Tuesday, 5 June 2007

Eyesore to Eyesore

Yes, it must be beer and architecture week here at LFTNBT.

James Howard Kunstler, Next Bests passim, has published yet another Eyesore of the Month, and this one is truly ugly. It looks like Darth Vader's summer house, all it needs is a regular fly-by by a couple of Tie-Advanced and perhaps an Imperial Shuttle on top. Especially in the picture James chooses, the one below is slightly less bunker like.

But then again it's not too dissimilar to a previous Eyesore that I think I disagree with. This is the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto.

Kunstler describes this as a "stuffy old gentleman of a museum [that] has developed a horrendous steel and glass tumor". I get what he's saying there, but to me it seems that there's an idea behind the "tumor".

The older building is perfectly fine to my eyes if, yes, a little stuffy. It looks like an old museum with slightly churchy pretensions (I'm sure there's a proper jargon for this). The extension is something new, but it also looks like it is growing out of the original building. Almost like the old place couldn't quite contain all those ideas in one place and the new annexe just exploded out of it.

I don't think that it's crazy for crazy's sake; it's saying museums don't need to be stuffy whilst being, rightly, anchored to its past.

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