New York

Michael Rakowitz

Lombard-Fried Projects

Architectural modernism is often said to have breathed its last with the dynamiting of the Pruitt-Igoe housing project in Saint Louis. Constructed in the 1950s as a monument to shared space and racial integration, Minoru Yamasaki’s Corbusier-like vision of a utopian urban community deteriorated into a vast slum and was knocked down in 1972. This front-page event was attended by a transfixed mob (including many former Pruitt-Igoe residents) that reportedly let out a dull roar as the buildings fell—and it is this spectacle of collective catharsis, more than the simple fact of the buildings’ demise, that drives the drawings and sculptures in Michael Rakowitz’s New York solo debut.

The pencil drawings here outline a set of parallel events with the compelling complexity of a conspiracy theory. In one that forms part of the installation Dull Roar (all works 2005), Rakowitz re-sites the falling

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