Chicago Tribune critic to discuss decade’s architectural wonders and failures

Standing as bookends on a decade of architectural milestones are the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the 2010 opening of the world’s tallest building in Dubai. What’s happened between those hallmark events is what Pulitzer Prize-winning Chicago Tribune architecture critic Blair Kamin will address when he gives the Richard N. Campen Lecture in Architecture and Sculpture at Case Western Reserve University.

The free, public talk, “Architecture in a Tumultuous Age,” begins at 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 10, in the Thwing Center Ballroom. It continues the Baker-Nord Center for Humanities’ yearlong exploration of “Celebrity, Fame, and Genius.”

Kamin began covering the architectural news in 1992. His investigative and critical writing earned him a 1999 Pulitzer for Criticism for “Reinventing the Lakefront,” a series in which he explored how Chicago used 12 miles of prime public space along the shoreline.

The Pulitzer is among some 30 awards he has won for reporting, which include the George Polk Award for Criticism (1996), the American Institute of Architecture’s (AIA) Institute’s Honor for Collaborative Achievement (1999) and the AIA’s Presidential Citation (2004) among others.

Prior to writing about architecture at the Tribune, Kamin covered culture and suburban news. He joined the Tribune after working from 1984-87 at the Des Moines Register, where he also served as an architecture critic.

The title for the Baker-Nord event is derived from the title of his 2010 book, Terror and Wonder: Architecture in a Tumultuous Age, which was published by the University of Chicago Press and was a collection of columns he penned over the years.

For registration or information, call Maggie Kaminski at 216.368.2242 or visit