Visionary Danish architect Jorn Utzon was just thirty-eight years old when in 1957 he was named the surprise winner of an international competition to design the Sydney Opera House in Australia. His bold design consisting of five performance halls topped by billowing concrete shells clad in ceramic tile is universally recognized as a masterpiece of twentieth-century architecture. While this early triumph brought Utzon worldwide fame, it overshadowed a larger body of work of great importance for modern architecture. Utzon's highly diverse projects around the globe, from the National Assembly in Kuwait and Melli Bank in Tehran, Iran, to the Bagsvaerd Church and numerous houses in Denmark, are testaments to his belief that modernism need not sacrifice local character to be forward thinking. Organized into six thematic chapters--place, working method, building culture, construction, materiality, and living--Jorn Utzon presents all of his important work as well as many of his lesser-known, though equally important competition entries, furniture designs, and other built projects
Michael Asgaard Andersen is an architect and professor who practices in both Denmark and the United States. He has written extensively on Nordic architecture.