In the 1950s, the historians Jorge Arango and Carlos Martínez acknowledged the diverse, international background of 20th-century Colombian architects as an essential feature of the country’s architectural environment:

As there were no architectural faculties in Colombia until 1936, the majority of the professionals who made up the country’s contemporary movement, and who founded the country’s first architectural programs, were trained in other countries. The schools of Perret and Le Corbusier arrived from France, accompanied by the reaction against them. Architects trained in Italy and England, in Belgium and Switzerland, in Germany and Spain also arrived in Colombia. Others came from North American schools influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright, Gropius, or Mies van der Rohe, and some came from Beaux-Arts affiliated schools or technical institutes, where construction remained the primary focus. Not a few also came from Chile, whose schools date back to the past century and where the profession has been subject to a continuous process of integration. (Arango and Martínez 1951: 30)1

Of the 24 Bogotan architects and engineers responsible for the first significant contemporary architecture in Colombia, 16 were foreign-trained (Arango and Martínez 1951: 130–32). Although many architectural faculties were established in Colombia in the 1940s, students increasingly trained abroad in the next decades. However, the educational background of Colombian architects has been largely neglected.2 Only recently has the subject of Colombian architectural education been addressed, in the work of Maarten Goossens (2013) regarding ties of Colombian architects with the USA.

This article maps the educational geographies of Colombia’s architects3 from the late 1920s to the end of the 1960s.4 The architects’ educational backgrounds, along with the source of that information, are presented in the three tables at the end of the article. The maps (in Figs. 1, 3 and 6) were generated from these tables (which are a work in progress). The numbers in the maps refer to degrees in architecture, urbanism, and urban/regional planning, and to shorter specialisation courses. Specialisation includes courses often offered by non-academic institutions (e.g. the Bouwcentrum in Rotterdam, or the many municipal or ministerial centres in France and the UK), or by universities, if the programme did not lead to such degrees as a bachelor of architecture or a master’s of architecture (e.g. restoration studies at Rome’s Scuola di Perfezionamento). Complete academic urbanism/planning programmes (e.g. those offered by the Institut d’urbanisme in Paris, or those in the US leading to master’s degrees) are counted as degrees, whereas shorter courses are counted as specialisations.5

This mapping and its proposed interpretation highlight the complex patterns of transfer, circulation, and reception that contributed to the modernist movement in Colombia, in which ideas were both drawn from international models and generated within the continent. As for the longstanding debate on internationalism and regionalism in Latin American architecture, this study suggests that international ideas complemented regional and local developments.6 It is crucial to recognise Colombia as a fluid territory of artistic and technical exchange. To quote Del Real and Gyger (2013: 3), this means moving ‘our understanding of history beyond the limitation of the national into more ambiguous territories, illuminating moments of intra-regional dialogue around specific challenges and solutions’.

As this discussion demonstrates, an internationally well-connected, foreign-trained group of architects transferred theories, models, formal repertoires, and techniques to Colombia. The investigation, using the histoire croisée approach (see Werner and Zimmermann 2006), also reveals the different though intertwined dimensions of architectural transfer, such as the mobility of architects and the contents of their architectural magazines.7 We can then move beyond the characteristic limits of transfer and comparative studies to better understand transactions among different aspects of the architectural profession. The present study thus diachronically explores geographies of artistic exchange influenced as much by historical and geopolitical reasons as by cultural and disciplinary motives, and delineates mid-20th-century architectural education.

This research derives from a wide range of archival and bibliographic sources, verified through extensive cross-referencing. The records came from university archives that often contain resumés or student enrolment papers, university yearbooks, and digital databases by Colombian professional institutions. In addition, books and periodicals on architects were consulted for biographical information. The accuracy of sources appears to decline over time, making older publications more reliable than more recent texts based on second-hand tales and lacking references. A few original oral sources were also consulted. This data facilitated identifying over 200 architectural professionals, whose educational profiles are organised chronologically and geographically in the appended tables. An overview of architectural education by institution was also created according to bibliographic sources and previously recorded oral reports of Colombian students.8 Beyond this, the examination of a limited number of theses, reproduced in magazines and conserved in one archive, enriches our understanding of the teaching environment of architectural programmes in the mid-20th century. The magazine Proa serves as an essential source, as it published projects from Colombian students abroad and documented their training, thus tracing the international foundation of important Colombian architects and projects.9

Until 1936: A European Tradition

During the first two decades of the 20th century, architecture in Colombia was practised mostly by engineers or foreign architects,10 although technical training programmes akin to architectural schools already existed (see González 2013). Few Colombians had received a foreign degree: in Bogotá, Mariano Santamaría, who studied in Weimar (Arango 1984: 11); in Medellín, Juan and Dioniso Lalinde, educated in the UK and New York, respectively (Molina 2001). By the late 1920s, aspiring architects began to study in Europe and, to a lesser extent, the USA, pursuing a trend already common in other professions. Since the mid-19th century, Colombian elites had travelled to France, the UK, and Germany to study medicine, engineering, and applied sciences (Martínez 2001: 212–18).11 It may be argued that the presence of a few recognised foreign architects in Colombia in the 1930s, and the economic and urban growth the country then experienced, justified the investment of earning an architectural degree abroad.12

Three quarters of Colombian architectural students who travelled abroad went to Europe, about equally to France and Belgium, where the main destinations were the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris and Brussels, the Saint-Lucas campuses of the Université catholique de Louvain in Ghent and Brussels, and the Institut d’urbanisme in Paris (Table 1 and Fig. 1).

Figure 1
Figure 1

Educational geographies until 1936.

The architect Antonio Mesa of Medellín divided his study between Belgium and France, while Ignacio Vieira studied at Brussels’ Academie royale des beaux-arts. The Institut d’urbanisme also hosted many Colombians, even after World War II. Notable Institut graduates include Carlos Martínez, a leading figure within the Colombian architectural world who studied under the supervision of Marcel Poëte and in 1946 founded the architectural magazine Proa. The Institut appealed to Colombian students, who sought to learn urbanism in one of the few centres in the world providing such a degree. Its teaching theories and methods were far from the functionalist proposals of CIAM architects in that period, as evidenced by its graduates’ final projects. For instance, the Colombian student Severo Reyes Gamboa submitted a thesis in which he designed a scheme for an industrial city on the outskirts of Cali similar to the Argentinian ideal city of La Plata, but which aligned public buildings along a ring as in Vienna (Fig. 2).

Figure 2
Figure 2

Projet de Cité Industrielle à Cali Colombie, Severo Reyes Gamboa, thesis director, Auguste Bruggeman, 1930. Courtesy of the Bibliothèque historique Poëte et Sellier.

Other Colombian architecture students moved to Germany, Italy, and the US. Julio Bonilla, for instance, was the son of diplomats living in Europe. Bonilla graduated from the Technische Universität München in 1933. Upon his return to Colombia, Bonilla advanced a German language of architectural modernism, designing a dormitory building in Bogotá for the Universidad Nacional in a clearly Bauhaus fashion. At this time, the Universidad Nacional de Colombia (UNC) in Bogotá hosted many other notable architects with degrees from abroad. Jorge Camacho Fajardo, who graduated from the Politecnico di Milano in 1934, was among the first professors of architecture at UNC. Upon his return to Colombia, he submitted the design for a penitentiary showing many formal features typical of Italian Fascist architecture (Camacho 1936). Other Colombian students travelled to the US, although in fewer numbers. John Sierra and Nel Rodríguez from Medellín graduated from Columbia University, the latter studying either architecture or engineering. Some of the most relevant architects in Bogotá also studied in the US. The Carrizosa brothers, Guillermo and Hernando, graduated from the University of Michigan and Purdue University respectively, and Jorge Luzardo studied at the University of Kansas. Far fewer students remained in Latin America. Pablo de la Cruz, who graduated from the Universidad de Chile in the 1930s, was one, while Jorge Arango moved to Santiago to study in the late 1930s, upon the suggestion the Austrian urbanist Karl Brunner made to his father (Arango 2003: 52–53).

The number of Colombian architects educated abroad in the 1930s was smaller than in the following decade, but not inconsequential. The faculty of architecture at the UNC, established in 1936, benefited not only from Colombians educated abroad but also from particular international and national circumstances. A skilled group of Spanish, German, and Italian architects immigrated to Colombia, away from the Spanish Civil War and rising totalitarianisms in Europe and encouraged by the immigration policies of the liberal governments of Alfonso López and Eduardo Santos (Palacio 1995: 161). By 1941, almost 50 percent of UNC’s professors held a foreign degree.13 The impact of UNC’s international faculty has been widely recognised by historians: in particular the role played by Leopold Rother and Bruno Violi (Arango 1989), and Carlos Martínez, a major Corbusian propagandist. In the time they spent abroad, Colombian architects also had the opportunity to make personal connections with important European architects. For example, Antonio Mesa met Le Corbusier during his stay in Paris14 and later contributed to an early reception of the Swiss architect’s work in the faculty of architecture of the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana (established in 1942) in Medellín. Mesa’s relationship with Le Corbusier ensured that in advancing the architect’s ideas, he needed no further intermediation from the professional, academic, and editorial world of the capital.

The 1940s: The Great Shift towards the US

In the 1940s, new faculties appeared in both Medellín and Cali (the one at Universidad del Valle was established 1947) and in the capital (where the architecture faculty of the Universidad de los Andes was founded in 1948). However, despite these developments and the success of Bogotá architecture school, more Colombians headed abroad. Moreover, educational geography changed substantially. The Second World War spurred massive emigration of architects and artists from Europe to the US (Kentgens-Craig 1999), and the landscape of modern architecture changed radically. As European masters took over in many North American universities, US schools (particularly the Catholic University of America in Washington DC, the University of Michigan, Cornell University, and Harvard) became the favoured destination of Colombian students (Table 2 and Fig. 3).

Figure 3
Figure 3

Educational geographies, 1937–1950.

It is important to understand that neither the academic environment of American architectural programmes nor their teaching methodologies were always progressive or cutting edge. Although many programmes welcomed foreign students and professors, the ideas and curricula of North American programmes often remained deeply traditional. In certain aspects, the Bogotá UNC faculty was more progressive than many North American ones.15 Jorge Arango recalls that in the early 1940s, many Colombian architects trained in the USA were doing ‘traditional’ design, meaning Spanish or Georgian (Arango 2003: 169). Arango may have been referring to prominent figures of the Colombian Society of Architects such as Álvaro Hermida Guzmán or José Gnecco Fallón, both educated at the University of California, an epicentre of the neo-colonial tradition. In Cali, major architects working in a neo-colonial manner were all trained in the US: Alfonso Garrido, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the Calero Tejada brothers, Álvaro and Hermann, respectively from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute16 and California, where their Mexican brother-in-law Félix Mier y Terán was also educated (Ramírez, Gutiérrez and Uribe 2000: 77–105).

A great number of Colombians studied at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, one of the first American universities with an architectural curriculum.17 The programme was formalised in 1906 by Emil Lorch who, in introducing the Pure Design method, favoured Beaux-Arts principles over abstract exercises. In 1923 Lorch invited Eliel Saarinen to teach at the College of Architecture and Design, and later, the Danish architect Knud Lönberg-Holm also joined the faculty (Alofsin 2012: 98; Bartlett 1995). After World War II, the College of Architecture and Design distinguished itself for the research it conducted in prefabrication, and for its merge of architecture and city planning according to Gropius’s idea of teamwork (Ockman and Sachs: 2012). However, by the late 1940s, the environment at the University of Michigan was still not entirely open to modernism. The Colombian student Francisco Pizano told Juan Luis Rodríguez in an interview:

There [at U. of Michigan], to our surprise, modern architecture did not exist. […] As opposed to what was going on at the [Universidad] Nacional, where nothing prior to 1925 inspired us, in Ann Arbor nothing subsequent to 1925 had space. […] In Michigan, what was absent was modernism. […] Roberto [Rodríguez] and I, with our studies at the Nacional, belonged to the vanguard, which the school did not fight and preferred to let free. Even outside the school the situation was so uncertain that a firm from Detroit contacted me to work in a project for a country club only because one of the firm members said that I used to make architecture like that seen at MoMA. (Rodríguez 2008: 24–25)

In the Midwest, the Illinois Institute of Technology, then directed by Mies van der Rohe, pioneered progressive modern architecture. Its influence and Ann Arbor’s proximity to the East Coast certainly favoured the spread of modernism and direct contact with many important figures. For example, Enrique Triana met Josep Lluís Sert, Buckminster Fuller, Eliel Saarinen, and Minoru Yamasaki while at the University of Michigan (Samper 2000: 132). Similarly, in the 1950s the University of Illinois environment was permeated by Miesian modernism (Universidad de los Andes 2006). A few Colombians graduated from there, and a whole generation of civil engineers from the Universidad de los Andes ended their studies there (see Illio).

Many Colombians, including the cousins José María and Rafael Obregón, Pablo Valenzuela, and Jaime Nieto Cano, attended the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC, whose architecture faculty in the 1940s was directed by Frederick V. Murphy according to Beaux-Arts principles. There were many reasons for this choice: preference for a Catholic institution, proximity to the diplomatic environment, and personal recommendation (Goossens 2013). Other Colombians chose more elite schools, such as Syracuse, Cornell, and the Pennsylvania. The latter remained a Beaux-Arts stronghold until the end of the 1950s (Alofsin 2012: 115).

Also notable are the few students who took postgraduate courses at Yale and Harvard in the 1940s. Jorge Gaitán and Jaime Nieto studied at Yale, while at Harvard, Álvaro Ortega and Gabriel Solano studied with Walter Gropius and tightened their personal relationship with Marcel Breuer. Eduardo Mejía, among others, also attended Harvard.18 The two schools shared little more than a great reputation. Harvard, together with the IIT, represented the bastion of European modernism transplanted to the US. Major European masters — Gropius, Marcel Breuer, Martin Wagner, and Sigfried Giedion — came to Harvard following Joseph Hudnut’s reform of 1935, which unified the schools of architecture and landscape architecture with city planning under the umbrella of the new Graduate School of Design (Alofsin 2002). At Yale, the School of Fine Arts embraced modernism more gradually under dean Everett Victor Meeks. The Architectural Forum reported:

Under his [Meeks’] guidance, New Haven’s genteel art academy had developed into one of the foremost professional training grounds in the country. Now, without relinquishing his own Beaux Arts ideal, he gradually changed the college philosophy to keep up with the changing times. From a strictly eclectic curriculum, he switched over a period of years to advanced studies of prefabrication and city planning. He brought in such radical lecturers as Le Corbusier, Frank Lloyd Wright, Eliel Saarinen, Buckminster Fuller, Alvar Aalto, Férnand Leger and Amédée Ozenfant to amaze the inmates of his Gothic catacombs. Once again, dean Meeks had kept the rein in his hands. […] Unlike the recent design revolution at Harvard under Walter Gropius, Yale’s switch to contemporary thinking was a gradual evolution, gaining impetus a decade ago and changing over the years to its present strictly modern curriculum. (The Architectural Forum 1947: 75–154)

After a long journey from Barranquilla, Gaitán arrived in New Haven in April 1943. There, he met his future office partner Jaime Nieto, as well as several other prominent Colombians, such as former president Eduardo Santos. In a few letters to his family, Gaitán told of his first weeks in the country, relating with some astonishment the high living costs and expressing his relief at having received a scholarship for the first two months of study (JGCPA-1). But Gaitán embraced his time at Yale as an opportunity to expand his horizons. In New York, he encountered modern abstract art at the opening of Alexander Calder’s Mobiles exhibition, where he also met Sert.19 By May of his first year, Gaitán had started work on a hotel project, which later became his thesis and was published in Ingeniería y Arquitectura (JGCPA-2; Gaitán 1944). The project was designed in a modernist fashion with certain Cariocan reminiscences, such as the brise-soleil and organic shapes within regular blocks (Fig. 4).

Figure 4
Figure 4

The thesis project by Jorge Gaitán Cortés at Yale University. Published in Ingeniería y Arquitectura, 58 (1944): 12. Courtesy of Gaitán’s family.

Although the outbreak of World War II undoubtedly represented the main impetus behind architects’ abandonment of Europe in favour of North American universities, other factors contributed to the post-war continuity of this trend. The European shift to America should be read within the geopolitical framework of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Good Neighbor Policy, as well as by specific economic and cultural strategies adopted during the War — the promotion of Brazilian modernism being the emblematic case (see Cavalcanti 2004; Del Real 2012).20

During the 1940s, ties with the US became visible in the academic field. Already in 1939, Gabriel Serrano visited the New York World’s Fair and various faculties of architecture along the East Coast. The same year, Jorge Triana (1940), dean of the Bogotá faculty of mathematics and engineering, undertook a similar journey. Serrano’s tour included four renowned institutions: Columbia, Harvard, MIT, and Yale. At Columbia, as Serrano noted, students produced complete projects in full detail within integrated workshops while under Gropius’s guidance:

The Harvard school completely broke with the traditionalist school; their problems are real, and their solutions fit the most modern technical advancements; with plenty of reason, much importance is given in projects to issues of construction, so its tendency is to make a functional architecture. (Serrano 1939: 24)

In 1940, Roberto Ancízar, dean of the faculty of architecture, participated in a similar trip throughout many US universities (Ingeniería y Arquitectura 1940). In Chile, Lincoln Kirstein, a member of MoMA’s Advisory Committee, approached Arango and the Department of State invited him to the US (Arango 2003: 111–112), while at the end of the 1940s Hernán Vieco, according to L’Architecture d’aujourd’hui (AA 1958a), visited different architectural schools in the US during a trip funded by the Rockefeller Foundation. Later, in the 1960s, the Rockefeller Foundation sponsored exchanges between Cornell and the Universidad del Valle for students and professors of architecture. But more than bringing Colombians to the US, this programme increased the number of Latin American professors in the Americas.21

During the 1940s every UNC staff member or student returning from the United States was asked to submit a report about architectural pedagogy in the schools they visited.22 In the Bogotá faculty, reference to North American programmes was also a constant theme in discussing the school’s own architectural curriculum. A real effect became visible only in 1948, when Eduardo Mejía became dean after returning from Harvard, and a new curriculum was introduced. This reform has been labelled as ‘Bauhausian’, as it diminished the role of subjects such as architectural history (Niño 1987: 52–53). But the principles underlying the programme’s reform did not entirely derive from the Bauhaus model. The school adopted the precepts of realism that characterised Hudnut’s reforms at Columbia and Harvard (see Alofsin 2002). In a report about the study plan, Mejía wrote, ‘in the part concerning urbanism, works on actual Colombian problems are undertaken, with all possible closeness to reality’.23 Furthermore, the integration of workshops with different subjects recalled Gropius’s ideal of teamwork. However, the curriculum still promoted a broad training of architects — in building design, urban planning, and engineering — contrary to the principles of specialisation promoted by US schools, and indeed, the very structure of architectural studies in these programmes.

The tie between leading Colombian architects and the US also paved the way for the international reception of Colombian modernism. Francis Violich observed that ‘more functional design is to be found in Bogotá, Colombia, where a group of younger men, several of whom have been trained in North American architectural schools, have had an opportunity to build office buildings, apartments, and residences (Violich 1944: 128). The direct ties of Ortega, Solano and Gaitán with North America favoured the diffusion of their architecture; in particular, the 11 de Noviembre baseball stadium in Cartagena and the bus workshop and station in Bogotá. These works circulated within major international magazines like The Architectural Forum, Architectural Record, and L’Architecture d’aujourd’hui, defining the first international reception of Colombian modernism. In a special issue of the French journal dedicated to Gropius’s influence, such as his teaching at Harvard, the baseball stadium in Cartagena became the first Colombian building to receive international press coverage (AA 1950: 93).24 Later on, Ortega, Solano and Gaitán, together with Gabriel Serrano and his firm Cusego, gained even more visibility in Henry-Russell Hitchcock’s book Latin American Architecture Since 1945, where Colombia was the third most represented country.

For Hitchcock, the real North American influence on Latin architects came not from the work, scattered throughout the continent, of US firms but from the simple fact that many Colombian architects had trained in the US:

A very considerable proportion of the best Latin American architects, therefore, particularly those under forty, owe at least the final stages of their professional education to the architectural schools of the United States. It is not alone the more famous and old established schools or those that have been headed by world famous architects like Gropius and Mies, not just Harvard, Illinois Institute of Technology, Yale, Cornell, and Columbia, but less internationally known schools such as the University of Michigan, Georgia Institute of Technology and the Universities of Oregon and Florida […]. Nowhere [than in Colombia] are there more architects whose training is in North America and many of the characteristic problems they have faced are more familiar in North America then elsewhere in South America. (Hitchcock 1955: 20–37)

Nonetheless, despite the predominant shift towards North America in the 1950s, Europe’s influence had not entirely faded. But within Europe, architectural culture had evolved. The Beaux-Arts schools were no longer a valued destination; interest was restricted mostly to British universities and some French specialist programmes. Many Colombians headed for Europe, mostly for specialisation courses in topics such as urban planning and prefabrication. Often, these students were already recognised architects and academics, such as Hernando Pinzón Isaza, a professor at the UNC in Bogotá,25 who attended some courses on urban planning, construction, and mathematics at Durham University between 1947 and 1949. While at Durham, Pinzón wrote to the UNC dean:

Professor Allen, dean of the department of urbanism of Durham University, my director and supervisor, is preparing for me a series of visits in other universities and different sectors of England and Scotland, where I will be able to see in practice not only the ongoing reconstruction in the cities destroyed by the War, but also the planning and construction of new satellite cities and the solution of the housing problem by means of prefabricated houses.26

In his final report submitted to the UNC faculty, Pinzón explained his intention of modifying his courses in geometry, trigonometry, and construction once in Colombia, and adding a section on prefabrication. He had visited a factory where houses were produced with concrete and a minimum use of steel, making this technology potentially suitable for Colombia, a country that lacked this material. In England, Pinzón also attended courses, organised by other institutions, on urban and rural planning and on theory of construction. He also visited various cities, discussing new urban design programmes with those in charge, as well as factories of prefabricated houses and neighbourhoods built with this technology. He noted that reconstruction problems of the 1950s were the same as 50 years earlier, but were now tackled according to CIAM’s four functions:

Nowadays, the plans are not to achieve an appealing drawing on a paper sheet, following axial symmetry or shaping circles and semicircles, or tracing radial avenues around a monument or a cathedral; [reconstruction has] been designed for people who live and work in the city, with a logical relation between home and workplace; it has been designed to provide a happy and hygienic life to a population adjusted within certain limits, with an adequate coefficient of density and in an area where the main factors are not limited to air, light, beauty, space, and vegetation; but also pedestrian safety, free vehicular movement and transports’ efficacy and rapidity.27

Pinzón’s report ended with some suggestions, such as funding a faculty of urban planning, and sending a group of architects to the United Kingdom to study urbanism.28 This interest in British planning appears to have developed in many Latin American countries at the same time, as a panoramic reading of major architectural magazines proves. Not only Proa and Ingeniería y Arquitectura, but also the Cuban and Uruguayan Arquitectura, the Mexican Arquitectura México, the Argentinian Nuestra Arquitectura and Revista de Arquitectura, and to a lesser extent the Chilean Arquitectura y Construcción, all reveal a common attention towards Great Britain. All over the continent, articles on the reconstruction of British cities and the development of prefabricated housing and school buildings were circulating, thanks to both the magazines’ networks and British propaganda efforts. In Colombia, Ingeniería y Arquitectura and Proa devoted a significant number of articles to the same themes. In Bogotá, the first exhibition on international architecture was dedicated to British production,29 while the Spanish architect Santiago de la Mora, a professor of urbanism at the UNC since 1946, promoted Patrick Abercrombie’s theories, whose book Planeamiento de la ciudad y del campo he had translated into Spanish in 1936.

Although the decade of the 1940s seems to have been dominated by the relationship between Colombia and the US, given the large number of architects who trained abroad, historians of Colombian architecture have been reluctant to acknowledge these circumstances. Instead, their attention has focussed on the contribution of European immigrants in Colombia and Le Corbusier’s arrival in the country in 1947. In that year, however, 32 of the 72 (44%) professionals registered at the Sociedad Colombiana de Arquitectos (SCA 1947) had spent at least a period of study abroad. Moreover, 18 of the 72 (25%) had gained experience in the United States. Therefore, Maarten Goossens’s claim regarding the necessity of refocusing on the Colombo-US relationships, and eventually redefining the ‘generation Proa’ (Arango 1989: 211) as the ‘generation USA’ (Goossens 2013), seems convincing. The many consequences of this rich dialogue have still not been sufficiently explored. Numerous projects completed in Colombia show a direct link with the works studied by Colombians during their stay in the USA. The hospitals with flat roofs and white surfaces, designed by Serrano’s students in 1939, reveal a clear Gropius influence (Goossens 2013), while Felipe Rolnik’s project for a church in Quiroga, Bogotá, is a clear homage to Eduardo Catalano, his professor at North Carolina State University (Proa 1955a; Fig. 5). The entire residential production of firms such as Obregón & Valenzuela or Pizano, Pradilla & Caro also shows a great affinity with the houses of Mies, Breuer, and above all, Richard Neutra.

Figure 5
Figure 5

A project in Bogotá by Felipe Rolnik, former student at North Carolina State University. Published in Proa, 87 (1955): 13. Courtesy of Proa.

However, the training received by many Colombian architects in US schools affected Colombian architecture in more than just formal terms; it also defined its very mode of production. More than quickly consumed formal repertoires, these experiences proved to be rooted in the way architecture was conceived and built. Architects began to work according to precise models and technologies adapted to local material conditions. Concrete construction developed in response to the lack of structural steel (Téllez 1979: 395; Vargas 2009), while typical North American elements such as the curtain wall were successfully adopted (as Hitchcock’s chapter ‘Urban Façade’ proved; 1955: 191–97) and were visible in the work of many firms, from Cusego to Sudarsky & Menéndez.30 Goossens (2013) highlights the diffusion in Colombia of US installations and construction products, and, by the late 1930s, the development of many integrated firms of design, engineering, and construction akin to North American models. In the meantime, Harvard-trained Ortega and Solano became pioneers of prefabricated thin concrete barrel vaults with the Vacuum Concrete patent (Proa 1955b; Ortega 1989) following Gropius’s and Breuer’s ideals, and realised three projects in Philadelphia (The Architectural Forum 1955). They were also among those interested in manufacturing modern furniture — they attempted to produce some of Breuer’s chairs — as well as prefabricated modular kitchens and bathrooms (MBDA-1 and 2).

Furniture design, in fact, represents another field strongly affected by Colombo-US relations, as most of the Colombian designers and architects involved in furniture production were trained in North America. Jorge Arango, who was well acquainted with US furniture design,31 set up the modern manufacturing firm Artecto in partnership with Ernesto Vivas Puyana (Gómez 2008). Artecto was the initiator of modern style furniture in Colombia, and quickly ‘became synonymous with functional furniture’ (Proa 1952d: 18). Many cases follow similar paths. The US-trained industrial engineer Guillermo Durana pioneered serial manufacturing of classic furniture for Camacho Roldán (Gómez 2008: 196), which later shifted towards ‘modern and functional’ design under the direction of Juan Manuel García, who was educated at the Chicago Art Institute (Proa 1952d). Álvaro Sáenz Camacho, who worked for both Camacho Roldán and Artecto, trained at Cornell (Aragón and Espinosa 1965). Later, another US-educated designer, Roberto Bermúdez Santamaría, introduced modern design in Fabrex (Gómez 2008: 195). Last but not least, Enrique Triana and Santiago Vargas Rocha, respectively from the University of Michigan and Stanford, played a fundamental role in the field during the 1950s (Fríes and Saldarriaga 2001).

The contribution of US-educated architects to the transfer of modern ideas of planning also appears crucial, as Goossens (2014) implicitly suggests in regard to the introduction to Colombia of elements such as neighbourhood units and separated networks of pedestrian circulation. The very masterplan for Bogotá was marked by a long competition between the team of Le Corbusier, Paul Lester Wiener and Sert, supported by Carlos Martínez and others, and Breuer, promoted by Solano and Ortega.32 The very diffusion of North American architecture in Colombian magazines seems to be due to these study experiences and the subsequent personal and professional connections. One of the clearest cases is that of Marcel Breuer. In Proa, the Hungarian was probably the most followed architect active in the USA, more so than Gropius, Mies, Neutra, or Wright. His work began to be featured in 1949, when his house in Connecticut was published (Proa 1949), and continued throughout the early 1950s with four projects (Proa 1951b, 1953a, b, 1954).

The 1950s: The Fragmentation of Routes and the Rise of Latin American Schools

The 1950s marked a new shift in the international geographies of Colombian architects. By the 1940s, the number of Colombians travelling to other Latin American countries had increased dramatically for the first time. In that decade, Chile became the major continental pole, with students divided between the Universidad de Chile and the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. Movement to Brazil also began by the end of the decade, although this trend became evident only in the 1950s. From then on, Colombians started to move to other South American countries almost as much as they did to the US. In this changed context, the most important phenomenon was the rise of Brazil as the main continental destination (Table 3 and Fig. 6).

Figure 6
Figure 6

Educational geographies, 1951–1970.

The relationships between Colombia and Brazil, including the reception of Brazilian modernism in Colombia, have not yet been studied in depth. What history presents is a limited vision of the relationship between the two countries, focusing on shared ‘formal influences’ (Arango 1989: 219) and ‘fashions’ (Téllez 1998: 92–93). However, the presence of many Colombian students in Brazil produced a widespread diffusion of Cariocan modernism in Colombia. The amount of space Proa dedicated to Brazilian architects during the early 1950s, starting with the monographic issue 47 (Flórez and Riaño 1951), was largely due to these direct connections. In particular, Humberto Flórez Álvarez and Luis José Riaño, who graduated in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, respectively, continued sending graphic material to the magazine after editing this special issue. Jacobo Kuperman, who studied in Rio de Janeiro, also acted as correspondent from Brazil (Proa 1953c; Fig. 7). Thanks to these sources, not only was the work of the renowned masters acknowledged in Proa, but also that of less well-known architects;33 for the first time, schools like Carioca and the Paulista found an international audience (Proa 1952c).

Figure 7
Figure 7

A competition project in Brazil by Jacobo Kupermann, a Colombian student at the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro. Published in Proa, 73 (1953): 22. Courtesy of Proa.

In relation to Brazilian education, two things must be emphasised. Firstly, movements towards Brazil started at the end of the 1940s, when architects in Colombia began to look to the country after Serrano’s trip there, the report of which was partially released (Serrano 1948). The diffusion of Goodwin’s Brazil Builds (1943) was also significant. This mobility gained momentum in the early 1950s, after the international reception of Brazilian modernism had reached its apogee, and continued up to the 1960s despite growing critiques addressed to Cariocan architects (see Bill 1953). Secondly, with few exceptions, Colombians who went to Brazil attended the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, where figures like Sérgio Bernardes, Affonso Eduardo Reidy, and Ernâni Mendes de Vasconcelos had teaching positions. This meant there was a clear choice of schools. Rio was the city of Niemeyer, and the faculty, notwithstanding his absence, was devoted to his achievements.34 Most Colombian students in Rio came from Bogotá and Cali. About 25 have been identified so far, but the number may have been much higher, as an article in Proa (1952a) suggests. How these experiences contributed to spreading the Brazilian-Cariocan formal repertoire is exemplified in the work of the firm Noguera y Santander, whose collaborator, Álvaro Larreamendy, had graduated in Rio de Janeiro. Projects such as the Sefair House, which includes multiple Cariocan elements, including two ramps, an organic-shaped garden, and a curved roof inscribed within a thin regular structure, as well as many others, prove this tendency (examples can be found in Suramericana Editores 1960: 78–87).

The 1950s seemed to be characterised by an increased circulation of architects within Latin American countries, not just Brazil. Surprisingly, not many went to Argentina, Uruguay, México, or even Venezuela — a growing neighbouring country linked to Colombia by a developed system of academic and professional relations. A significant number of Colombian students graduated in Ecuador, although perhaps most were Ecuadorians who later emigrated to Colombia, rather than Colombian natives. At the same time, students continued to immigrate to Chile (Fig. 8).

Figure 8
Figure 8

A professional project by Rubén Flórez Espinosa, presented by the Colombian student as thesis at the Universidad de Chile. Published in Proa, 46 (1951a): 21. Courtesy of Proa.

But it is worth emphasising that the Pontificia Universidad Católica and the Universidad de Chile in Santiago were far from being modernist strongholds in the 1940s. In the latter, a major reform took place only in 1946, following pressure from both students and professors (Mondragón 2006: 32). In Católica, leadership of the programme was the object of competition between Alberto Risopatrón and Alfredo Johnson, who supported continuity according to Beaux-Arts principles, and Sergio Larraín and Emilio Duhart, who pushed for the introduction of a Bauhaus pedagogy. In the 1940s, the faculty at Católica reached a compromise. The curriculum was divided, with the first two years given to classic teaching, and the remaining three guided by modernist architects. Only in 1949, after various resignations and a student strike, was new reform at Católica undertaken, resulting in Larraín’s election as dean in 1952 (Mondragón 2006: 38). Like many American schools, the Chilean case shows that Colombian architects’ study abroad did not necessary imply an encounter with a more progressive architectural environment.

In Europe, geographies changed again. France remained a major destination, but Italy emerged with both Milan and Rome as the main continental pole. This was likely due to both the interest in preservation studies35 and to the appeal of Bruno Zevi’s ideas, which were then well known all over South America (Rueda 2012: 89–90). In the 1940s and ’50s, the Bouwcentrum in Rotterdam also received a significant number of Colombian students, who came to take specialised courses.36 In the US, on the other hand, the most remarkable change was in its internal geography, with the rise of some schools located in the southern part of the country, such as Tulane University and the Georgia Institute of Technology, and the universities of Florida, Miami, and Texas.

Conclusions: Geographies for Another History

Studying the educational geographies of Colombian architects represents a first and partial attempt to build a different cultural geography of architecture in Colombia and to expand its existing history. As the historian Carlos Niño (1991: 110) points out, there is still much work to do on the broader context of the architectural profession in mid-20th-century Colombia. The mainstream narrative cites many ‘influences’,37 such as Gropius, Mies, Le Corbusier, Aalto, Wright, and Niemeyer (Saldarriaga 1983; Téllez 1979) without exploring their reception paths. In addition, Colombian historiography has emphasised the contribution of some European immigrants, particularly Violi and Rother, and of Le Corbusier and his collaborators Rogelio Salmona and Germán Samper. This Eurocentric outlook has helped to establish a narrative in which a few heroes, increasingly identified as representatives of a truly Colombian modernism, stand out. Yet Salmona’s or Fernando Martínez Sanabria’s architecture shares very little with the modernism of Gropius, Mies, or Breuer, and it also differs from that of other Colombians, such as Gaitán, Ortega, Solano, Obregón & Valenzuela, all of whom trained in the US. This also produced a very interesting shift in the international reception of Colombian architecture, which, in less than two decades, moved from being identified as influenced by North American practitioners (Violich 1944; Hitchcock 1955) to becoming entirely associated with Salmona’s brickwork poetics (see Liernur 2015: 76).38

As a new generation of Latin American historians emerged in the 1970s who used history as a tool to affirm regional values (Segre 1999: 21), Colombian architecture began to be identified with this tendency, and historiographic problems increasingly acquired a regionalist perspective (see Mondragón and Lanuza 2008). The same happened with Brazil-inspired architecture, whose buildings scarcely fit this dominant narrative. The history of Colombian architecture, therefore, has neglected a large group of architects, ignoring their international experiences and the multiple transfer routes contributing to the modernisation of the profession in that country. More importantly, extending the study of educational geographies to the whole continent may help overcome another well-established topos: the lack of dialogue among Latin American countries. In the 1920s, this idea was already widespread among intellectuals and architects, and it has permeated Latin American historiography until recently (see, for example, Niño 1991: 234), despite some early concerns. Hitchcock, for instance, recognised, though without questioning the phenomenon, the increasing circulation of architects across the continent: ‘Building materials rarely travel by air, but most architects do and their ideas as well’ (1955: 11–12).

As for the circulation of people and ideas within Latin America, Carranza and Lara’s (2014) provocative final chapter, ‘Islands No More?’ warrants discussion. The Colombian case proves that in the 20th century architectural students regularly studied in Chile, and also new educational hubs evolved, such as Brazil. Moreover, figures show that by the 1960s, the number of architects heading for the US almost equalled those moving to other Latin American countries (Fig. 10), and circulation along certain Latin routes became increasingly congested. To maintain Carranza and Lara’s metaphor, as in any archipelago, certain islands are better connected than others, despite geographical proximity.

Figure 9
Figure 9

José Luis Giraldo Jaramillo’s diploma from the Scuola di Specializzazione per lo Studio ed il Restauro dei Monumenti (Roma) with exams record.

Figure 10
Figure 10

Trends in a timeline (only degrees in architecture and specialisation courses), 1900–1970.

This agrees with recent studies that demonstrate the fluidity of ideas circulating within Latin America in the 1920s through broad cultural networks (see Pini and Ramírez 2012; Bernal 2015). Extending this review to the architectural profession would provide complementary tools for a more ‘connected’ architectural history of the continent.39 Furthermore, framing these movements geopolitically may add another layer to the existing history. Scholarship on actors and knowledge circulation has developed in the field of architecture, focussing on global empires (on the British, see Bremner 2016 and Willis 2016; on the Portuguese, with an actor-network theory approach, see Faria 2016). Similarly, the race of Colombian architects towards the US seems a clear expression of cultural dependency (see Carnoy 1974) within an informal empire. However, the rise of some Latin American architectural schools as educational destinations may be read in two ways: as a further consequence of imperial patronage — not only in the sponsorship of Latin American modernisms, but also in inter-American cooperation that fostered internal mobility — and also as an emancipatory response to this patronage. Finally, the scrutiny of architects’ mobility and their networks in the Colombian case suggests how the role of magazines should be specifically read. Periodicals functioned as complementary tools in the diffusion of international models (Torrent 2011 and 2012), which reflected current trends and became spaces for the representation of wider cultural dialogues.

Table 1

Colombian student destinations until 1936.

Name Undergraduate Postgraduate or specialisation Source
R. Ancízar Sordo U. de Barcelona + U. catholique de Louvain, Campus Sint-Lucas Ghent Angulo 1987
J. Bonilla Plata (1908–?) Technische U. München (1933) Universidad Nacional 1941
A. Borda Tanco (Eng.) Politecnico di Torino (1892) Torres and Salazar 2002
J. Camacho Fajardo Politecnico di Milano (1933) Universidad Nacional 1941
H. Child Dávila (1906–?) King’s College London (1929) Arango 1996
P. de la Cruz (1894–1954) U. de Antioquia (Eng.) + U. de Chile [before 1934] CPNAA; República de Colombia 1934
C. Cuéllar Tamayo (1908–?) Architectural Association (1934) Aragón and Espinosa 1965
G. García Bruxelles [?] Universidad Nacional 1941
C. García Álvarez (Eng.) City and Guilds of London Institute República de Colombia 1934
C. García Prada U. of Michigan Washington [?] Revista de la Facultad 1929
H. González Varona (Popayán, 1808–Bogotá, 1988) Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (1935) Transit 1935
G. Herrera Carrizosa U. of Michigan École des Beaux-Arts de Fontainebleau Angulo 1987
H. Herrera Carrizosa Purdue U. Escovar 2005
J. Luzardo (1904–?) U. of Kansas Arango 1996
A. Manrique Martín (1898–1968) (Eng.) U.N. Bogotá (1912) (Arch.) Bruxelles [?] (1912 starts) Alberto Manrique 1968
C. Martínez Jiménez (1906–91) Instituto Técnico Bogotá (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris (1930) + École Spéciale des Travaux Publics Téllez 1991; BPS-EUP
[?] Puerta (Eng.) Ghent [?] Grillo 1938
P. Rocha (1914–52) London [?] Arango 1996
[?] Sánchez (Eng.) Brussels [?] Grillo 1938
E. de Santamaría (1875–?) [?] (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris BPS-EUP
M. Santamaría (1857–1915) Weimar [?] (1880) Arango 1989
S. Trujillo (1905–?) (Eng.) Brussels [?] (Arch.) Ghent [?] Arango 1996
H. Velasco Belgium [?] (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris Téllez 1991; BPS-EUP
M. de Vengoechea (1911–83) École des beaux-arts de Paris (1937) Crosnier and Timbert 2015
P.N. Gómez (1899–1984) (Eng.) Escuela de Minas (1922) Accademia di Architettura + Accademia di Belle Arti Firenze González 2014
D. Lalinde (Arch. Eng.) New York [?] [before 1920] Molina 2001
J. Lalinde UK [?] [before 1900] Molina 2001
J. Mejía (Eng.) Brussels [?] Arango et al. 1982
A. Mesa Jaramillo (1911–1971) U. catholique de Louvain, Campus Sint-Lucas + Académie royale des beaux-arts de Bruxelles + École nationale supérieure des arts décoratifs de Paris Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana 1998
E. Olarte (Eng.) Escuela de Minas (Arch.) UK [?] Botero 1996; Molina 2001
J. Restrepo Georgia State U. [1930] Vélez 2003
J.F. Restrepo (?) Columbia U. (1928) Bernal, Gallego, and Jaramillo
N. Rodríguez (1903–?) (Eng.?) Columbia U. (1923) École des beaux-arts de Paris [?] Samper 2000
J. Sierra Columbia U. Arango et al. 1982
F. Vásquez U. of Liverpool (1935) Samper 2000
I. Vieira Jaramillo Académie royale des beaux-arts de Bruxelles (1933) (Urb.) Paris [?] (1951) Arango et al. 1982
A. Garrido T. (Eng.) [?] Massachusetts Institute of Technology Ramírez and Gutiérrez 2000
S. Reyes Gamboa (1905–?) [?] (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris (1930) BPS-EUP
O. Giraldo Maury (1910–?) U. catholique de Louvain, Campus Sint-Lucas Bruxelles Bell 2016
A. Carvajal (1907–?) École des beaux-arts de Paris (1935) Crosnier and Timbert 2015
Unknown city
J. Corredor Latorre Académie royale des beaux-arts de Bruxelles (1900) González 2013
M.M. Sánchez (1906–?) (Arch.) [?] (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris (1931) BPS-EUP
L.C. Villamizar (Eng.) Tulane U. (1937) Jambalaya 1937
  • Note: Degree is in architecture unless otherwise stated: Arch. Eng. = Architectural Engineer; Eng. = Civil Engineer; Des. = Design (interior, unless otherwise stated); Urb. = Urbanism/Planning; Spec. = Specialisation; int. = interrupted studies.

Table 2

Colombian student destinations, 1937–1950.

Name Undergraduate Postgraduate or specialisation Source
J. Arango Sanín (1916–2007) Pontificia U. Católica de Chile (1942) (internship) Harvard U. Arango and Martínez 1951
A. Arboleda A. École polytechnique de Bruxelles [before 1940] CPNAA
G. Bermúdez Umaña (1924–95) Pontificia U. Católica de Chile (1942–43, int.) + U.N. Bogotá (1948) Samper 2000
Á. Cárdenas Moreno Syracuse U. [before 1948] CPNAA
H. Carvajal E. U. Católica de Valparaíso ACHUNC-1949
G. Delgado Padilla Architectural Association SCA 1949
C. Dupuy Casabianca U.N. Bogotá (1945) (Spec. school architecture) London and Paris (1946–48) + (Spec. prefabrication) [?] France (1961) Aragón and Espinosa 1965
F. Escobar U. of California Berkeley (1941) Blue and Gold Yearbook 1941
J. Gaitán Cortés (1920–68) U.N. Bogotá (1942) Yale U. (1944) Arango and Martínez 1951
C. Garcés U.N. Bogotá (int. 1945) + USA [?] ACHUNC-1945
J.M. García (des.) Chicago Art Institue Proa 1952d
J.I. Gnecco Fallón (1909–?) U. of California (1937) SCA 1946
J. Gómez Hoyos (Manizales) U. of Notre Dame (1938) Devine 1999
H. González U. of Michigan (int.) + U. of Oregon Oregana 1946
G. González Zuleta (Eng.) U. de Chile (int.) + (Eng.) U.N. Bogotá (1940) Arango and Martínez 1951
J.A. Guerrero U. de Chile [before 1943] CPNAA
Á. Hermida Guzmán U. of California Berkeley (1940) U. of California Berkeley (1941) + (Spec.) Instituto de Bellas Artes de San Miguel de Allende — México Samper 2000
A. Herrera U.N. Bogotá (int.) + The Catholic U. of America (1942) The Catholic 1943 (9)
L. Knobel U.N. Bogotá (int. 1947) + U. of Colorado ACHUNC-1947
E. Mejía Tapia U.N. Bogotá (1943) (Spec.) U. of Pennsylvania + Harvard U. (1947) Arango and Martínez 1951
J. Moya Cadena U.N. Bogotá (1947) Cranbrook Academy of Art Hitchcock 1955
J. Nieto Cano U.N. Bogotá (int.) + The Catholic U. of America (1942) Yale U. (1943) The Catholic 1943 (9); Arango and Martínez 1951
A. Noguera U. catholique de Louvain, Campus Sint-Lucas Bruxelles Suramericana Editores 1960
J.M. Obregón The Catholic U. of America (1944) Arango and Martínez 1951
R. Obregón The Catholic U. of America (1943) Arango and Martínez 1951
Á. Ortega (1920–91) Paris [?] (int.) + McGill U. (1944) Harvard U. (1945) Vargas and Vargas 2009–10
C.E. Pérez USA [?] Téllez 1988
H. Pinzón Isaza U.N. Bogotá (1941) (Spec. mathematics, prefabrication and urbanism) Durham U. (1948) ACHUNC-1948
F. Pizano de Brigard (1906–?) U.N. Bogotá (int.) + U. of Michigan (1948) Arango and Martínez 1951
J. Ponce de León U.N. Bogotá (1948) Architectural Association Aragón and Espinosa 1965
Á. Pradilla Keith U.N. Bogotá (1947) Dartmouth College Aragón and Espinosa 1965
G. Puyana García (1926–?) U. de Buenos Aires (1948) Aragón and Espinosa 1965
Á. Ramírez U.N. Bogotá (int. 1944) + USA [?] ACHUNC-1944
S.E. Ricaurte Samper U. of Michigan (1939) Harvard U. Michiganesian 1939; Aragón and Espinosa 1965
A. Roa Hoyos U. of Manitoba (1949) + U.N. Bogotá (1953) ACHUNC-1953
R. Rodríguez Silva (1924–2012) U.N. Bogotá (int.) + U. of Michigan (1948) Michiganesian 1948
Á. Sáenz Camacho Massachusetts Institute of Technology Cornell U. (1943) Aragón and Espinosa 1965
D. Salcedo González U. of Texas at Austin (1949) ACHUNC-1954
G. Samper U. of Michigan (1942) Michiganesian 1942
M.F. Samper U. of Michigan (1939) Michiganesian 1939
A. Sanz de Santamaría (Eng.) Cornell U. Aragón and Espinosa 1965
G. Serrano Camargo (1909–82) (Eng. + Arch.) U.N. Bogotá (1934+1949) (Spec. hospital architecture) [?] Washington (1949) SCA 1949
M. Silva Cherau (Santiago de Chile) Santiago de Chile [?] (int.) + U.N. Bogotá SCA 1946
G. Solano Mesa (1916–?) U.N. Bogotá (1941) U. of Pennsylvania (1944) + Harvard U. (1945) Arango and Martínez 1951
D. Suárez Hoyos The Catholic U. of America (1946) The Catholic 1946 (10)
E. Sudarsky U.N. Bogotá (1948) Illinois Institute of Technology (1950) Aragón and Espinosa 1965
R. Uribe López (Bogotá) Tulane U. (1952) Jambalaya 1952
P. Valenzuela The Catholic U. of America (1944) The Catholic 1946 (10)
H. Vargas Rubiano (1917–2008) U.N. Bogotá (1941) U. of Pennsylvania (1942) Aragón and Espinosa 1965
R. Álvarez U.N. Bogotá (1948) (Spec.) Institut d’art et d’archéologie — Paris Sorbonne Facultad de Arquitectura 1953
E. Caputi U. Pontificia Bolivariana Medellín The Catholic U. of America (1948) Vélez 2010; The Catholic 1948 (12)
D. González Cornell U. (1948) Facultad de Arquitectura 1953
J. Greiffenstein Ospina (Medellín, 1924–?) U. Pontificia Bolivariana Medellín Cornell U. (1947) CPNAA
P. Jiménez (Medellín) The Catholic U. of America (1946) The Catholic 1946 (10)
F. Londoño Cornell U. (1947) Facultad de Arquitectura 1953
Á. Posada (Bogotá) U. of Michigan (1941) Michiganesian 1941
G. Restrepo Álvarez (1905–?) (? hospital architecture) Columbia U. (1938) + U. Pontificia Bolivariana Medellín (1949) Aragón and Espinosa 1965; Bernal, Gallego, and Jaramillo
J. Sierra Rodríguez (Arch. ind.) Columbia U. (1938) Bernal, Gallego, and Jaramillo
L. Uribe U.N. Bogotá (1947) + Brazil [?] + [?] Oxford U. (Urb.) Cranbrook Academy of Art + CINVA (Bogotá) Facultad de Arquitectura 1953
R. Uribe U. U. Pontificia Bolivariana Medellín USA [?] Vélez 2010
H. Wills Isaza U.N. Facultad de Minas + U. Pontificia Bolivariana Medellín Cornell U. (1947) Vélez 2010; Arango et al. 1982
E. Baca Kehrly École des beaux-arts de Paris [before 1946] CPNAA
Á. Calero Tejada Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (1944) Ingeniería y Arquitectura 1944
H. Calero Tejada California [?] Ramírez and Gutiérrez 2000
J. Errázuriz (Chile, ?) Pontificia U. Católica de Chile ACUV
M.J. Lenis Montoya (1910–?) (Eng.) Heald College (1939) U. of Notre Dame (summer course 1964) ACUV
A. Michelsen U. de Chile [before 1940] CPNAA
H. Muñoz (1920–?) Pontificia U. Católica de Chile (1946) CPNAA
M. Turriago de Caycedo (des.) Pratt Institute Conurbanas
J. Zea Colombia [?] (int.) + (Urb.) U. of California Berkeley Blue and Gold Yearbook 1949
M. D’Andreis Lanao U. Pontificia Bolivariana Medellín École des beaux-arts de Paris + (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris Samper 2000
A. Lequerica M. (1926–?) (Eng.) U.N. Bogotá U. of Michigan Aragón and Espinosa 1965
A. Martínez Emiliani (Eng.) École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne Aragón and Espinosa 1965
Unknown city
G. R. Alban U. de Guayaquil [before 1948] CPNAA
L.E. Albornoz U. Catholique de Louvain, Campus Sint-Lucas Ghent [before 1939] CPNAA
L.C. Álvarez [?] (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris (1940) BPS-EUP
P.R. Avendaño Sihera U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1949] CPNAA
A. Bernal Gonella U. de la República Uruguay [before 1939] CPNAA
A. Bertolotto U. degli Studi di Roma [before 1948] CPNAA
C.L. Cadena Escuela de Bellas Artes de Quito [before 1940] CPNAA
A. Maillard Ugarte U. de Chile [before 1948] CPNAA
A. Medina Peñuela U. de Chile [before 1947] CPNAA
J.J. Rodríguez (Bogotá) U. of Florida [after 1948] Tower Seminole 1948
H. Saldarriaga López U. de Chile [before 1947] CPNAA
R. Vélez (Manizales) The Catholic U. of America (1946) The Catholic 1946 (10)
Table 3

Colombian student destinations, 1951–1970.

Name Undergraduate Postgraduate or specialisation Source
J. Acuña (Arch. + painting) Cranbrook Academy of Art RAC-2c
J.C. Acuña Cañas U. of Florida [before 1954] CPNAA
A. Acuña Gómez U. of Virginia in Charlottesville [before 1956] CPNAA
E. Aguilar Carrasquilla U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1955] CPNAA
A.A. Amador (Arch. Eng.) U. of Texas (1960) Cactus 1960
M. Ancízar (Bogotá) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1959
G. Andrade Lleras U. of Florida (1953) (Urb.) Georgia Institute of Technology (1955) Aragón and Espinosa 1965
C. Arbeláez Camacho (1916–69) U.N. Bogotá (1943) (Spec.) School of Planning and Regional Research, London + (Spec.) Ministry for Housing and Local Government, London [1952–53] + (Spec.) Ministère de l’urbanisme, Paris [1952–53] Aragón and Espinosa 1965
R. Bermúdez Santamaría (des.) USA [?] Gómez 2008
T. Bustillo Arrieta U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1953] CPNAA
M.A. Caceres Porras U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1957] CPNAA
J. Cala Gutiérrez U. of Florida [before 1955] CPNAA
D. Castro Duque (1922–?) U.N. Bogotá (1948) U. of Oregon + (Spec.) Bouwcentrum Rotterdam (1959) Samper 2000; Aragón and Espinosa 1965
J. Cepeda Ulloa U.N. Bogotá (interrupted) + U. de Buenos Aires ACHUNC-1954
P. Correa Páez U. of Florida (1952) CPNAA
D. Cortés Osorio (1933–?) Stanford U. Aragón and Espinosa 1965
R. Díaz Díaz U.N. Bogotá (1951) (Spec.) Politecnico di Milano ACHUNC-1953
G.E. Garcés Peña U. Central del Ecuador [before 1955] CPNAA
C. García Reyes (Bogotá) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1953
E. García-Reyes M. (Zaragoza, ES, 1930–?) U.N. Bogotá (1955) Harvard U. (1956) Aragón and Espinosa 1965; ACHUNC-HL
E.M. Gill (des.) U. of Texas (1966) Cactus 1966
I. Gómez (Bogotá) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1957
R. Gómez (Bogotá) [?] (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1959
G. Hoyos [?] (Spec.) Bouwcentrum Rotterdam (1967) Ripoll, conversation with
E. Isaza Palau U. of California Berkeley (1952) Blue and Gold 1952
I. Jacobsen Bache U. de Chile [before 1952] CPNAA
E. Jiménez Lozada (Girardot, 1931) U. de los Andes (1949) U. of Illinois (1954) Universidad de los Andes 2006
Á. Larreamendy U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro Suramericana Editores 1960
D. Llorente U.N. Bogotá (1954) Politecnico di Milano + U. degli Studi di Roma + École des beaux-arts de Paris Aragón and Espinosa 1965
A. López (Bogotá) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1954
A. Maldonado Soto (Bogotá) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1960
C. Mazuera Gómez (1943) École des beaux-arts de Paris Crosnier and Timbert 2015
A. Mendoza Morales U. de Chile [before 1952] CPNAA
J. Mosseri Hané (Bogotá, 1936) U. Javeriana (1959) (Urb.) Paris [?] (1964) Universidad de los Andes 2006
Á. Osuna Sáenz U.N. Bogotá (1956) (Spec. industrial architecture) USA and Mexico Aragón and Espinosa 1965
E. Pombo Leyva U.N. Bogotá (1951) United Nations’ scholarship for research on dwelling in Canada, USA, and Puerto Rico Aragón and Espinosa 1965
A. Ramírez U.N. Bogotá (1954) U. degli Studi di Roma + U. of London Aragón and Espinosa 1965
L.J. Riaño São Paulo [?] [before 1951] Proa 1952b
U. Ripoll Rodríguez U. de los Andes (1957) (Spec.) Eidgenössische technische Hochschule Zürich (1958) + (Spec.) Bouwcentrum Rotterdam (1967) Ripoll, conversation with
F. Rolnik North Carolina State U. Proa 1955a
G. Sicard U.N. Bogotá [after 1954] (ind. des.) Accademia di Architettura Milano + Scuola Statale d’Arte Firenze (1964) Gómez 2008
A. Sokoloff Moreno (1934–?) The Catholic U. of America (1957) Aragón and Espinosa 1965
B. Sokoloff Moreno (1932–?) The Catholic U. of America Aragón and Espinosa 1965
G. Suárez Betancourt Cornell U. [before 1960] CPNAA
G. Téllez U.N. Bogotá U. of Illinois Illio 1954
G. Téllez Castañeda (Bogotá, 1933) U. de los Andes (1955) (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris + (Spec.) Service des Monuments Historiques, Paris (1959–60) Universidad de los Andes 2006
E. Triana (1929–?) U. of Michigan (1953) Aragón and Espinosa 1965
V.I. Urdaneta (Bogotá) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1960
J.J. Vargas Ramírez U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1957] SCA 1957
S. Vargas Rocha Stanford U. (1953) Fríes and Saldarriaga 2001
H. Vieco Sánchez (1924–2012) U.N. Bogotá (1948) (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris (1954) Aragón and Espinosa 1965
G. Yepes (Bogotá) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1960
J. Jaramillo U. Pontificia Bolivariana Medellín (1950) (Spec. in architectural pedagogy) Germany [?] Vélez 2003
V. Mainero U. Pontificia Bolivariana Medellín (1950) (Spec.) Italy [?] UPB 1951 (62)
T. Salcedo U.N. Medellín [before 1951] (Spec. in air conditioning) USA [?] Facultad de Arquitectura 1953
M. Uribe U. Pontificia Bolivariana Medellín (Spec.) Germany [?] Vélez 2003
D.W. Velásquez (Medellín) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1960
G. Ivan Zapata Georgia Institute of Technology (1957) Blueprint Yearbook 1957
J. Aparicio Rodewalt U. of Florida (1953) CPNAA
C.J.E. Avendaño Cass U. Católica de Valparaíso (1961) SCA-Valle
C. Barney Caldas U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro (1961) [active in Brazil] Barney, conversation with
J. Bernal Arango U. Pontificia Bolivariana de Medellín (1950) Cranbrook Academy of Art (1951) + Research Fellowship USA Aragón and Espinosa 1965
A. Botero Gómez The Catholic U. of America (1955) ACUV
H. Botero O’Byrne (Cartagena, 1934–?) [?] (Urb.) Chicago Illinois Feet [?] ACUV
L. Caldas de Borrero (Bogotá, 1929–?) U.N. Bogotá (1953) (Landscape Arch.) U. of Pennsylvania (1961) ACUV
E. Cobo Pratt U. Arts Students League, New York Aragón and Espinosa 1965
J.E. Coronel Arroyo U. degli Studi di Roma (1960) SCA-Valle
H. della Cuesta (Medellín) [?] (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1959
I.R. della Cuesta (Medellín) (Eng.) U.N. Bogotá (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1959
C.S. Escarpetta (Belo Horizonte) U. Federal do Minas Gerais (1963) SCA-Valle
M. de J. Escobar Arana U. of Florida (1957) SCA-Valle
[?] Fajardo [?] (Spec.) Bouwcentrum Rotterdam (1967) Ripoll, conversation with
R. Flórez Espinosa U. de Chile [before 1951] CPNAA
A. Ghitis Blanco (1927–?) (Eng.) U.N. Medellín (1950) + (Eng.) U. de Montréal (1954) ACUV
J.S. Giraldo Jaramillo (1934) U. del Valle (1962) (Spec.) Scuola di Perfezionamento per lo studio dei monumenti Roma (1965) RAC-2a
J. Guerrero (1932–?) U.N. Bogotá (1954) U. degli Studi di Roma + (Spec.) Town Planning Institute London Aragón and Espinosa 1965
F. Hoyos Jiménez [?] Illinois Institute of Technology RAC-1
E. Jordan Sarria Idaho State U. (1957) ACUV
M.C. Lago Franco (1932–?) Cornell U. (1955) U. degli Studi di Roma Samper 2000
A.E. Montoya Moya U. Central del Ecuador (1966) CPNAA
P.P. Morcillo (Arch.) [?] (Spec.) Regional Development Paris RAC-1
F. O’Byrne Barberana (Bogotá, 1932–?) U.N. Bogotá (1956) Georgia Institute of Technology (1958) + (Spec. summer course) Regional Planning Association NY ACUV; Aragón and Espinosa 1965
J.J. Padilla Tascón Atelier Oscar Niemeyer SCA-Valle
E. Patiño Barney U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro (1953) Barney, conversation with
R. Patiño Barney U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro (1958) Barney, conversation with
H.M. Pérez Rodríguez (1934) U. del Valle (1961) (Spec.) Scuola di Perfezionamento per lo studio dei monumenti Roma (1969) RAC-2b
L. Pérez Rodríguez U. del Valle (Spec.) Scuola di Perfezionamento per lo studio dei monumenti Roma (1969) RAC-2b
J.I. Sáenz U. of Notre Dame (1954) Devine 1999
J. Sáenz Caicedo (1932–?) U. of Notre Dame (1954) Devine 1999
F. Toscano Garcial (1929–?) Politecnico di Milano [before 1959] ACUV
E. Umaña Mafla U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro (1951) SCA-Valle
A. Velasco U.N. Bogotá (1953) (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris + (Urb.) U. of Pennsylvania RAC-1
J.H. Velosa U. del Valle Technische Universität Berlin RAC-1
D.C. Viáfara U. del Valle Technische Hochschule München RAC-1
R. Villaquirán Sarasti Illinois Institute of Technology ACUV
L. Yusti de Chatin (Ghent, BE, 1934–?) U. del Valle (1958) (Spec.) prefabbricazione, Ministère des Affaires Etrangères-Ministère des Finances et des Affaires Économiques Coopération Technique and Centre Scientifique et Technique du Bâtiment, Paris (1959–60) ACUV
R. Acosta Madiedo Syracuse U. [before 1954] CPNAA
E. González Rubio Tulane U. + (Eng.) Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Eng.) Georgia Institute of Technology Jambalaya 1944; Bell Lemus 2000
R. Jiménez (Arch. Eng.) U. of Kansas Jayhawker 1951
E. López [Rensselaer?] Polytechnic Institute Bell Lemus 2000
F. Lux (Eng.) U. of Kentucky Bell Lemus 2000
R. Manotas (Eng.) Oklahoma State U. Institute of Technology Bell Lemus 2000
H. Martínez Baena (Arch. Eng.) U. of Houston Bell Lemus 2000
J. Muvdi (Eng.) Harvard U. Bell Lemus 2000
J. Pumarejo C. (Eng.) Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Aragón and Espinosa 1965
W. Restrepo (Eng.) U.N. Medellín Escuela de Minas + Harvard U. Bell Lemus 2000
B. Rosanía Salive (Eng.) Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Cornell U. Aragón and Espinosa 1965
I. Schwartz Syracuse U. (1953) Bell Lemus 2000
C.A. Vargas-Colina U. of Texas (1964) (Urb.) U. of Texas (1965–67) Cactus 1964–65, 1967
J. Kuperman U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro (1951) Proa 1953c
V. Noero (Cartagena) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1960
Unknown city
F. Aguilar Rivero U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1958] CPNAA
J.G. Amezquita Montaño U. Federal do Paraná [before 1965] CPNAA
H. Amezquita Rojas U. Federal de Pernambuco [before 1962] CPNAA
R. Anzola Betancourt Cornell U. [before 1960] CPNAA
A.G. Arango Bonilla U. Nacional de Ingeniería – Perú [before 1964] CPNAA
G. Arango Londoño U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1955] CPNAA
J.M. Arboleda Duque Hochschule [?] [before 1960] CPNAA
R. Arboleda Walaby Worcester Polytechnic Institute [before 1966] CPNAA
F.R. Ardilla Plata Heald College – San Francisco [before 1965] CPNAA
L.E. Arocha Osorio Tulane U. (1955) + U. of Louisiana [before 1957] Jambalaya 1955; CPNAA
J. Arrazola Madrid U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1962] CPNAA
D. Avella Bolívar (Sogamoso) (Arch. Eng.) U. of Miami [before 1955] CPNAA; Ibis 1954
Á. Ávila-Bernal [?] (Urb.) Institut d’urbanisme de l’U. de Paris (1968) BPS-EUP
A. Ávila Ordoñez U. of Louisville [before 1965] CPNAA
L.C. Avlian (Bogotá) U. of Florida (1962) Tower Seminole 1962
J. Ayarza (Bogotá) (Arch. Eng.) U. of Miami (1954) Ibis 1954
J.A. Barreto George Washington U. [before 1966] CPNAA
S.R. Barrios Pacheco U. Federal do Rio Grande do Sul [before 1967] CPNAA
C.H. Bernal Ocampo U. Central del Ecuador [before 1962] CPNAA
G. Botero Jaramillo The Catholic U. of America [before 1957] CPNAA
R. Bucheli Cadena U. Central del Ecuador [before 1964] CPNAA
R. Bucheli Córdovez U. de la República Uruguay [before 1959] CPNAA
C. Buenaver Villamizar U. of Pennsylvania [before 1959] CPNAA
H. Cabal Paredes U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1964] CPNAA
G. Cabrera García U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1960] CPNAA
H. Caliz Mercado U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1968] CPNAA
A. Carrizosa (Bucaramanga) [?] (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1959
G. Cuervo Gutiérrez U.N. Bogotá (int.) + U. de Chile (5th year) [before 1958] CPNAA; ACHUNC-1953
J.R. Devivero (Bolívar) (Arch. Eng.) U. of Miami (1955) Ibis 1955
C. Díaz Carretero U. Central de Venezuela [before 1967] CPNAA
J. Emiro Rivera U. Central del Ecuador [before 1957] CPNAA
E. Eraso Moreno U. Central del Ecuador [before 1966] CPNAA
L.C. Escobar (Cali) (Eng.) Georgia Institute of Technology (1952) Blueprint 1952
L.E. Fajardo Moreno U. Federal do Minas Gerais [before 1967] CPNAA
E. Fajardo Romero U. Federal do Rio Grande do Sul [before 1963] CPNAA
H. Flórez Álvarez U. Federal do Rio de Janeiro [before 1951] Flórez and Riaño 1951
G. García (Pereira) (Eng.) U.N. Bogotá + (Eng.) U. of Michigan (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1956
J.E. Gómez López U. Central del Ecuador [before 1960] CPNAA
M. González Zapata (Cali) (Arch. Eng.) U. of Miami (1960) Ibis 1960
L.O. Guerrero Gómez U. Central del Ecuador [before 1957] CPNAA
A. Hurtado Alarcón U. de Chile [before 1952] CPNAA
A.P. Lanzani de Toscano Politecnico di Milano [before 1961] CPNAA
E.A. Lebolo Castellanos (Barranquilla) U. of Florida [before 1964] CPNAA; Tower Seminole 1963
D. Levy-Lombroso (Barranquilla) (Eng.) U. del Atlántico + (Eng.) U.N. Bogotá + (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1956
J.H. Llanos (Buga) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1955
E. López (Pacho, Col.) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1954
Z. Medina López (Tunja) (Arch. Eng.) U. of Texas (1954) Cactus 1954
C.J. Morelli (Cúcuta) (Eng.) U.N. Bogotá (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1954
J.F. Moreno Mesias U. Central del Ecuador [before 1966] CPNAA
C. Noguera (Bogotá) U. of Miami (1964) Ibis 1964
M.A. Ocampo Peña U. Central del Ecuador [before 1965] CPNAA
G. Olano (Cali) (Arch. Eng.) U. of Miami (1954) Ibis 1954
J.G. Ospina Salamanca U. Central del Ecuador [before 1967] CPNAA
L.H. Pachón Parra U. de Chile [before 1962] CPNAA
J.A. Pinilla Alcalá U. Autonoma del Estado de México [before 1967] CPNAA
O. Piñeiro Ríos U. de Chile [before 1959] CPNAA
V. Prieto (Villavicencio) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1960
L. Quezada Pastene U. de Chile [before 1954] CPNAA
E. Richardson Saravia U. Central de Venezuela [before 1961] CPNAA
C.A. Rojas Cifuentes U. de Chile [before 1960] CPNAA
L. Rojas C. (Eng.) U. of Colorado (1952) Coloradan 1952
J.M. Romero (Riohacha) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois (1955) Illio 1955
A. Santander Nevarez U. Central del Ecuador [before 1965] CPNAA
M.V. Suárez Buitrago U.N. Bogotá (int.) + U. de Chile [before 1958] CPNAA; ACHUNC-1953
L.F. Suárez Williamson The Catholic U. of America [before 1960] CPNAA
R. Vargas (San Andrés) (Eng.) U. de los Andes (Eng.) U. of Illinois Illio 1957
C.E. Viviescas Pinzón U. Federal do Rio Grande do Sul [before 1958] CPNAA
M.M. Wanderley de Vargas U. Federal de Pernambuco [before 1968] CPNAA


  1. Translations by the author unless otherwise noted. [^]
  2. Silvia Arango mentions that within the limited dimension of the architects’ professional group in the 1940s only a few studied abroad; however, she recognises the lack of information about the issue (Arango 1984: 16). [^]
  3. The definition of these geographies on the basis of national categories may appear questionable, as the existence of typically transnational networks such as the Beaux-Arts academic system proves. However, here nations are used as a first and intuitive category, either referring to particular institutions related to specific academic or professional milieus or to groups of architects, which may share nationality or place of activity, but never presuming the existence of any national architectural identity. [^]
  4. As studies in architecture may take up to five years, clearly it is tricky to fix chronological watersheds to describe trends and gradual changes (for the tables, graduation date is used as the term of reference). As for periodisation, 1936 is considered a turning point for both endogenous factors (the foundation of Colombia’s first architecture faculty) and exogenous (the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War and a rapidly deteriorating European situation), while 1950 approximates the closing of the transitional phase of Colombian modernism (1930–40s) leading to its ‘golden age’, according to most architectural historians (with different shades, see Arango 1989; Samper 2000). A closing date of 1970 serves to elucidate 1960s trends. [^]
  5. Finally, civil engineers are displayed in the tables but not counted in the maps. In general, most listed engineers are either prominent in construction or illustrate specific networks, as in the case of the Universidad de los Andes and the University of Illinois. [^]
  6. This article moves beyond certain historiographic patterns, distancing itself from the unifying tendency initiated by Hitchcock (1955) and later endorsed by Bullrich (1969). On the difference between the two interpretations see Torrent (2015). At the same time, this text moves away from the regionalist rhetoric that arose in Latin America according to the categories of ‘appropriateness’ (Fernández 1987) and ‘otherness’ (Browne 1988) after Frampton’s introduction of ‘critical regionalism’ in the architectural debate (1983). [^]
  7. A type of source increasingly analysed in the last two decades (see Gutiérrez 1995; Gutiérrez et al. 2001; Aguirre 2013; for Colombia see Mondragón 2008). [^]
  8. These accounts sometimes seem to contradict the image recounted in most literature about the teaching environment of certain schools. Nevertheless, they appear as useful complementary sources in the understanding of student experiences abroad. [^]
  9. At least two school works designed by Colombian students abroad were also published in Ingeniería y Arquitectura. Regrettably, securing permission to reproduce these works is extremely difficult nowadays — this and other journals having already disappeared, and the authors are unreachable. Another fundamental source on the architectural production of the 1950–60s is represented by a couple of anthologies published at the time: Lo mejor del urbanismo y de la arquitectura en Colombia and Moderna Bogotá arquitectónica. [^]
  10. To name a few: Julio Casanovas and Raúl Mannheim (Chilean), Victor Schmidt (Swiss), Herbert Raupricht, Erich Lange, and Ernst Blumenthal (German), Urbanist Karl Brunner (Austrian) and Vicente Nasi (Italian) in Bogotá; Alberto Dotheé and Augustine Goovaerts (Belgian) in Medellín; Manuel Carrerá (Cuban) in Barranquilla. [^]
  11. Up to the 1940s most Colombian architects came from an inner circle, as Carlos Rueda (2012: 51) noted: Obregón, Pizano, Sáenz, Samper, and Urdaneta were all typical surnames of traditional well-known families. [^]
  12. As Frédéric Martínez underlines, due to the high costs involved, disciplines studied abroad were commonly those providing good professional perspectives. [^]
  13. Of the 26 professors, 11 graduated in Europe and one in the USA. [^]
  14. Although his reputed internship at 35, Rue de Sèvres (referred to in many bibliographic sources) appears untrue. FLC, S1–3 Atelier Le Corbusier, Demandes d’emplois ou de stages refusées, 1937. [^]
  15. The same could also be said in comparison with other Latin American schools, with the exception of Montevideo where, by the 1930s, the faculty of architecture and urban planning represented an extremely advanced reality, as Violich (1944: 166–67) noted. But its avant-garde disappeared from international historiography due to its distance from the International Style canons (Arango 2012: 271–72). [^]
  16. A project by Álvaro Calero Tejada awarded at the Rensselaer was published in Ingeniería y Arquitectura (1944). [^]
  17. The first one had been the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1865, followed by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1868, Cornell University in 1871, and Syracuse in 1873. [^]
  18. Before Harvard, Solano and Mejía completed graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania. [^]
  19. Sert started teaching at Yale in 1944, when Gaitán graduated. His and Wiener’s later appointment for the masterplan of the Colombian city of Tumaco (see Tarchópulos 2010) may have been a direct consequence of their acquaintance during the year. [^]
  20. Colombia and the US became particularly close during Eduardo Santos’ government (1938–42), and when López led the country into World War II on the Allies’ side in 1943 (see Randall 1992). Post-war, key events included the launch of the so-called Currie Mission of the World Bank and of the Organization of American States — with Colombian Alberto Lleras Camargo as General Secretary — which in 1951 established the Centro Interamericano de Vivienda y Planeamiento in Bogotá (led by Harvard-trained architect Leonard J. Currie) as part of its technical programmes. In 1961, J. F. Kennedy launched the Alliance for Progress that financed the construction of the so-called Ciudad Kennedy in Bogotá, one of the largest public housing interventions in the city. [^]
  21. Information on the Rockefeller Foundation contribution to the faculty of architecture of the Universidad del Valle can be found in RAC-1. [^]
  22. All this information is inferred from the faculty correspondence that is kept at the ACHUNC. [^]
  23. E. Mejía, Report on new study plan, 1948 (ACHUNC-1948: ff. 379–80). [^]
  24. A few years later, the broadest panoramic on Colombian architecture so far recorded was published on the same magazine just when Hernán Vieco, who had studied in Paris and worked there for Bernard Zehrfuss on the UNESCO building, was returning to Colombia and becoming a correspondent for the journal (see AA 1958b). [^]
  25. Pinzón succeeded to Eduardo Mejía as dean of the faculty in 1952. [^]
  26. Letter, H. Pinzón Isaza to UNC dean L. López de Mesa, June 10, 1948 (ACHUNC-1948: ff. 392–96). [^]
  27. Report, H. Pinzón Isaza, 1949 (ACHUNC-1949: ff. 520–31). [^]
  28. Report, H. Pinzón Isaza, 1949 (ACHUNC-1949: ff. 520–31). [^]
  29. Arquitectura Inglesa was the title of the photographic exhibition according to the items list (ACHUNC-1946: ff. 412–17). [^]
  30. Enrique Sudarsky, an Argentinian educated at the UNC in Bogotá and then at the IIT, designed, with his partner, several apartment and office buildings wrapped by a curtain wall with black and white panels in a clear Miesian fashion (see Suramericana Editores 1960: 166–68). [^]
  31. During his first stay in the US, Arango not only met Breuer, marrying his sister-in-law, but also many architects with a strong interest in furniture design, such as Eero Saarinen and the Eames (Arango 2003). [^]
  32. Breuer spent four weeks in Bogotá in October 1947 after an invitation by Solano and Ortega to work as consultant for the Ministry of Public Works, advising on various projects, including the central market. From then on, Breuer remained in touch with his Colombian friends, hoping to get the masterplan commission. Nonetheless, as Ortega wrote to the Hungarian, ‘Corbusier, Wiener and Sert, their friends and admirers finally got for them the so-talked about, masterplan of Bogota. After a year and a half of intrigue, or shall we say diplomacy, they, at least, have reached their goal. I wonder how this peculiar team is going to work’ (MBDA-1). [^]
  33. By issue 47, many architects’ projects are featured, some well known (Niemeyer and the Roberto brothers), others less so (Mauro Esteves and Hilda Maia, Paulo Antunes Ribeiro, Almir Gadelha and Acácio Gil Borsoi, Alcides da Rocha Miranda and José de Souza Reis). [^]
  34. For a more comprehensive outlook on the faculty environment in terms of staff and design culture, see the Anuario da Faculdade Nacional de Arquitetura da Universidade do Brasil, published between 1958 and 1964. [^]
  35. The process of knowledge transfer in the restoration field in Colombia is still unexplored. Certain experiences seem crucial for the introduction of a modern restoration praxis, such as those of José Luis Giraldo Jaramillo, who under a Rockefeller Foundation grant moved from the Universidad del Valle in Cali to Rome for a two-year course at the Scuola di Specializzazione per lo Studio ed il Restauro dei Monumenti (Fig. 9). The Rockefeller Foundation itself (in an internal memo) recognised the Universidad del Valle’s leading role in preserving the colonial urban fabric in Colombia, mostly due to Giraldo’s activity (information from Rac-2a and a conversation with JL Giraldo. For general information on restoration in Colombia, see Niglio 2016). [^]
  36. According to Urbano Ripoll Rodríguez, at least four Colombians studied with him in Rotterdam in 1967. (Only those whose names have been identified are included in tables.) He also mentions the existence of a local office of the Bouwcentrum in Bogotá during these years (Ripoll, conversation with). [^]
  37. The generic concept of ‘influence’ has been commonly used in Colombian historiography without deepening its meaning. Here, one of the key points has been addressing through which paths, and to what extent, theories, imaginaries, and experimentations related to the work of these masters entered the architectural discourse, enriched formal repertoires, and produced innovations in Colombia. [^]
  38. Liernur’s critique appears addressed to the mainstream regionalist construction primarily fostered by Colombian historians Silvia Arango and Germán Téllez during the 1990s and generally endorsed by Latin American scholars. [^]
  39. The word ‘connected’ purposely recalls Sanjay Subrahmanyam’s approach to historical research (2005). [^]

Competing Interests

The author has no competing interests to declare.


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