Photo of the Week: Frank Gehry Gives the Finger to the Spanish Press

Great moments in starchitecture.

guggenheim bilbao

An example of the kind of design some Spaniards call “arquitectura-espectáculo,” aka, the Guggenheim in Bilbao.

Frank Gehry was in Oviedo, Spain this week to receive an award from the Fundación Príncipe de Asturias, which honors artists and arts organizations. The rationale for Gehry’s inclusion reads (translated from the Spanish):

His buildings are characterized by virtuosic play with complex forms, by the use of uncommon materials, like titanium, and by his technological innovation, which has influenced other spheres of art as well.

Apparently, Gehry takes Spanish adoration a bit for granted these days. At a press conference to coincide with the awards, the first question was from a reporter who asked how he responds to the charge that he practices what Spaniards call “arquitectura-espectáculo,” a term basically explained by the Guggenheim in Bilbao.

His answer?

He then went on to say (translating from an account in El Mundo):

Let me tell you something. In the world in which we live, 98 percent of what’s being built and designed today is pure shit.

He also said the reporter’s question was stupid.

See the video of the digital (HA!) moment here, and witness the stunned silence, which is golden, indeed. And if you read Spanish, the El Mundo account is pretty great.

Reminder: This is the man who is redesigning the Art Museum. Olé!

La peineta del arquitecto [El Mundo]
Frank Gehry Says Architecture Today Is “Pure Shit” [Gizmodo]