The Question of Time in the Time of the Plague.

Still from Angels in America (photo by Brinkoff Moegenburg)


The revival of Angels in America has received plenty of notice, this particular review from David Le is thorough, discerning, and often deeply insightful.

As a play, Angels rises above its companions in large part because it helps us grasp the latter: how political and personal disappointment lead us to despair, and how despair gives way to a kind of vertigo, as the projects that once gave our lives orientation come to naught. We are left stunned, breathless to keep up with a life that rushes on unabated. Kushner’s work grapples with the question of what is to be done — what we are to do — in the midst of our collective and individual disorientation, in the absence of progress. He conveys the constitutively human trifecta of responsibility, impotence, and blindness.

Remember the Future?

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Fritz Wotruba, Holy Trinity Church, Wien-Mauer, Austria (1971–76) (photograph by Wolfgang Leeb, 2011)

This is a case of love/hate.

In its time — my time 50 years ago — Brutalism was the architecture of the new, the future. Even now, when I go through the new stairwell at City/Creston, rub the wall, I feel that little twinge of possibility, of something happening. The surface texture, the walls of concrete broke with the vocabulary of the modernist glass, or the ornamented brick. Here was something else; this was the style of great institutions, and that certainly was its downfall. Because while the concrete stood out, it aged worse. More bunker than beatific, a style that is anchored by too seldom seems to soar.

A Colossal Compendium of Brutalist Architecture Argues for Saving ‘Concrete Monsters’