar Stonorov, Max Bill
  13. planecrashinfo.com Famous People Who Died in Aviation Accidents: 1970s
  14. "Reuther Dies in Jet Crash With Wife and 4 Others". The New York Times, May 10, 1970.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  15. "Elizabeth Foster "Miss Betty" Stonorov March 5, 1906 - December 8, 2003". Charlestown Township.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. Cherokee Village - project/building chronology - Philadelphia Architects and Buildings
  17. "Unusual housing mix to be built", Philadelphia Business Journal, May 26, 2006.
  18. Childress, Nelly. "Hopkinson House: A Unique Residential High-Rise On Washington Square". Hopkinson House. Retrieved 24 November 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>