Monday, April 10, 2006

Architecture at the Margins

The more I think about the discourse-less architecture scene in Cleveland, the more I am impressed by architects working at the "margins." You can define the "margins" in any number of ways, inlcuding the cultural margins, architectural margins, economic margins, ethnic margins, etc.

There are plently of examples of architects working in far more "remote" locales than us in Northeastern Ohio. I am regularly inspired by the work of Malcolm Blackwell in Arkansas, David Salmela in Duluth, Brain MacKay-Lyons in Nova Scotia, Turner Brooks up in the woods of Vermont, James Sterling in Maine, Teddy Cruz at the US-Mexico border and the work of Rural Studio in the Black Belt of Alabama.

Since I see many recent readers blog from some out-of-the-way places, I would be interested in their thoughts on creating credible architectural discourses away from the power centers of New York, Boston, and Los Angeles.


Anonymous said...

speaking of borders: chek this exhibition

John said...

Dan Rockhill in Kansas

Randy Brown in Nebraska

I'm sure you're aware of Rockhill, as you link to KU, though these two and most of the ones you mention have a single-family residential focus.

Does the problem in Cleveland reside in this building type, or in the institutional, cultural and other larger-scale forms?

I'll admit it's more difficult to find "marginal" architects that have a focus beyond the house, though Brown and Blackwell at least have some impressive commercial and athletic projects.

One area that might share Cleveland's woes is Iowa, who's seeing its second Chipperfield building in less than a year. I know there's good firms in that state, but it makes me wonder how much of this is Architourism and the appeal of Starchitects/name recognition over quality?