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Scholarship of Design
Critical Engagement:
The Role of Ada Louise Huxtable in the Evolution of 2 Columbus Circle
Scott Murray
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Ada Louise Huxtable is widely acknowledged to be among the most influential architectural critics of the last century. Her recent death was followed by numerous assessments of the many achievements of her long, pioneering career. Although Huxtable wrote about countless works of architecture, evidence of her enduring influence may be found in the circumstances surrounding the evolution of a single building—the Gallery of Modern Art in New York City—which became inextricably intertwined with Huxtable’s critique of it. The story of Huxtable’s engagement with this building serves as a case study of the potential impact of the cultural critic and how architectural criticism intersects with practice and politics.

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