Thursday, December 02, 2004

Gehry Buildings Are Not Just Ugly To Look Out 

They are structurally unsound also. Turns out that the latest creation in Los Angeles is going to have to be sandblasted to rid it of some unpleasant glare from the sun. Other problems, as reported today by Robin Pogrebin of the New York Times, include:

His $62 million swirly building for the business school at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland has been likened to a tanning mirror and sent snow and ice sliding off the sloping stainless-steel roof onto the heads of pedestrians below.

The wood floor in Mr. Gehry's Cond´┐Ż Nast cafeteria in New York was replaced with terrazzo two years ago because it was a hazard to high-heeled shoes.

Three years after Mr. Gehry's celebrated Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain, opened in 1997, brown stains on the titanium exterior provoked embarrassment and finger-pointing. Mr. Gehry said at the time that it was simply a matter of cleaning.

A 75-foot copper-clad trellis, the signature element on a plant Mr. Gehry designed for the furniture maker Herman Miller in Rocklin, Calif., was torn down in the late 1990's because of a leak. Mr. Gehry insisted the flaw was in the execution and not in his design.

By the way, I just returned from Chicago where I saw up close Mr. Gehry's out door amphitheater. It really is as unattractive as pictured below.

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