Tigerman, extracted | Bleader

Tigerman, extracted


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As noted in my story from last week, the 25 essays in architect Stanley Tigerman’s book Schlepping Through Ambivalence were just published by Yale University Press—but they weren't just written. They represent nearly a half century of what Tigerman calls his “bewildering ruminations.” Among them, a string of biting rants about the lock Mies van der Rohe’s disciples had on Chicago architecture for a big chunk of the 20th century. Yale dean and starchitect Robert A.M Stern has called Tigerman "a mensch," but he's a mensch in wolf's clothing.

Here's video of Stern's introduction and Tigerman's lecture at the Yale opening of a Tigerman retrospective coming to the Graham Foundation January 27:

And here (extracted from a context that includes the likes of "Architectural Meaning in Hebraic Measurement and Orientation" and "The Grid as an Instrument of Accessibility") are a few Tigermanisms.

Stanley Tigerman on Mies: "an authentic original"

Mies's followers: “intellectually and morally corrupt.”

Mies's worst advice: “Build, don’t talk.”

Mies’s grandson: “looking as if he were the grandson of Walter Gropius.”

Windows, before Mies: “small…view-focused…breeze-catching.”

Nature, before Mies: “never really as bad as modern hermetic buildings suggested.”

Frank Lloyd Wright’s influence on American architecture: “essentially nonexistent.”

Daniel Burnham: “seized the moment, and cynically exploited it.”

The Columbian Exposition: quoting Louis Sullivan, "set the course of architecture back a full half-century."

Chicago: The place where the “utopian dream” of modern architecture became “a nightmare of silence,” and “the spot where heroes fall victim to success.” But also: A “modern-day Rome…Mecca of Modernism…a truly beautiful city simply waiting for all its citizens to acknowledge, indeed to capitalize on it.”

These essays: “how one spends a great deal of time that plausibly could have been put to better use...”

Read more from Architecture Week:

"On first looking onto Toronto's skyline," by Michael Miner


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