Robert A.M. Sternns 800-pound gorilla (actually, 11 pounds) of a book, New York 2000, was the topic of a discussion at Columbia that turned out to be a cross between a roast and a fest. Tom Wolfe shocked everyone in the audience (including Suzanne Stephens, Mike Wallace, and Kenneth Jackson) by proclaiming that the Whitney should move out of the Breuer Bunker and into the Huntington Hartford Building. Then you could demolish the Brutalist, WWI machineegun turret and sell the land to a developer!! This, from the man who wrote despairingly of the alleged death of the Landmarks Commission in a recent New York Times Op-ed, lamented ripping the face off Edward Durell Stonees 2 Columbus Circle for the Museum of Arts & Design (MAD). Little did Wolfe know that one of the walking dead,, landmarks commissioner Margery Perlmutter, was very much alive a few rows away, listening with rapt attention and taking careful notes.
Speaking of the devil, MAD architect Brad Cloepfil, who was allowed to brazenly demolish Ed Stonees facade without so much as a hearing at the LPC, was seen at the Pentagram party for new partner Luke Hayman, with friend, Pentagramist Lisa Strausfeld>or was that her twin sister Laura?
Talk is going around that Columbia dean Mark Wigley is being considered as chairman of Harvardds GSD. Leave New York for Boston? He must be mad too!
Up the Hudson, at down-in-the-dumps Newburgh, a week-long charrette to resurrect the city, led by DPZZs Andres Duany and developer Steve Maun of Leyland, uncovered that the culprit behind the razing of a major part of the cityys historic waterfront was none other than our very own Frank O. Gehry! The architect signed the order in 1966 as part of what was then known as urban renewal.. Can we chalk it up to youthful indiscretion, or is his Atlantic Yards project in Brooklyn just another case of, as the French say, plus a change?
Rumor has it that Architectural Record still has NO plan to redesign its magazine, despite universal agreement that it needs a major facelift. I mean, it doesnnt even have any competition. You would think editor-in-chief Robert Ivy
would take a chance! Finally, a mysterious gift arrived without a note from Tsao & McKown: a flimsy cotton tote bag. When questioned, their office said it was a very, very late Christmas gift, now coming for the Year of the Pig. Thanks Calvin, Zak, and…!
At press time, yours truly was in a stylish car crash, right in front of Miess Seagrams Building! I knew it was a mistake to meet a client on Presidents Day, and all of a sudden there was a car making an unexpected left hand turn directly onto our path on Park Avenue. Luckily, we all walked away unharmed (if dazed), save for broken front lights and bumper. Just then, I noticed that we were exactly at the southwest corner of the plaza, where Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard had a tete-a-tete in Breakfast at Tiffanyys! CCest la vie!
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