Controversial Brooklyn-based architect Robert Scarano sure has plenty of time for interviews lately, having already sat down for a lengthy chat with The Real Deal and now opening up to the Brooklyn Paper. Yeesh, doesn't the guy have zoning loopholes to exploit or something? Apparently not. Scarano says the building bust has wiped out his iCal: "We went from booking 600 jobs a year in 2006 and 2007 to basically doing zero." Which might be why ol' Bobby Scar is a bit cranky. Make that a lot cranky. In the all-too-brief Brooklyn Paper interview, he weighs in on numerous new non-Scarano Brooklyn creations, and doesn't offer many kind words.
Scarano loves thee: Toren ("not a bad job."), the new Barclays Center design ("It’s a much simpler building. It’s a more buildable job. It has some aesthetic qualities, even though critics already dubbed it the airport hanger."), the stalled Enrique Norten BAM building ("would have been a good project."), Richard Meier's On Prospect Park ("Not that I’m a tremendous fan of Meier's either. There's a tremendous slavery to Modernism in what he's doing. But at least they’re trying to raise the bar and that's what we’re trying to do, too.")
Scarano loves thee not: Atlantic Yards in general ("Why can’t we get a guy from New York to do it?"), The Oro ("typical 1980s design and it doesn’t speak well for the skyline."), Enrique Norten's Garfield Sparta ("That design is as non-contextual as you get when you look at the way it’s towering over the brownstones and its fenestration patterns. And now the developer is asking for permission to build three extra townhouses on the site, because it’s unprofitable without them!"), all of Brooklyn (in response to whether the building boom gave Brooklyn any architectural marvels: "Unfortunately, I don’t know if we got anything.")
As for his own work, Scarano says he's just trying "to take these mundane little lots and put some jewels on them." Some favorites jewels here, here, here, here, and here. They certainly are precious, in their own special way.
· Checkin’ in with?Robert Scarano, Brooklyn’s ‘bad boy’ architect [BK Paper]