A daily blog on architecture in Chicago, and other topics cultural, political and mineral.
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Thursday, October 04, 2007
Influential critic Herbert Muschamp dies at 59
Word came today that former New York Times architecture critic Herbert Muschamp has died, from lung cancer, at age 59. He was a master at vibrant, incisive, and sometimes gloriously over-the-top prose that placed the beating heart of contemporary architecture within the broader streams of contemporary culture. Even if I didn't always agree with his conclusions, I loved his passion. I'll never forget how several years ago, out of the blue, this obscure, fledgling writer received an e-mail from him with kind and encouraging words about my work. Read the New York Times obituary here, and, via Archinect and the Gawker, the text of an internal memo marking his passing here.
(Click on time for permalink) 12:01 AM
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I'll admit that this guy was an entertaining writer. I also heard him speak at a forum at the Art Institute about five years ago. He made a lot of great observations about Chicago.
He was wrong about some things, including his support for the Soldier Field remake. He was also wrong his praise for the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago. I feel that the ugly, boring MCA is one of the greatest missed opportunities for modern architecture in Chicago history.
Anyway, I am glad that I got to see Muschamp in person.
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