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John Leddy
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A hearty thanks to BK for this article. Bruce Graham was my uncle, so I had the pleasure of many conversations with him back in the 1970's when I was a trainee with the Santa Fe at Jackson and Michigan Avenues. Uncle Bruce was maddeningly brief about himself, and his amazing contributions. He concentrated on the great architecture he had studied, witnessed around the globe. So I learned about everything from the architecture of his mother's native Arequipa, Peru, to how you market to Sears executives so that his firm would get the job! He was witty and self effacing throughout. Apropos architecture in harmony with surroundings, what of the placement of a glass pyramid next to the Louvre to illuminate its interior with natural light? "I would have inverted it." On character, a 1963 conversation in Mexico. 'Your hero, Palmer, has met his match in Nicklaus. But they're both great. Once, when Palmer was battling Nicklaus he called a stroke on himself for nudging a ball in the rough, a nudge no one saw." Gosh, why? "Because HE saw it. To people like Palmer and Nicklaus, honor comes before success." Back to 1976: "My favorite of all is your Equitable Building" "Really? But how about the building you are in? ... Did you know that was by the great firm Burnham and Associates. Their Fred Dinkelberg was the chief architect. He had a deep appreciation for political and civic leaders and spoke admiringly and with fascinating, first hand anecdotes about Richard Daley and Jesse Jackson. Anyway, sorry to go on and on. I have brothers and cousins with far more great stories and recollections, and I hope they write in too. Thanks again for shedding so much more light on this fascinating and forceful figure in the world of art and architecture. John Graham Leddy, Colleyville, Texas BK: Many thanks, John, for sharing those wonderful memories. My condolences to you and the family.
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Mar 13, 2010