Yona Friedman. The Dilution of Architecture

Yona Friedman. The Dilution of Architecture

A visionary oeuvre re-discovered: Yona Friedman, Hungarian-French architect, urbanist, theoretician, and artist.



Title Information

Yona Friedman, Manuel Orazi. Edited by Nader Seraj

1st edition

, 2015


582 pages, 578 color and 183 b/w (monochrome) illustrations

17 x 24 cm

ISBN 978-3-906027-68-5

In cooperation with Archizoom – EPFL, Lausanne


Yona Friedman was recognized as one of the most eminent proponents of 1960s avant-garde urbanism. His best-known work is the concept for a Spatial City (“La Ville Spatiale”, 1956), in which he aimed to provide maximum flexibility through “megastructures” over existing cities and other locations. Inhabitants were meant design their dwellings within these structures. Friedman sought to provide people in every part of the world with the knowledge and fundamental structures to determine their own environment for living and to enhance their independence and self-reliance.

This new book offers a unique collection of brief texts and annotations as well as an abundance of images, sketches, drawings, watercolors etc. by Friedman himself. It also features a vast range of documents related to his work. In part II, Manuel Orazi gives an analysis of Friedman’s oeuvre, based on extensive research. He follows the architect’s progress through disciplinary and geographic areas apparently remote from one another, in which Friedman has been moving erratically and incessantly. Orazi also expands on historical, social and political contexts. A documentation of Friedman’s intellectual relationships and other resources, an interview with Swiss architect Bernard Tschumi about Friedman, and a comprehensive bibliography round out the book.


Authors & Editors

Yona Friedman

 (1923-2020), studied architecture in Budapest. After having escaped capture and deportation from Hungary by the Nazis during World War II, he lived in Israel for nearly ten years where he completed his education at Technion – Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, and also worked as a builder to earn his living. From 1957 until his death in 2020 he lived and worked in Paris.

Manuel Orazi

 completed his PhD in history of architecture at Ca’Foscari University of Venice in 2007. He is an editor with Quodlibet publishers in Macerata and teaches theory and history of contemporary architecture at the universities of Bologna and Ferrara. He also regularly contributes to books and magazines.

Nader Seraj

 is an architect-researcher based in Geneva. He studied at the Academy of Architecture in Mendrisio, the Architectural Association in London, and the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya in Barcelona. He curated the exhibition Yona Friedman: Genesis of a Vision at EPFL’s Archizoom gallery in 2012.

Cyril Veillon

 graduated in arts at Université Paris 8 in St. Denis in 1996. He has been appointed director of Archizoom gallery at Ecole Polythéchnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) in 2008.