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The Next Homegrown Starchitect?

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The work of architect John Ronan has been trumped before by our humble blog, but now the awards and accolades are really piling up. Local godfather of the discipline, Stanley Tigerman and critic Blair Kamin have pretty much anointed Ronan Chicago's next star architect, given the right breaks. That's the sentiment in Kamin's Cityscapes column, in yesterday's Tribune. Kamin reviews Ronan's forceful prototype for new school construction, showing how it revels in right angles, natural light, and bestows a calmness and dignity to students. In Ronan's words: "There's sort of an ethical imperative when you're doing public architecture to serve the public and not your own ego. Where do you want to put that money: on geometry, a weird shape, or put it in spaces inside?" Even without the ego, the prototype, first enacted at the new South Shore High, has garnered big magazine spreads. This, along with awards for his Poetry Foundation, has earned Ronan some serious attention. [Cityscapes]