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Old Posted Jul 31, 2014, 3:35 PM
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M II A II R II K M II A II R II K is online now
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‘Starchitects’ Aren’t the Problem, Architecture Is

‘Starchitects’ Aren’t the Problem, Architecture Is

JULY 29, 2014

By Allison Arieff

Read More: http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate...chitecuture-is


While there’s no question that there are a lot of terrible buildings emerging across the globe, we can’t place the blame for that on a handful of international superstars.

- For one, there’s no skyscraper without a client – who presumably has presented a program to his architect that asked for impossible heights and singular architectural moves. Second, Rybczynki’s framing of a small handful of architects as a ruinous cabal ascribes to a pretty outdated idea of the architect as a solitary genius.

- Architecture doesn’t really work that way anymore, if it ever did. The number of people involved on projects of this scale is staggering and runs the gamut from facade consultants to finance guys. The collective actions of these inextricably intertwined groups determine the end result, whether the name at the top is Frank Gehry, Rem Koolhaas or Zaha Hadid.

- Further, Rybczynki's argument about “locatecture” is very nostalgic and not reflective of the global realities of the last several decades. It’s nearly impossible to define a “local” architect anymore. Communities of architects exist within -- but also far beyond -- local boundaries.

- Focusing on the "starchitect" misses a more important point: Are buildings being designed as unique sculptural objects or do they work symbiotically with what surrounds them? --- I agree with Rybczynki that there is not enough attention paid to how a building works within a neighborhood. That, however, tends to be a problem for architecture generally. While we’re going through what I think it’s fair to say is a wacky building phase, I can be more tolerant of that if architects are concerning themselves with how their buildings meet the street.

- The people who inhabit a city, who walk its streets — they’re deserving of buildings that create vibrant streets for walking and interacting, enhancements that are welcoming. If this happens, and if everyone can get over their ridiculous obsessions with being the tallest and/or most eccentric, I’m fine with more Gherkins and Shards.


The Franchising of Architecture - By WITOLD RYBCZYNSKI:


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Old Posted Aug 12, 2014, 3:20 AM
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pdxstreetcar pdxstreetcar is offline
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heres another question, what would architecture critics like arieff do without starchitects? its a perpetual cycle of starchitects feeding architecture critics and critics feeding starchitects
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Old Posted Aug 12, 2014, 3:50 AM
Jasonhouse Jasonhouse is online now
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^Which is why we (The Internet Commentariat™) exist to bash both and knock them down to size.
"Imagination is more important than knowledge".
Albert Einstein
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Old Posted Oct 24, 2014, 4:15 PM
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mdiederi mdiederi is offline
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Frank Gehry Gives Spanish Critics the Finger

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