Lebbeus Woods, visionary architect of imaginary worlds, dies in New York

Lebbeus Woods, Light Pavilion, China. © spacearchitects.blogspot.com.es

Vía The Guardian.

Architects including Zaha Hadid and Nigel Coates pay tribute to Lebbeus Woods, the cult building designer who dreamed up fantastical structures from a parallel universe

Posted by Oliver Wainwright
Wednesday 31 October 2012 13.34 GMT

Lebbeus Woods, the cult experimental American architect, died on Tuesday in New York, aged 72.

Born in Michigan in 1940, he worked for Eero Saarinen in the 1960s, but became best known for his conceptual work, which explored a kind of architecture "that gives us the opportunity to experience a type of space we haven't experienced before", through a vast body of intricate drawings and models.

Dynamic compositions of splintered surfaces and twisted wiry forms, his fantastical scenes depicted alternative worlds, glimpses into a parallel universe writhing beneath the earth's crust.

His dystopian visions were often set in disaster stricken cities – from Sarajevo to Zagreb, Havana to New York – and often adopted an almost medical metaphor, faceted accretions acting as "scabs" over the "wounds" of a building damaged by war and natural catastrophe. "Architecture should be judged not only by the problems it solves," said Woods, "but by the problems it creates."

Beyond inspiring a whole generation of architects, he also lent his talents to Hollywood, working briefly as the conceptual architect of Vincent Ward's ill-fated Alien III – abandoned in favour of David Fincher's much more successful Alien 3, which Woods later described as having "unremarkable sets" and "unrelenting grimness."

Woods' only built project was completed this year, the Light Pavilion within a vast complex of towers in Chengdu by Steven Holl – who explains more about the project below, along with a series of reflections from architects and academics, writers and critics who have been inspired by his work over the years.

Para leer los tributos de diversos arquitectos, pinche aquí.

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