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    Building Art: The Life and Work of Frank Gehry

    By: Paul Goldberger

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    This first full-fledged critical biography of Frank Gehry presents and evaluates the work of a man whom fifty architects, critics, and historians assembled by Vanity Fair designated "the most important architect in the world."

    It discusses at length his major buildings: from his own house--an "exploded" Dutch Colonial in Santa Monica--to the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, which has almost single-handedly transformed contemporary architecture. It considers the work in light of Gehry's personal life: the influence of his immigrant grandparents, his two marriages, his close relationships to an unusual circle of celebrated clients and friends, his longtime therapist.

    It analyzes his carefully created "aw, shucks" persona and the intense ambition it masks; examines Gehry's anxieties about fame and how his "outsider" status as a Los Angeles architect allowed him to experiment in useful ways; and finally discusses how he thinks about and employs technology to change not just the way a building can look but the way architecture itself is practiced.

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