Architect, museum curator, and industrial designer Emilio Ambasz is renowned for projects that fuse architecture and landscape -- high-rise buildings enveloped in verdant screens of trees and plants, houses that virtually disappear beneath mounds of earth. His highly original work defies easy categorization and analysis, and Ambasz has himself presented his designs as springing from his deeply felt mythical and poetic desires, serving notice of his own uncomfortable fit with conventional critical categories.
In this penetrating collection of essays, prominent scholars and architects take up the challenge and set about rigorously "analyzing Ambasz." In addition to exploring his architectural work, the authors examine Ambasz's innovative industrial designs, including the Vertebra chair and dozens of other ingenious objects. Ambasz's curatorial work, particularly the seminal "New Italian Design" exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, is also discussed in an effort to fill out a complex picture of the man. Completing the volume is Sorkin's interview with Ambasz and Emilio, the self-described visionary and pragmatic sides of the designer's personality. Photographs and drawings accompany this lively debate that dramatically expands an understanding of Ambasz and his work.