When your biggest obstacle is of your own doing

Gehry
Walt Disney Concert Hall, looking southwest from the courthouse. Courtesy of the Music Center of Los Angeles County.

For years, Frank Gehry's twisting forms have challenged the design community, clients, and perhaps most of all, contractors, builders and fabricators, to question the possibilities of the built environment. Internally, however could Gehry's own legacy be the most challenging project his studio has to tackle? 

This was the question posed by Philip Kennicott of the Washington Post. Examining two upcoming projects from the starchitect, Kennicott noted: 

"It's clear that the biggest threat to Gehry's legacy may be the Gehry brand itself. As the architect ages—he will turn 80 in February—and as observers attempt to sum up his career and project his legacy, there is a growing sense that his most acclaimed work, buildings made in the style of Bilbao, have turned out to be dead ends. Rather than open up new possibilities for the architect, they seem to have left him in a rut."

Certainly, Gehry's portfolio is chock full of well-known work that has won its share of admirers and critics alike, but is his past success, indeed, limiting his future? Or is it merely a challenge to push even further? 

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