In December, Architect magazine columnist Aaron Betsky listed his “best and worst” events from 2014. Among the “reasons to despair,” he announced, was “The New York Times’ abandonment of serious criticism of architecture.” As evidence, he pointed to all of Michael Kimmelman’s work as the paper’s current “architecture critic” (Betsky’s quotation marks) and a single opinion piece penned by others earlier that month. The first newspaper to appoint a full-time critic–Ada Louise Huxtable, who held the post from 1963 to 1982 and was the first-ever recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism–the Times, according to Betsky, has quit the field it virtually invented fifty years ago.
The Gray Lady’s supposed desertion raises a big question: What is “serious criticism” in architecture? This is a vital topic, since architecture critics often shape public opinion as much as architects themselves do, if not more so. I asked a range of respected writers what they think the defining traits of good criticism are. Blair Kamin, the Pulitzer-winning critic of the Chicago Tribune, gave me a list he called “The Seven Lamps of Architecture Criticism,” in homage to John Ruskin‘s 1849 treatise. Shamelessly, I’m stealing and adapting his outline around comments from others.
Read the Full Story HERE >>>> via Huffington Post The 7 Lamps of Architecture Criticism | Lance Hosey.