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There are few outside a circle of initiates who realize just how important Rem Koolhaas and the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) are for international architecture today. Arguably, Koolhaas/OMA is the most interesting architect from the latter half of the 20th century. But how well is this truly understood? Certainly in the Netherlands, OMA is...
There are few outside a circle of initiates who realize just how important Rem Koolhaas and the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) are for international architecture today. Arguably, Koolhaas/OMA is the most interesting architect from the latter half of the 20th century. But how well is this truly understood? Certainly in the Netherlands, OMA is known only for the Kunsthal in Rotterdam. The average culture buff--who sees architecture from a layman's point of view--often only has two criteria when looking at architecture: it has to look good and it has to serve a purpose. Regrettably this section of the public considers the Kunsthal to be a failure on both counts and so is blind to the significance of Rem Koolhaas and OMA. In New York, Koolhaas's Prada store is perhaps equally elusive: it looks unlike any other store and it behaves unlike any other store. What is OMa maps the fields where Koolhaas is active, not only showing his realized buildings but illuminating his perspective on the contemporary city and urbanity. The book describes with great clarity Koolhaas's role in architectural theory and the body of concepts wielded by him. Authors of international repute from beyond the province of architecture examine Koolhaas's work in the light of social and economic developments. As a result, What is OMA paints an intelligent picture of the sheer range of Rem Koolhaas's architecture and its seminal role in the architectural world. It is the first book to approach Koolhaas's work from the vantage point of disciplines other than architecture and to explain it to the general public.
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