Samuel Medina

  • Zoe Zenghelis (Office for Metropolitan Architecture), The Egg of Columbus Centre, 1973, acrylic on card, 17 3⁄8 × 20 7⁄8".

    Paradise City

    Near the bottom of The Egg of Columbus Centre, 1973, a painting by Zoe Zenghelis, the cerulean slab of the United Nations Secretariat Building in New York comes face-to-face with an impish impostor and blanches. At the top of the frame, a cluster of gilded Arkhitektons synthesizes Malevich and Trump, as if to prefigure the luxury hotel the latter had hoped to impose on perestroika-era Moscow. Down First Avenue, a sprawling megastructure reminiscent of a ’60s Spanish casino hopscotches across the marmoreal plinths that have begun to supplant Manhattan’s blocks. Clambering amphibious volumes

  • Mies van der Rohe, Mansion House Square, Unbuilt design.
    architecture August 28, 2017

    London Calling

    THERE ARE TWO JUBILANT MOMENTS in “Mies van der Rohe + James Stirling: Circling the Square” at the Royal Incorporation of British Architects’ (RIBA) Architecture Gallery in London, but they are easy to miss, even in a show as small as this one. Both pertain to Mies’s plans in the 1960s to erect a nineteen-story office high-rise on a central site in the City of London, and both are represented by ephemera that suggest the slow rise and precipitous fall of the ill-fated project.

    The first piece is a quick sketch of an inverted pyramid of champagne glasses, made by the architect’s grandson Dirk