Art Buzz January 23, 2012: Frank Gehry: Design for President Eisenhower’s national memorial misses the mark



Gehry’s design for Eisenhower memorial misses the mark

Source: Washington Post, 1-23-12

Anonymous/AP – This artist rendering provided by the Eisenhower Commission on Oct. 6, 2011, shows an updated model which shows the Maryland Avenue vista and promenade for the national memorial in Washington for President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Eisenhower’s family wants a memorial in the nation’s capital redesigned, saying the current plans overemphasize his humble Kansas roots and neglect…Architect Frank Gehry’s design for the congressionally authorized memorial to President Dwight D. Eisenhower is creatively unconventional, innovative in form and use of materials, monumental in scale — and the wrong thing to build.

Gehry’s initial concept, first unveiled early last year by the Eisenhower Memorial Commission, has elicited much criticism, including from Eisenhower family members. Critics have faulted the design’s non-traditional style and unusual interpretive strategy, as well as the process that led to the design.


Whatever your view, any design critique must address two basic questions: Will the form and content of the memorial meaningfully and movingly commemorate Eisenhower? And, as an artistic work of urban design and landscape architecture, will the memorial enhance the form and fabric of America’s capital city? Regrettably, the current design has serious problems on both counts…READ MORE