Just shy of a month after the news broke that longtime architecture critic Nicolai Ouroussoff would be leaving his post at the NY Times to pursue writing a book, the paper has announced his soon-to-be replacement. Included as one of many names Architectural Record allowed its readers to vote on while the magazine joined in on the rampant speculation, the Gray Lady’s new critic is Michael Kimmelman. Not poached away from another paper, Kimmelman has been at the Times since his days as a freelance music critic starting in the late 80s, later stepping in as the paper’s lead art critic and most recent taking over the “Abroad” column, after having moved to Berlin in 2007. The Chicago Tribune‘s Blair Kamin has a copy of the memo announcing Kimmelman’s reassignment, issued by culture editor Jonathan Landman. Here’s a bit from that, a brief synopsis of why he seems more than prepared to take over after Ouroussoff makes his exit:
As for architecture, you may recall among other things his recent Times Magazine profiles of Oscar Niemeyer, Shigeru Ban and Peter Zumthor, his pieces in The New York Review of Books about Frank Lloyd Wright and the New York baseball stadiums, and this dispatch about the restoration of an old museum in Berlin. His writings in the field go back to his days between Yale and Harvard as a fledgling editor at ID Magazine and architecture critic for The New England Monthly.
Landman goes on to say that Kimmelman is set to take over the position once he moves back to New York from Berlin. After that, he will apparently continue his “Abroad” column, and receive not Ouroussoff’s title of “Architecture Critic,” but rather, “Senior Critic.”
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