In this critically acclaimed biography, Franz Schulze probes the private and professional life of one of the most famous architects and architectural critics of the twentieth century.
The only child of a wealthy Midwestern family, Philip Johnson was a millionaire by the time he graduated from Harvard, and in 1932 he helped stage the historic International Style exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art. A patron of the arts and a political activists who flirted with the politics of Hitler, Huey Long, and Father Coughlin, he went on to create controversial and historical structures such as the Glass House, the Roofless Church, the AT & T Building, the Crystal Cathedral, and many more. Johnson's personal charms paired with his manipulative ploys—like his "borrowing" of designs—shine through in this biography.
Drawing on Johnson's correspondence, personal photographs, and speeches, and on interviews with his friends and contemporaries, Schulze fills the biography with fascinating information on the architect's family, travels, friends and lovers, and his many buildings and spaces themselves.
Franz Schulze is a professor of art at Lake Forest College. He is the author of Fantastic Images: Chicago Art since 1945, One Hundred Years of Chicago Architecture, and Mies van der Rohe: A Critical Biography.