U-g-l-y, but is a Name an Alibi?
It may be argued that good design is in the eye of the beholder (yes, argued not agreed). Such is so of the building where most UCLA Extension business takes place. Shortly after I started working here I said to Scott that the building did not please my aesthetic tastes. He then told me it was an important edifice built by an important man, A. Quincy Jones. I still don't like it, but now I know who did it.
I prefer the 1010 building, which is prettier. According to me. And according to a prospective student I met yesterday who was aghast that 10995 Le Conte was standing. He said his father was a parole officer, and the building reminded him of his father's workplace. In other words, he was waiting for parolees to emerge from the location in which I'm currently sitting at a keyboard. Although I'm not a defender of this institutional design, I was a little defensive at his comment. This is, after all, the look of public education in America.
Photographer Lissa Rivera has a photography project documenting public and private schools on her website. I think they're mostly east coast public schools, because they have lovely hardwood floors which I've never seen as a student or teacher in California. Also, the public schools appear to have been photographed prior to school starting. By which I mean they look fairly clean.
Also, at one of the San Francisco high schools where I taught, the bathroom stalls were about shoulder-high, because it was built as an elementary school. Teachers used the bathroom too, since it was the only one on the second floor. I think you can imagine where I'm going with this.
So, although this may be a country in which name and image are our means of immortality, and even more immediately, our justification for being, I still don't care who did it if I don't like it. I mean, I'll care in an intellectual sense, but not an aesthetic one.
A. Quincy Jones on Wikipedia
UCLA Space Inventory Stats
Lissa Rivera Photography
Good Magazine Picture Show of Lissa Rivera's "Places of Education"