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Alexandra Lange writes the Critical Eye column for Curbed, covering design in many forms: new parks and Instagram playgrounds, teen urbanists and architectural icons, postmodernism and the post-retail era. Her latest book, The Design of Childhood: How the Material World Shapes Independent Kids, is being published by Bloomsbury USA in June 2018.

Alexandra was a 2014 Loeb Fellow at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, and received a publication grant from the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts for her new book. She has taught design criticism at the School of Visual Arts and New York University, and also wrote the book on it: Writing About Architecture: Mastering the Language of Buildings and Cities (Princeton Architectural Press, 2012).

Alexandra lives in Brooklyn with her family.

Concrete utopia

The Museum of Modern Art’s new exhibition contextualizes the concrete architecture of the former Yugoslavia—but what does our love of brutalist buildings say about us?

Gateway to what?

St. Louis’s Gateway Arch is perfect. What lay at its feet was the problem.

Sky bridges and gardens aren’t real public space. Here’s why that matters

We shouldn’t abandon the cities we have for some amenities in the clouds.

Young adult architecture

Public libraries offer teenagers space where no one tells them to sit up straight or be quiet.

Filed under:

Can LA repeat its 1984 Summer Olympics success?

The 1984 Olympics Games proved Los Angeles could do spectacle—on a shoestring budget. Can the city do it again in 2028?

The end of the architect profile

It’s time to stop perpetuating the myth of the lone genius.

What does a presidential building look like?

Barack Obama wants to create a new kind of presidential library. Why has that proven so contentious?

‘Black Mirror’ meets HGTV, and a new genre, home design horror, is born

How we get from coveting midcentury things to the Internet of Things.

In a post-mall era, why are starchitects building more retail?

It’s not that bricks and mortar is out of fashion; bad customer experience is out of fashion.

Why postmodernism is the palate cleanser we need

How our love-to-hate-it relationship with postmodernism may be more important to design progress than we think.