Submitted by Evelyn Kiefer on Tue, 05/02/2006 - 13:22.
I know everyone is entitled to their opinion, but I am always surprised when I hear that someone does not like the architecture of Frank Gehry. I will concede the Peter B. Lewis Building may not be the most practical of buildings, but isn't that the point? Gehry's architecture sends the perfect message to the business school, the university and NEO: don't fit in, take risks, do thinks differently.
Gehry's buildings have received some harsh criticism recently. Read the following article in Architecture Magazine:
A Not So Shining Moment for Frank Gehry
By Anna Holtzman
MARCH 08, 2005 --
March has certainly come in like a lion for superstar architect Frank O. Gehry—and an ill-tempered lion at that. First came a report from the Cambridge Chronicle surveying its readers on what they thought were the ugliest buildings in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Gehry's Stata Center for computer science (2004) at MIT won the dubious distinction of being top of the list, second only to Steven Holl's Simmons Hall (2002) at MIT. (Apparently, the university has its finger on the pulse of what makes its neighbors want to turn away in horror.)
Then, hitting closer to home for the Santa Monica-based architect, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has determined that Gehry's local jewel, the Disney Concert Hall, is shining just a little bit too brightly. To tone it down a notch, construction workers will be sanding 4,200 square feet of polished steel panels that cover part of the complex.
The decision was made after neighbors' complaints of excessive glare and resulting heat prompted the county to commission a glare consultant to investigate the problem. The consultant found that the shimmering panels of polished steel atop the building's Founders Room and its Edna Disney California Arts Theater (REDCAT) are casting focused beams of reflected light that produce temperatures of 140 degrees on the adjacent sidewalk—enough to cause sunburn, melt plastic cones, and interfere with drivers' vision. (The rest of the building is clad in a duller brushed steel, which does not produce enough glare to warrant sanding.)
The modifications will come at a cost of roughly $110,000, out of which $90,000 will be supplied by the Los Angeles Music Center, which inhabits the concert hall, for the work on the Founders Room. Another $15,000 to $20,000 will come from REDCAT for the work on its marquee.
The call for modifications comes only 18 months after the $274 million project's completion. The changes are preceded by alterations made to Gehry's 2002 building for the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland due to ice and snow that was crashing dangerously off the structure's curved, stainless-steel roof.