Monday, March 21, 2005

brief thoughts - renzo piano at lacma

a few years ago I went to the gehry retrospective at the guggenheim - twice. not because I loved the show - because I wanted to be sure it was as bad as I thought it was the first time. just needed to be sure. a show composed almost entirely of coffee-stained models, arranged chronologically, with the proposed new guggenheim (since shelved after 9/11) as the centerpiece of an already self-congratulatory show.

a few weeks later, the mies show at the moma. ok - this was a little better. models, photographs, interactive displays, recreations of the barcelona pavilion, a window looking out on the apartment mies lived in when he worked in ny. saw that show again in london at the whitechapel gallery (sans window). came much closer to making architecture accessible to those of us who aren't practitioners.

been to quite a few architecture exhibitions in the past few months - the libeskind in london, multiple ones at the schindler house, others. I write this not to brag about my museum-going credentials. just to illustrate that I'm a fan with no formal training. which brings me to the renzo piano exhibition at lacma open now until Oct.

I thought it was one of the best architecture exhibits I've been to. there seems to be a deliberate effort to only feature built works, as opposed to so many architecture shows that feature unbuilt proposals. no virtual here, no unbuilt, no proposed projects - other than a separate room for the future lacma building.

the show is engaging, beautiful, incredibly well curated in terms of layout. truly one of the better shows I've gone to. if you have some time in the next 6 months, go.


At 4:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw that Gehry show too. I still waste time explaining it to friends. The display was pathetic. I work for a small real estate development company and spend lots of time with architects, so I have some insight into the design process. Gehry's crumpled piles of paper were supremely uninspired. I think much less of him after seeing the show.

At 4:55 PM, Blogger marissa said...

I blame the guggenheim's curators more than gehry. they just mounted a pathetic show. go to the renzo show if you're in LA to see the contrast. its such a startingly well curated, well displayed show.


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