11 February 2009
If you are in or around Saint Louis, you must make time to visit this exhibition on the life and works of American architect Eero Saarinen. While his most well known icon work is the Gateway Arch at the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial, seeing the full range of his work including sketches, models, construction drawings, furniture, mock-ups, etc. is a once in a lifetime experience.
Owning the book, Shaping the Future, is highly recommended, but owning it is no replacement for seeing the exhibition in person. Apparently the installation at the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum is among the best of this traveling show. The extensive nature of the materials included and their inherent cultural and artistic interest make it a world class exhibition that should be considered a 'blockbuster' museum show for which exorbitant admission fees could be charged. However, due to the corporate support by door hardware company Assa Abloy, this exhibition is free to all.
If possible, make it back several times. The layers of information make it more than worth the investment of time.