The book is a journey through North American architecture of the 1990s marked by 18 exemplary projects within a wider context of transition and metamorphosis intersecting global phenomena and the recovery of local and regional features.
The critical descriptions of selected projects supply a reading of the North American practice and the tools with which it works in those years. Starting from the crisis between the late 1980s and the first 1990s the book describes the new and opposing trends arising in the Federation and the issues of a lively and dynamic debate.
The projects themselves drive the reader through the alternating topics of those years and are the core section of the book which doesn’t fail to underline the legacy of European architecture in the U.S., as shown by the opening pages devoted to Aldo Rossi and his professional and academic adventure in the U.S.
The survey includes iconic projects, such as the Team Disney Building (1985-1991) designed by Michael Graves, that have been able to transform themselves into trademarks and the first works of those designers that, shortly after this period, will become the new masters of American architecture: Frank Gehry, Peter Eisenman and Steven Holl.
The last chapters of the book looks at the most recent and experimental projects of the decade. “Corresponding to the different design and linguistic responses was, at the same time, a continuous questioning concerning the tools of design and communication of architecture, clearly speaking to a problematic relationship with a social and material reality undergoing continual change”.