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Elizabeth (Lisl) Close (1912-2011): A Pioneer of Modern Architecture

Elizabeth (Lisl) Close, a pioneering woman in the field of modern architecture, would have celebrated her 100th birthday today. She died of pneumonia in November 2011. Close developed an interest in architecture that took her from the University of Vienna to MIT in the 1930's, where she received both a B.Arch and M.Arch degree. She and her husband, Winston Close (B.Arch '27), established their firm, Close Associates, in Minneapolis in 1938, which became known for its modernist approach to design. She designed some of the first modern houses to be built in the Twin Cities and left her mark on the University of Minnesota, designing the music school as well as laying out the West Bank, Duluth and Waseca campuses….

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