Earlier this week, Thrillist.com posted a listicle of "The Most Badass Buildings in America You've Probably Never Heard Of" and included Milwaukee Art Museum’s Quadracci Pavilion.
The site's T.M. Brown quoted the late Zaha Hadid saying, "Architecture isn't only about shelter. It should be able to excite you, to calm you, to make you think," and went on to write, "Architect Santiago Calatrava's buildings always end up looking like Dinobots, and the Milwaukee Museum of Art is no exception. One of the best things about the museum is the ‘Burke Brise Soleil,’ giant wings that fold open every morning and lower at night or during bad weather."
While we surely won’t quibble about the badass-itude of Santiago Calatrava’s first building in the United States – completed in 2001 – it seems hard to believe that it’s a place "you’ve probably never heard of."
After all, Conde Nast Traveler called it one of the world’s 12 iconic buildings.
It was featured in a Victoria's Secret ad.
GQ hailed it.
It was a Bing cover photo.
(PHOTO: Bing/Dan Bishop)
Smithsonian magazine called it a "must-see."
It’s been in movies.
A TV show was inspired by its design.
Climbing to the top of it also helped spur my Urban Spelunking series, though I admit that doesn’t have much of a profile outside our humble city limits.
Among the other buildings making Thrillist's list were Rem Koolhaas' Seattle Public Library, James Turrell's Twilight Epiphany in Houston, Bjarke Ingels' VIA 57 West in New York City, Frank Gehry's Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health in Las Vegas.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.