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11-year-old Jeff Greenaway hears his mom and dad argue one night after an office Christmas party. He infers from their garbled squabble that he is an orphan, found in a willow basket on the welcome mat outside their New York apartment. Thinking now that his parents are imposters, he steals away to Grand Central Station and buys a train ticket to Drakesville, Vermont, where he intends to start life all over again.
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Featured Eyesore of the Month

May 2015

James Howard Kunstler : May 4, 2015 11:45 am : Eyesore of the Month

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Behold the new Government Center Transit (“T”) stop in Boston, Mass., with the 1966-vintage “Brutalist” City Hall looming balefully in the background. What you see here is the artist’s computer rendering. See below for a photograph of the actual thing under construction.

Thanks to Architecture blogger David Brussat for illuminating the failures of this humdinger:

— 32 feet tall, will be covered with pigeon droppings in a week
— No way to clean except w/ fork lift
— Poorly detailed – Norman Foster on the cheap
— Looks like KMart does Renzo Piano

I’d add that the actual entrance pavilion (if that’s what it is) looks remarkably like the New York Thruway rest stops of yesteryear — homage to a 1957 Soviet cafeteria.

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The new World Made By Hand novel

!! Is now available !!

Kunstler skewers everything from kitsch to greed, prejudice, bloodshed, and brainwashing in this wily, funny, rip-roaring, and profoundly provocative page- turner, leaving no doubt that the prescriptive yet devilishly satiric A World Made by Hand series will continue.” — Booklist

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The 20th Anniversary edition
With an entertaining new introduction by the author

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13 Comments »

May 2015

James Howard Kunstler : May 4, 2015 11:45 am : Eyesore of the Month
Behold the new Government Center Transit (“T”) stop in Boston, Mass., with the 1966-vintage “Brutalist” City Hall looming balefully in the background. What you see here is the artist’s computer rendering. See below for a photograph of the actual thing under construction. Thanks to Architecture blogger David Brussat for illuminating the failures of this humdinger: more »

April 2015

James Howard Kunstler : April 2, 2015 11:45 am : Eyesore of the Month
I waited until April 2 because this is no joke. Behold the proposed new Kingdom Tower for Jeddah, Saudi Arabia — at one full kilometer in height, about twice the size of New York’s new Freedom Tower. The  Kingdom Tower comprises 252 floors of mixed market apartments, hotel rooms, and offices. It is an axiom that more »

March 2015

James Howard Kunstler : March 2, 2015 11:33 am : Eyesore of the Month
Behold the proposed new Google headquarters, Mountain View (Silicon Valley), CA. Google, of course, has enough walking around money in its deep pockets to indulge in the most fantastic architectural status stunt — meaning that the diminishing returns of great wealth and cleverness will bite extra hard. This, uh, structure, by Bjark Ingles and Thomas more »

February 2015

James Howard Kunstler : February 2, 2015 12:51 pm : Eyesore of the Month
Here come the borgs! Introducing the new US Federal Courthouse in Salt lake City designed by Thomas Phifer and Partners. They’ve really caught that old security state spirit in a building that looks uncannily like the computer server that contains your credit record, your tax filings, your phone log, your internet purchase trail, the drone photos more »

January 2015

James Howard Kunstler : January 5, 2015 11:19 am : Eyesore of the Month
Behold, another 80-story hotel / condo tower by the industrious Chicago architect Jeanne Gang for a site on the south bank of the Chicago River. I suggest this new style be labeled “architwerkture,” since it looks like a digitized schematic representation of something Miley Cyrus might do on an awards show. The project is a more »

December 2014

James Howard Kunstler : December 2, 2014 9:25 am : Eyesore of the Month
Behold the grandiosity of the George Lucas Museum of Narrative Art proposed for the Chicago lakefront. It is unclear exactly what it might contain besides the costumes and props for Lucas’s Star Wars cinema franchise.  The public relations bullshit cooked up to promote this roughly 30–story-tall monstrosity tells the tale in superlative bombast: The Lucas more »

November 2014

James Howard Kunstler : November 3, 2014 11:14 am : Eyesore of the Month
Behold the official reception hall of the Kansas Expo Center in Topeka, the state fairground. Heritage Hall, one of the oldest buildings in Kansas, has been retrofitted as a party shack enclosed between the convention center, Capital Plaza hotel, and a great American desert of parking lots. Curiously, they stuck a plastic portico on the sandstone more »

October 2014

James Howard Kunstler : October 6, 2014 10:00 am : Eyesore of the Month
Behold the creeping bollards of Boston. These globules are found in front of the Tip O’Neill Federal Building on Causeway Street in Boston. Combine post 9/11 paranoia with the endemic American hatred of artistry, with the opportunity to money-grub in the trough of public works, and you end up with another parody of civilized life. Below, more »

September 2014

James Howard Kunstler : September 3, 2014 11:58 am : Eyesore of the Month
  Behold the new gerbil cage for children in Queensbury, New York. Notice that there are no children there. The reason: it is a completely unrewarding place to play. In fact, it was designed not for children but for lawyers in this lawsuit-happy land. In attempting remove every possible hazard to health and safety, they more »

August 2014

James Howard Kunstler : August 4, 2014 10:12 am : Eyesore of the Month
  Behold, the latest addition to the Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, Mass, by architect Tadao Ando. Add to your collection of sleek Modernist bowling trophies. The world has had enough of minimalism on steroids; it just doesn’t know it yet. It’s ironic, for sure, arising as it does out of such a maximalist culture more »
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