Mid-Century Modern Midland (MCMM), a project of the Alden B. Dow Home and Studio, has been recognized by Docomomo US, as one of 10 winners of the 2019 Modernism in America Awards. The MCMM’s project to document and share Midland’s unique contribution to the Mid-Century Modern movement was awarded a Citation of Merit in the Survey and Inventory category.MCMM undertook an expansive project in 2017 to identify, document, evaluate, and share Midland Michigan’s unique architectural heritage. The fruits of this labor, much of which was volunteer-based, was made available to the public in 2019 through a well-designed website and mobile app.
The 2019 Docomomo Jury proclaimed the work of MCMM, “A model project that could and should be replicated elsewhere.”
“This was definitely a team project. None of this would have been possible without the help of more than 30 volunteers who literally hit the streets and canvassed every structure within the city limits,” stated Carol Neff, Coordinator of MCMM.
The information collected by the volunteers was then verified by a review committee before being cataloged in a website database created by DC Tree, LLC. The mobile app provides another avenue to the information in the database. It also includes a routing feature which allows users to customize tours. This component was created through a partnership with the University of Michigan’s Department of Industrial Operation Engineering, Practicum in Production and Service System Class.
Craig McDonald, Director of the Alden B. Dow Home and Studio commented, “We are thrilled that the architectural heritage of Midland is being recognized and celebrated by this award. This award assists us in achieving the recognition deserved by the architects, designer and craftsmen who created these amazing structures. Carol Neff’s coordination of our volunteers and project partners in addition to hundreds of hours of research and verification of information was paramount to the success of this project.”Representatives of MCMM will be attending the Modernism in America Awards ceremony which will take place Wednesday, June 19, 2019 in New York City.
Docomomo US, a committee of Docomomo International, is dedicated to the preservation of modern architecture, landscape and design. Through advocacy, education and documentation, they provide leadership and knowledge by demonstrating the importance of modern design principles including the social context, technical merits, aesthetics and settings of these important pieces of American history.