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World's Most Beautiful Buildings

The Guggenheim, Bilbao, Spain

The Frank Gehry–designed, titanium-clad phenomenon that upstaged the Guggenheim’s Frank Lloyd Wright transformed the way the world understands architecture, art museums, and the strategies for reviving depressed industrial cities. Today, the shiny undulating museum doesn’t look as shocking as it once did, but it does embody a certain kind of late 20th-century thinking—the thrill of formal complexity and high art.

Small Is Beautiful: Alternatively, we could make a case for Frank Gehry’s first major building, the diminutive white Vitra Museum in Weil am Rhein, Germany.

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