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Lebbeus Woods (1940–2012)

Of the architects we’re proudest to have published first, and often, Lebbeus Woods is surely near or at the top of that list. Starting in 1989 with his monograph, OneFiveFour, we subsequently published War and Architecture (1993), Radical Reconstruction (1997), and The Storm and the Fall (2004). All feature Lebbeus’ well-known and inimitable drawings, kinetic lines so full of energy that they seem to lift the architecture he so vividly imagined clean off the page. Sadly, I spoke with Lebbeus ten days ago about a new book, this one a history of post-WWII architecture, told from his unique insights as one of the great architectural visionaries of our times. He sounded strong and in good spirits (he’s been ill for some time), and excited about nearing completion of a major built work, a sky lobby in a project in China planned by his close friend, Steven Holl. I hope we’ll be publishing his just-finished history in the next year or so—stay tuned here for details. Although it will be his last printed book, his influence is deeply imprinted in the architectural and visual culture of the early twenty-first century and in legions of devoted students. I can state with certainty that, as sorely as he will be missed, you haven’t heard the last from Lebbeus Woods: he will be with us for a very long time to come.


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