new-york

Frank Gehry

Whitney Museum / Leo Castelli Gallery

This summer people could see work from Frank Gehry’s diverse and prolific architectural career in two major New York museums. Squeezed into a limiting and dubious classification at MoMA, Gehry’s work was better seen in the Whitney retrospective (which originated at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis); it provided an open landscape for examining the work of this protean innovator of architectural form—and thinking. Gehry’s restless manipulation of space, his delight in banal materials, his strong sense of collage and improvisational receptivity are, of course, remarkable and often remarked on. But this innovator is also a classicist who is inspired by humanistic ideals, by the dialogue between enduring and transient form, and by the challenging qualities of architecture as the most ubiquitous and, at times, quixotic cultural record. There is a complex harmony in Gehry’s tough juxtapositions,

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