CRITICAL REVIEW


Architect Mihail Caffé designed numerous studies for standard housing within IPCT, in a period when Romania was ruled by a policy focusing mainly on the construction of social housing. Although the trends of the time aimed to minimize the living space, IPCT succeeded in designing functional housing with a very small surface area. In addition to these studies, the architect designed four nursing homes for the elderly, for the Jewish community. After 1990, he designed many villas in a modern, contemporary style. Architecture professor Mihail Caffé had a remarkable teaching experience stretching over six decades, as tenured professor, head of architectural design studio work, as well as diploma and doctoral degree supervisor. For the work carried out in the fields of design, publishing and teaching, for his entire career, he received the ’’Opera Omnia” Prize of the Bucharest Architecture Annual (2000).
(Mariana Croitoru, 2017)
 


BIOGRAPHY


(Țintea, near Ploiești, 31 August 1924 - Bucharest, 27 October 2016)
 
Academic/specialized studies
1942-1944 - M. Onescu College for Jewish Students, M. H. Maxy’s painting class.
1944-1950 – The Superior School of Architecture, graduating in 1951.
1963 – He received the title of Doctor of Architecture.
 
Public/professional activity (affiliations, administrative positions, committees)
1953-2005 – University professor, design, diploma and doctoral degree supervisor, ’’Ion Mincu” Architecture Institute, Bucharest.
2005-2013 - Professor within ’’Spiru Haret” University, Faculty of Arhitecture, Bucharest.
 
Scientific activity
1959-1970 – At IPCT (Institute for Standard Construction), he carried out many studies regarding ’’Standard housing behaviour.’’
1965 - P+9 studio apartment buildings (project done in collaboration with Arch. Gh. Negreanu, V. Petrovici and others).
1966-1970 – Housing construction orientation (project done in collaboration with Arch. T. Niga, Al. Florian, M. Laurian, W. Juster, and others).
1975-1990 – Standardized project development.
1978 - Modulation and sizing of housing elements (project done in collaboration with Arch. M. Alifanti, A. Florian, D. Hardt, C. Niculiu, M. Cocheci, F. Colpacci, R. Simiraş).
 


PROJECTS


COMPLETED/INCOMPLETE PROJECTS

Architectural projects
1956-1970 – He worked for the Design Institute for Standard Construction (IPCT), where he designed plans for P+1, P+4, P+8-10 housing types (around 20 series);
1965 - P+9 studio apartment buildings (standard project);
1966-1970 – He wrote studies about housing construction orientation;
1975-1985 – Nursing homes for the elderly on Sevastopol Street, Jimboliei Street and Ghica Tei Street, Bucharest (projects done in collaboration with Arch. D. Hardt);
1986 – Holocaust Memorial;
1993 – Villa on Primăverii Street, Bucharest;
1996 – Office and residential buildings, 42-44 Vasile Lascăr Street and 5 General Praporgescu Street, Bucharest;
1998 – Villa on Jean Monet Street, Bucharest;
2003 – Villa at 11 Verdi Street, Bucharest;
2002 – Villa in Predeluţ, Bran;
2009 – Villa in Brașov.
 
Awards and distinctions
2000 -’’Opera Omnia” Prize of the Bucharest Architecture Annual, for the work carried out in the fields of design, publishing and teaching, for his entire career.
2004 - Officer of the Order of Cultural Merit.
1965 – Prize awarded by CSCAS for the P+9 studio apartment buildings project (standard projects).
1975 - Honourable Mention (Housing construction orientation in the 1966-1970 stage – research study)
1978 - Prize awarded by UAR for Modulation and sizing of housing elements (research study done in collaboration with Arch. M. Alifanti, A Florian, D. Hardt, and others).
1987 - UAR Honourable Mention for the publication Locuinţa contemporană.
 
Editorial activity
Numerous articles on the topic of housing, published in Arhitectura magazine.
CAFFÉ, Albert Mihail, Arhitectul Ion Mincu, Sigma Galerie, 1960.
CAFFÉ, Albert Mihail, Arhitectura litoralului, 1962.
CAFFÉ, Albert Mihail, Arhitectura în România, album, 1964.
CAFFÉ, Albert Mihail, Pier Luigi Nervi, 1975.
CAFFÉ, Albert Mihail, Ion Mincu, 1975.
Dicţionar de arhitectură şi construcţii (collaboration for architectural terms, 1980-1982).
Locuinţa contemporană. Probleme și puncte de vedere (1987, in collaboration with Arch. P. Derer, Al. Florian, C. Iurov, Gh. Sebestyen).
 


BIBLIOGRAPHY


Information from Mariana Croitoru’s archives, courtesy of Arch. Albert Mihail Caffé (2013).