scott recently asked me what i thought of rem koolhaas and i now have an answer. he is an architect that emphasizes the aggressive, confrontational and, at the same time, hedonistic and indulgent aspects of architecture. a professor of mine knows him well and says he is very talented, smart, well-spoken and basically a total unbearable asshole. he is completely hedonistic himself, which is why his architecture is able to reflect it so well.
upon examination, i think he has some interesting aspects to his work but i don't love his architecture.
that said, i do absolutely love him as a writer. he was a writer before he was an architect and it shows. i just read his book, delirious new york. so good. you know how you want to read history but most of the time it is the boring facts with only a few interesting anecdotes. well, this book presupposes that you have a solid grasp of basic history and just fills you with the wonderful, insane, beautifully odd and interesting history of new york. you do not have to be into architecture to dig this book the most. quick read. and you can tell it is by an architect because there are a lot of great pictures. i highly recommend checking it out.
this, the seattle library, is probably now his most famous work and generally agreed to be his best:
his new project in dubai that is clearly influenced by the death star.
incidentally, cincinnati folks, cincy's contemporary art museum is probably the closest thing to a koolhaas-esque building in ohio - it was done by zaha hadid, a former student and partner at his firm.