12 December 2008

now this is what i'm talking about

Ada Louise Huxtable valiantly reenters the fray this week with a piece in the Wall Street Journal on the endless 2 Columbus Circle debates. It's fitting that the critical history of 2CC both begins and ends with Huxtable: she is the critic who initially catapulted the original Edward Durell Stone building into infamy in the 1960s with her branding of those "lollipop" columns, and with this article, it is she who has the final word on the building's latest incarnation.

It's also fair to say that this week's piece is nothing less than a critical tour de force, indicting not only the building and it's architects, but also the entire discourse surrounding 2CC. And while I don't entirely agree with her on all the counts (see my thoughts on the matter), you can't help but give credit where credit is due. Huxtable is as ever a critical force to be reckoned with. if there's one thing we probably do agree on, it's that the whole tortured history of this little building—for the moment complete—makes me nostalgic for a time when critics both had something to say and knew how to say it.