Day: August 7, 2014

Cloister Walk

A jewel on the prairie

Some of the most amazing finds on the road occur in the most unlikely places. When my colleague Jenny Buddenborg learned I was traveling cross-country with Claire – and taking in North Dakota in the process – she directed me to one of America’s hidden gems:  a college campus in Bismarck, North Dakota designed by Marcel Breuer, one of the masters of Modernism. The University of Mary is a small, Catholic school located on rolling hills about 7 miles outside of Bismarck. The university’s website picks up the story from here: In the 1950’s, when the Benedictine Sisters of the Annunciation founded their original priory and later planned for the first campus buildings for Mary College, they asked Breuer if he would create the architectural designs. To their delight he accepted and conceived expansive structures of native prairie stone and exquisite concrete shapes, notable for their interplay of light and shadow. Breuer called it his “jewel on the prairie.”  After an hour touring the campus this morning, I wouldn’t disagree. Thanks to Jenny and the …