WebQuest

Frank Gehry, The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao

Introduction

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What Gehry has built in Bilbao is a tribute to art, a huge sculpture functioning as both exhibition space and symbol of civic pride for a provincial city reaching for greatness. He has sculpted on a building-size scale disregarding architectural conventions and rules intending to realise “buildings that have a passion in them, that have feelings in them, that make people feel something—even if they get mad at it.”

This web-quest will help you to understand the history and the technique of this new kind of architecture.

N.B. The sculpture in the foreground is Joseph Koons' "Puppy", a gigantic West Highland terrier carpeted in bedding plants. Puppy combines the most saccharine of iconography—flowers and puppies—in a monument to the sentimental. Its size—seemingly out-of-control (it is both literally and figuratively still growing) but carefully constructed and tightly contained—can be read as an analogue of contemporary culture. For more information read https://www.guggenheim.org/artwork/48

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